Ms. Livingston was honored as one of 40 dynamic individuals under the age of 40 that excel in business and contribute to the betterment of the Tucson community. More than 110 nominations were received from Tucson’s CEOs, top executives and community leaders and an independent panel of five judges selected the finalists and winners. Buffalo Exchange’s Human Resource Director Lydia Kennedy was selected last year as one of the 40 Under 40.
Since 1999, Michelle L. Livingston’s professional accomplishments have evolved through her position as Marketing Director at Buffalo Exchange, overseeing marketing, advertising, graphic design, public relations, promotions and the company website. Michelle draws national attention to Tucson business by contributing her media relations skills to the success of Buffalo Exchange, one of a small number of companies headquartered in Tucson. Michelle publicized Buffalo Exchange’s expansion to New York with coverage in TIME Magazine, The New York Times, New York City’s ABC-TV7 Eyewitness News, New York Magazine, Lucky Magazine online, The Village Voice online, Crain’s New York Business and more (2005-07). She was instrumental in bringing the company’s advertising and design in-house (2002) and rebuilt buffaloexchange.com to be instantly updatable like a blog (2003). Michelle was the only winner representing Arizona at the 2007 Silver Quill awards, Pacific Plains region, in which Buffalo Exchange won its first-ever Silver Quill Award of Excellence at the International Association of Business Communicators’ International Conference in New Orleans. Buffalo Exchange won the Southern Arizona Smart Inspiring Enterprise (SASIE) 2007 Award for Sales and Marketing, 26+ employees category. Inside Tucson Business named Michelle as one of 9 young Tucson leaders in the 2006 Up & Comers issue, recognizing her for contributions to her field and in making a difference in business and in the community.
Demonstrating the positive impact that Tucson companies can have on national and local nonprofit organizations, the Earth Day events Michelle organized at Buffalo Exchange stores raised a total of nearly $196,000 (2000-07) for The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, Surfrider Foundation and others. Michelle was honored by the Board of Directors of Surfrider Foundation with a 2006 Board Appreciation Award in Dana Point, CA. Michelle organized Buffalo Exchange’s participation in The HSUS’ Coats for Cubs program, collecting 1,917 used fur coats as bedding for orphaned and injured wildlife (2006-07).
Buffalo Exchange (buffaloexchange.com) is a sustainable company that works to protect the environment by reusing and recycling clothing. Buffalo Exchange donates to local nonprofit agencies in the community through its Tokens for Bags program, which has generated nearly $240,000 in donations to hundreds of nonprofit groups since 1994, saving 4.8 million bags. Shoppers are encouraged to accept a token instead of a bag for purchases, and Buffalo Exchange donates five cents to a charity of the customer's choice. Buffalo Exchange is unique because clothing and accessories are bought, sold and traded directly with store customers. Used clothes can be traded for any item in the store, including new clothing. The ever-changing inventory includes designer wear, basics, vintage, jeans, leather, and one-of-a-kind items. The resale clothing store chain has 30 stores and 3 franchises in 12 states, with nearly $43.9 million a year in sales (as of August 2007).