Release Date: May 23, 2008
BUFFALO, N.Y. -- State Senator Mary Lou Rath and Moog Inc. will be honored at the University at Buffalo's Business Partners Day luncheon to be held at noon on June 6 in the Hyatt Regency.
Rath will receive the Igniting Ideas Award for her leadership in supporting the university and its economic development initiatives in Western New York.
Moog will receive the Vital Partner Award, the highest honor bestowed on a company by UB, in recognition of its longtime support of, and collaboration with, the university.
Edmund Egan, president and chief executive officer of ONY, Inc., and Bruce Holm, executive director of UB's New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences, will receive the first University at Buffalo Faculty Entrepreneur Award.
During the luncheon, Daniel Gunderson, upstate chair of Empire State Development, will speak on "Building the Knowledge Economy in Upstate New York."
UB Business Partners Day celebrates successful and productive relationships among industry, government and UB by bringing together leaders from each sector to hear a national speaker. The annual event honors business and civic leaders who have demonstrated outstanding leadership in support of UB and Buffalo Niagara.
This year, UB has expanded the Business Partners Day program into a half-day of free, business-focused workshops, each designed to help UB's partners leverage the wide range of resources the university is making available to better serve as a catalyst for economic growth and business development.
The Igniting Ideas awards are presented to business and civic leaders who have played key roles in strengthening the economic health of New York State and Buffalo Niagara by partnering with UB to improve development policies and practices, create new jobs and encourage new business enterprises.
UB President John B. Simpson said Rath is being honored for her longstanding support of the value that a public research university brings to a region's economy.
"In honoring Senator Rath with the Igniting Ideas award," Simpson added, "we pay tribute to her longtime leadership and advocacy in advancing UB's vision for building a strong knowledge-based economy. Clearly, this is a vision that Senator Rath strongly shares.
"Over the years, she has proven a steadfast and strong supporter of the university, demonstrating time and time again her recognition of the vital role that UB is poised to play in transforming our region and state, and her commitment to helping to realize this great potential."
Most recently, Senator Rath has focused her efforts on the Western New York Wellness Works initiative. A collaboration with researchers from the UB School of Public Health and Health Professions, the three major Western New York health insurers and 13 local worksites, this research project has the potential to directly impact the regional economy by measuring how worksite health promotion programs affect the physical health of employees and fiscal health of the worksites involved.
The $1 million initiative funded by Rath was designed originally to promote company-sponsored wellness programs; that funding leveraged an additional $700,000 in funding in private support to expand the program to conduct further research on employee health and wellness and to analyze the complex issue of health care costs.
A lifelong resident of Erie County, Sen. Rath holds the distinction of having been the first woman elected to represent the 61st district, comprising Erie and Genesee counties, and the first female to serve in a leadership role in the Senate Majority.
Harvey G. Stenger, Jr., dean of the UB School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, said Moog's many partnerships with UB Engineering "exemplify the extraordinary benefits that are gained by faculty, students, corporate partners and the community when industry and academia work together. We are proud that more than 200 UB graduates work at Moog and that more than a dozen individual points of contact exist between Moog and UB in education, community service and research."
Martin J. Berardi, president of Moog Medical Devices Group, will accept the award on behalf of Moog Inc., a worldwide designer, manufacturer and integrator of precision control components and systems, which has long been a generous supporter of UB. This company, whose high-performance systems control military and commercial aircraft, satellites and space vehicles, as well as automated industrial machinery and medical equipment, also has mentored UB student interns and collaborated on research initiatives, in addition to serving on various advisory committees and boards.
A new driving simulation laboratory that is helping UB engineers to conduct research on automotive and flight vehicles features a "car" mounted on a six-degree-of-freedom motion base, donated by Moog Inc., simulates realistically the sensations of turning, braking and traveling up or down a hill.
Robert Brady, president, chairman and chief executive officer of Moog Inc., has provided UB with years of service as a volunteer on several UB boards and advisory councils, including the UB Council, UB Foundation, the UB Office of Science, Technology and Economic Outreach (STOR) and UB's New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences.
Philanthropic efforts by Moog have involved company leaders advocating for stronger state support on behalf of UB, as well as the support of university events, including UB Business Partners Day and the UB Scholarship Gala.
Egan and Holm will receive the UB Faculty Entrepreneur Award to recognize their remarkable accomplishments in establishing the role of lung surfactant in restoring lung function in infants who suffer from respiratory distress, and in bringing this technology to the clinic as a safe and effective biologic therapy.
The goal of the award is to recognize the importance of the role of translating the inventions and discoveries of UB scientists and scholars to benefit society.
From 9 a.m. to noon, attendees are invited to attend any of the following free workshops, hosted by UB faculty, staff and company partners, that will help them learn about how their businesses can take advantage of UB's resources:
• "Add the Strength of UB to Your Marketing Mix"
• "Designing the Future to Save You Time and Money"
• "ESD-101 for Business"
• "Employees who are also Caregivers: Aging America's Emerging Workforce Issues"
• "The Hickey Cardiac Monitoring System: A Collaborative Path to Market"
• "Bringing it Home with UB Law Affordable Housing Clinic"
• "The Art of Affiliation: Arts in Health Care Partnership with Two Diverse Hospitals and the UB Center for the Arts"
• "Filling Your Talent Pipeline with Student Interns and New Graduates"
• "Investing in Worksite Wellness Programs: What's the ROI for Small Companies and Those with Limited Resources?"
• "Partners in Biomedical Informatics for Better Health Care and Economic Growth"
• "3D Modeling and Visualization in Animation and Urban Design"
• "UB Partnerships for Lean Six Sigma"
A complete description of workshops and their presenters is available at http://www.buffalo.edu/yourbusiness/workshops.html.
To reserve a seat at the luncheon, please go to http://www.ubevents.org/regengine/event_page.php.