VOLUME 33, NUMBER 25 THURSDAY, April 18, 2002

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Igniting Ideas Awards to be presented
Pataki, CEOs of Compaq and Veridian to be honored at Industry University Day 2002

News Services Editor

Gov. George E. Pataki and the chief executive officers of two major corporations will be honored on May 9 by UB and its School of Engineering and Applied Sciences for their roles in establishing the Buffalo Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics.

Igniting Ideas Awards, presented to business and civic leaders who have demonstrated outstanding support to UB and the economic development of Western New York, will be presented at a luncheon at noon on May 9 at Industry University Day 2002 in the atrium of the Center for the Arts, North Campus.

"Vital Partners Igniting Ideas" will be the theme of the event, which will begin with a reception at 11 a.m.

Pataki, who will be keynote speaker, will receive an Igniting Ideas Award for his leadership in establishing the center, which he proposed early last year and which he has envisioned as creating thousands of high-tech jobs and transforming Western New York into a 21st-century economy. A collaborative effort involving New York State, industry partners and academic institutions, the center to date has attracted $50 million in state funding and more than $150 million in private-sector funding.

Michael D. Capellas, chairman and chief executive officer of Compaq Computer Corp., and David H. Langstaff, president and chief executive officer of Veridian Corp., both of whom will speak at the event, will receive Igniting Ideas Awards for their companies' contributions in establishing the center.

"We are tremendously pleased and proud to present this year's Igniting Ideas Awards to Gov. George Pataki, David H. Langstaff of Veridian and Michael D. Capellas of Compaq," said President William R. Greiner. "Each of these outstanding leaders truly exemplifies the spirit of the award, which is grounded in our belief that great things happen through collaboration—great things happen when the university, government and local and international business come together for the good of the region and state."

Greiner noted that "it was Gov. Pataki who first ignited the idea of the Buffalo Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics—and we at UB ran with that idea, an idea that came to fruition through the generous and visionary support of Veridian and Compaq, as well as our other corporate partners and business supporters.

"As the governor has remarked," he added, "the Buffalo Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics has the potential to dramatically redefine the economic landscape of our region and state. It's just one example of how an idea, once ignited, nurtured and given full developmental support, has the power to transform and revitalize the economy.

"We at UB, along with our research partners, the Roswell Park Cancer Institute and the Hauptman-Woodward Medical Research Institute, are grateful to Gov. Pataki, Mr. Langstaff and Mr. Capellas for their outstanding support of the center, and we look forward to an exciting new future ahead."

Provost Elizabeth D. Capaldi noted that "the governor's vision and commitment have allowed us to obtain partnerships with the major corporations we are honoring."

"Buffalo is currently a leader in the developing field of bioinformatics," she added, "and with our corporate and research partners we intend on keeping that lead and producing a 21st-century economy in Buffalo based on this superb science."

Compaq and Veridian are providing a total of more than $95 million toward the Buffalo Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics. Compaq is a global leader in information technology and solutions with operations in more than 100 countries. Veridian, a leading provider of information-based systems, integrated solutions and services to the U.S. government, specializes in mission-critical national security programs, primarily for the intelligence community.

As part of its partnership with UB, Compaq will be providing the university's Center for Computational Research (CCR) with a Compaq Alpha supercomputer that will more than double the center's current computing capacity and be able to do a trillion operations per second, which is 1,000 times the computing power of today's fastest PC. In addition to the substantial increase in computing power, Compaq will deliver a large storage system that will increase CCR's file storage system by more than a factor of 10.

UB's relationship with Veridian (formerly Calspan) through its Calspan-UB Research Center (CUBRC) has been a longstanding one. University researchers currently are working with Veridian on transportation studies, including modeling of vehicle dynamics and crash simulation.

Other UB researchers are affiliated with CUBRC's Center for Transportation Injury Research, a federally funded initiative to develop and evaluate systems and technologies designed to improve emergency-response systems in order to reduce injuries and loss of life resulting from vehicle-related crashes.

Veridian also is working as a subcontractor to CCR on a multimillion-dollar project aimed at trying to replace very expensive high-end visualization systems with much cheaper, commodity-level components. Applications for this technology include everything from the medical profession to defense-related projects.