IRVING — Seneca Nation businessman J.C. Seneca was recently announced as a member of the 2021 Business First Power 250, a list of the most powerful people in the Buffalo business community.

This is the first appearance on the list for Seneca who is the owner of Native Pride Travel Plaza, Six Nations Manufacturing, Buffalo Cigarettes and Tallchief Hemp/CBD as well as founder of the JC Seneca Foundation. Seneca notes the announcement as a milestone in his professional career.

According to the business publication, selections are made based on an individual’s ability to get things done coupled with their level of community-wide respect and influence.

“Twenty-five years ago, I began selling cigarettes from a construction trailer on the land where Native Pride now stands,” Seneca said. “While I had dreams and plans, I never imagined being recognized as one of the most powerful business people in our community.”

Seneca said he is honored and thanks Business First for their acknowledgment of his work and achievements in his businesses and through his foundation.

“I am also grateful to the family, friends and mentors who have worked alongside me in helping to successfully develop the varied enterprises that have earned me this recognition,” he added.

Seneca’s inclusion on The Power 250 list follows his recent tribute of 2020 Business Entrepreneur of the Year as awarded by the national publication, Native Business Magazine.

The honor acknowledges Native businesses and individuals who are rising above challenges and circumstances to advance business and protect sovereignty and also celebrates Natives who demonstrate courage, innovation and commitment to economic self-sufficiency and prosperity.

In 2020, Seneca celebrated the 25th anniversary of his Native Pride business by rebranding it with the Tallchief name of his ancestors, undertaking a full renovation of the Tallchief Diner, developing the Tallchief Outdoor Event Center, securing a $114,000 National Fuel Grant to extend natural gas lines to his business operations and launching installation of a compressed natural gas (CNG) fuel station to supplement the travel plaza’s gasoline, diesel and propane fuel services.

Seneca recently announced a partnership with Dr. Raul Vazquez, owner of G-Health Enterprises, to provide mobile healthcare and medical services to people on Native territories and surrounding communities across Western New York where there is a concerning lack of available care.

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