Frank A. Sedita
Frank A Sedita - 1965 BPDReport.jpg
56th and 58th Mayor of Buffalo
In office
January 1, 1966 – March 5, 1973
Preceded byChester A. Kowal
Succeeded byStanley M. Makowski
In office
January 1, 1958 – December 31, 1961
Preceded bySteven Pankow
Succeeded byChester A. Kowal
Personal details
BornJune 20, 1907
New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.
DiedMay 2, 1975(1975-05-02) (aged 67)
Buffalo, New York, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Sarah Vacanti
(m. 1935)
EducationCanisius College (BA)
University of Buffalo (JD)

Frank Albert Sedita (June 20, 1907 – May 2, 1975) was an American attorney and politician who served as the 56th and 58th mayor of Buffalo, New York.

Early life and education

He was born in New Orleans, Louisiana on June 20, 1907. His family relocated to Buffalo, New York in 1911. When he was 10, Sedita began selling newspapers and shining shoes around the Downtown Buffalo area. He attended Hutchinson Central High School and spent his summers working in canning factories and on farms in Wilson and Lyndonville, New York.

Sedita received a Bachelor of Arts from Canisius College. In 1931, he received his law degree from the University at Buffalo Law School.


In 1950, Sedita was elected as a City Court judge. He resigned from his job on the City Court bench on September 6, 1957 to pursue his mayoral bid. On November 5, 1957, he was elected mayor, defeating incumbent Steven Pankow. During this term, urban renewal was continued and the Ellicott District Project was completed. He lost his bid for re-election to mayor in the November 7, 1961 election, when Chester A. Kowal was elected mayor. In 1962, President John F. Kennedy nominated Sedita to the post of Federal Customs Collector for the Port of Buffalo; he held that post until May 7, 1965. He was elected as mayor to a second term on November 2, 1965.[citation needed]

At the 1966 Democratic State Convention, held in Buffalo Memorial Auditorium, he was nominated to run for New York State Attorney General. He was defeated in the general election by Louis J. Lefkowitz. In June 1967, during the Buffalo riot at the Michigan Avenue YMCA, the mayor faced an angry crowd of young African Americans during an East Side street confrontation. He was re-elected on November 4, 1969. He ran for Erie County executive in 1971, but was defeated by Edward Regan in the general election. Because of health concerns, on February 8, 1973 Sedita submitted a letter of resignation to the Buffalo Common Council, to become effective on March 5, 1973.

Personal life

He married Sarah Vacanti on July 11, 1934.[2]

He died on May 2, 1975, aged 67, and was buried in Forest Lawn Cemetery. On December 14, 1987, Buffalo Public School 30 was renamed Frank A. Sedita Community School.[2]

Sedita's son, Frank A. Sedita, Jr., was a judge on the New York State Supreme Court. His grandson, Frank A. Sedita III, was twice elected District Attorney of Erie County and is now a judge on the New York State Supreme Court.


  1. ^ Rizzo, Michael (2005). Through The Mayors' Eyes. Lulu. p. 424. ISBN 978-1-4116-3757-3.
  2. ^ a b "Frank A. Sedita". Through The Mayor's Eyes, The Only Complete History of the Mayor's of Buffalo, New York, Compiled by Michael Rizzo. The Buffalonian is produced by The Peoples History Union. 2009-05-27.
Political offices Preceded bySteven Pankow Mayor of Buffalo, NY 1958–1961 Succeeded byChester A. Kowal Preceded byChester A. Kowal Mayor of Buffalo, NY 1966–1973 Succeeded byStanley M. Makowski Party political offices Preceded byEdward R. Dudley Democratic Nominee for New York State Attorney General 1966 Succeeded byAdam Walinsky