From Burma to Buffalo

The refugee wave changing our city


Jerry Zremski joined The News in 1984 and has been Washington bureau chief since 2007. In addition to covering Washington issues that affect people in Buffalo, Zremski has traveled the world to cover issues of importance to News readers – from presidential elections to the Iraq War. A native of Elkland, Pa., he graduated from Syracuse University and holds a master’s degree in political science from American University.

Derek Gee joined The News in 1999 and has been chief photographer since 2009. An award-winning photographer whose work has been published around the globe, Gee has used airplanes, kayaks, hiking boots and ingenuity to capture historic moments and bring readers to places they’ve never been. A Utah native raised in Brocton, N.Y., Gee graduated from Boston University.

Editor's note: The Buffalo News is using the name "Burma," rather than "Myanmar," because refugees generally refer to the nation as Burma, as does the U.S. government. Burma's military regime revived the nation's ancient name of Myanmar in 1989 in hopes of defusing ethnic tensions.

In addition, refugees will be referred to consistently by their full names in this series. That is because natives of Burma don't have first and last names: their full name identifies them at all times.