Business leader Vikki L. Pryor ’78 advises first-year law students on professional development

Published January 5, 2017

Vikki is a true leader and role model for our students. Her diverse and exemplary career is inspirational, and her willingness to come to the Law School without hesitation to share her expertise is a testament to her commitment to the Law School and to the next generation of attorneys.
Makau Mutua, Dean
SUNY Buffalo Law School

Vikki L. Pryor ’78, principal and innovator at Change Create Transform, LLC, an operations, technology and business development company based in New York City, spoke to SUNY Buffalo Law students on professional development and the importance of networking, at a kick-off event for the Law School’s first-year mentor program.

Pryor founded Change Create Transform to provide businesses and individuals with a fresh approach to thought leadership, problem-solving and idea generation. She oversees innovation, strategy, planning, sales, business development, and partnership generation.

Pryor was the first African-American woman to head a life insurance company in the United States, serving as president and CEO of SBLI USA for 11 years. She has also served as CEO of the American Red Cross in Greater New York, and has held senior level positions with Allstate Life Insurance, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts, and Oxford Health. In 2010, she was named one of the “75 Most Powerful Women in Business” by Black Enterprise Magazine, and in 2009, she was named one of the “50 Most Influential Women in New York” by Crain’s, New York Business. She is a member of SUNY Buffalo Law School’s Dean’s Advisory Council, a recipient of the school’s Distinguished Alumni Award, and the Students of Color Distinguished Alumni Award. A 1978 graduate of SUNY Buffalo Law School, Pryor also holds a M.B.A. degree, and is a certified public accountant.

"Vikki is a true leader and role model for our students,” says Dean Makau Mutua. “Her diverse and exemplary career is inspirational, and her willingness to come to the Law School without hesitation to share her expertise is a testament to her commitment to the Law School and to the next generation of attorneys."

The mentoring program is coordinated by SUNY Buffalo Law School and the SUNY Buffalo Law Alumni Association. Each member of the first-year class is matched with one of more than 200 mentors who are practicing lawyers or judges, and the relationship is expected to continue throughout the student’s law school years. The students benefit greatly from the generous commitment of time and expertise by members of the legal community, and have a unique opportunity to ask questions about the legal profession from a source outside of the classroom.

The program kicks off each year with a social event where mentors and students often meet each other for the first time. This year, a "matching reception" will be held on Tuesday, February 26, 2013 from 5:30-8:00 p.m. in the Center for Tomorrow on the University's North Campus. After the event, mentors and students independently coordinate future contact at their convenience and discretion.