We network community leaders to create a support system and incubator for creative ideas, new strategies, collaborative programming, and economic projects. Our goal is to develop a critical mass of leaders who bring a tipping point toward community transformation.

Past Events

The Korean Prayer Project 2023

May 3 – 7, 2023 in Buffalo/Niagara, NY. Event hosts Edison St. Community Church and NorthGate Christian Community with Host Pastors: Jon Hasselbeck and Ted Howard, we were encouraged and stretched by… read more

Good Friday March 29, 2013

The regional bowls of intercession tipped earthward during Good Friday Together. Many of the leading churches of Buffalo came together to lift high one name—Jesus Christ! No famous speakers or singers were… read more


“My time with you and Deb was so amazing.  Those 6 days are almost  a blur now.  As much as any people I ever knew, you live out “This City is my Parish,” motto.  I like the way you are turning your key friends into professors who can articulate their calling in the context of the University.  These friends, and their stories, would make wonderful chapters in a book about Buffalo. Peace and thanks always.”

Recipient of
the 2016 Transformational Leadership Award

Ray Bakke

Distinguished professor of global urban ministry, Ray was Al’s Project Adviser for his Doctoral Project

“Buffalo and Western New York are in transition, and more than ever the leaders need to make sure that the renaissance reaches the masses and not just the top of the economic chain. That’s your job—to make sure that our decision makers have in their hearts and minds the ‘right stuff’ to make the rising tide lift all the boats (people).”

Recipient of
the 2014 Transformational Leadership Award.

The Honorable Anthony Masiello

City of Buffalo Mayor, 1994-2005

“I consider their ministry to be perhaps the most influential ministry in our city. Al and Deb are two uniquely anointed ministers of the Gospel of Jesus Christ (who) are committed to the leaders of our city. Those leaders consist of governmental leaders, business leaders and spiritual leaders. Al and Debbie are truly the pastors of this unique congregation.”

Recipient of
the 2015 Transformational Leadership Award.

Bishop Tommy Reid

International Evangelist to the Philippines and South Korea, Bishop Emeritus, The Full Gospel Tabernacle, Orchard Park NY

“As Council President, I have a lot of influence over budgets and positions. For me it was most important to have someone who was connected to God because I did not feel that I could be more priest than politician without that.

Now that I’ve been in office for 6 years, I realize that I’m all priest no matter what office or position I hold. That’s why I needed that person by my side, someone who was not elected, not connected to politics, but con- nected to my God. I knew the right person would see what I didn’t see. We would be better together.”

Recipient of
the 2015 Transformational Leadership Award.

Bishop Darius Pridgen

Bishop True Bethel Baptist Church, President of City Council of Buffalo NY

“Set Free provided strategic community networking, staff training and mentoring, and pastoral support services to our regional mall redevelopment project in Niagara Falls.”

Jim Anthony

Founder & CEO, APG Capital Group, North Carolina

“Rev. and Deb Warner have demonstrated that we can change the city through faith-based initiatives. When they bring a roomful of leaders together, it’s a blank canvas. We get to dream together and create the New Buffalo.”

Recipient of
the 2016 Transformational Leadership Award

Nick Sinatra

Founder and President of Sinatra & Company Real Estate

“Al and Deb are the feet to our prayers. I’ve longed and prayed for unity in the church, for racial and denominational barriers to be removed and for the church to have great positive influence in our region. Al and Deb have done more to make this happen in more places than anyone I know.”

Recipient of
the 2018 Transformational Leadership Award.

Pastor Ron Burgio

Care & Teaching Pastor, of Love Joy Church, President Emeritus, Elim Fellowship

“When looking for activists, consider religious leaders… ‘Because we are more in tune and in touch with the people, it becomes our responsibility to take the plight of the people to those who do not have the heart of the people,’ said Pastor William Gillison. Pastor Gillison, who is part of the Better Together group of pastors (facilitated by Rev. Al Warner since 2015) that we work with, founded  a development corporation to help revitalize the local neighborhood.”

Recipient of
the 2018 Transformational Leadership Award


Matt Enstice

President and CEO, Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus

“Your work has brought people of different races, municipalities and political persuasions together in order to find common ground on the issues and problems we face as a community. Having participated in this effort, I can tell you that the chances for successfully resolving problems increase greatly when people, who may disagree over policy, share the messages and lessons…  When leaders ‘connect’ on this level, our problems become solvable and our differences become smaller.”

Recipient of
the 2022 Transformational Leadership Award. 

Carl Calabrese

Former Deputy County Executive, Erie County. Carl was a founding partner of Government Action Professionals