No. 305: BioMentors, advanced architects and 10 of the nation’s best STEM high schools, right here on LI

There's a signpost up ahead: Rod Serling's "Twilight Zone," TV Guide's 29th greatest show of all time, is one of very few television programs to have its own national day.

And down the stretch they come: You’ve reached the finish line of another busy workweek, dear readers, and if you’d picked Good Magic to finish second, you’d have made a killing.

It’s May 11 and it may be National Technology Day in India, but in the United States it’s undeniably National Twilight Zone Day, truly a dimension of sight, sound and mind.

Give us your sick: Predating the United States itself, Pennsylvania Hospital – credited as the first U.S. public hospital and the home of America’s first medical library – was founded on May 11, 1751, by Benjamin Franklin and surgeon Thomas Bond.

The envelope, please: Also premiering on this date, in 1927, was the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the mutual admiration society known best for the doling out the Oscars.

RAM-a-lam-a-ding-dong: MIT Professor Jay Forrester filed a patent for “matrix core memory” on May 11, 1951, essentially creating the random-access memory computer module.

One-hit wonder: It was 41 years ago tonight – May 11, 1977 – when frustrated owner Ted Turner took over as manager of the hapless Atlanta Braves. Turner lost his one and only game in the dugout before National League President Chub Feeney ordered him back to the owner’s box.

Salute: And it was 40 years ago today when career Marine Margaret Brewer was promoted to brigadier general – making her the first female general in the history of the U.S. Marine Corps.

Happy birthday: Legendary songwriter Irving Berlin (1888-1989), legendary choreographer Martha Graham (1894-1991) and legendary surrealist Salvador Dali (1904-1989) all share the day, as does pioneering American pilot Jacqueline Cochran (1906-1980), the first woman to break the sound barrier.

And many more, sports journalist and author Mike Lupica – you’re 66 today.

Screening our call: Before we dive into your weekly socioeconomic scorecard, heartfelt congratulations to the organizers of National Screen-Free Week. The annual effort to encourage youngsters to power down their televisions, tablets and other electronics wrapped up May 6.

This may seem counterintuitive for a news service delivered exclusively by screen, but Screen-Free Week – launched in 1994 as TV Turnoff Week – is no joke, according to the latest Truth in Medicine poll from South Nassau Communities Hospital, which finds that 65 percent of children spend more than three hours per day staring at screens.

Make our day: Before you power down your devices, drop as a line at and let us know how we’re doing – story tips and calendar suggestions especially appreciated, but honestly, we just like to read your voice.


About our sponsor: Hofstra University is an engine for research and innovation, combining a Center for Entrepreneurship, a Center for Innovation, the expertise of its faculty, the energy of its students and the state-of- the-art resources of its schools of engineering and applied science, business, law and medicine to drive and transform the region’s economy. Visit us.



A boy of principles: Not many high schoolers can offer documented proof that they’re among the best in the world at something. But not many high schoolers are William Banai, a sophomore at Half Hollow Hills High School East in Dix Hills who earned “Top 10 In the World” honors at the 2018 DECA International Career Development Conference.

Competing against students from around the globe, William completed a rigorous 100-question exam and delivered two topic-specific, leadership-focused speeches – each with only 10 minutes’ prep time – to earn a top spot in the Principles of Business Administration category.

DECA Inc. is a nonprofit, career-focused student organization with a 60-year history and more than 215,000 members in the United States, Canada, China, Germany, Guam, Mexico, Puerto Rico and Spain. The ICDC, held in April in Atlanta, networked more than 10,000 students and thousands of teachers, advisors and business leaders for college and career exhibitions, business-themed competitions, 21st century skill-building workshops and, for the teachers and advisors, new professional-development opportunities.

Affording it: Some $25.6 million in state funds has been awarded to four Long Island affordable-housing developments, which together are slated to create 239 new affordable homes.

The funding was included in $200 million-plus in grant awards the state announced Thursday, earmarked for projects that will build or preserve more than 2,800 affordable apartments across New York’s 10 economic zones. The awards are part of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s five-year, $20 billion housing and anti-homelessness strategy.

“This investment is … a giant step forward in our efforts to increase access to homes for families, seniors and our most vulnerable men and women across the state,” Cuomo said Thursday. “These resources will help the region build affordable, stronger, better neighborhoods for our residents for generations to come.”



Bio-bridge: The Long Island BioMentor Initiative – combining the business-development might of SBU’s Center for Biotechnology, Accelerate Long Island and a host of regional R&D powerhouses – has gone legit.

Planning stage: A seven-figure grant from a defunct design institute’s “legacy” foundation will help redesign NYIT’s architecture-degree programs, and tie them into a wide range of academic disciplines.

It’s only human: Prick Henry Schein, and it will bleed – but even a slight income drop can’t stop the Melville-based global distributor from posting another impressive quarter.



Feinstein Institute scientists are breaking critical neural codes and Gov. Cuomo is breaking President Trump’s chops on offshore drilling – and speaking of offshore, a new sub-sea fiber cable is connecting Long Island to the world, but bypassing the Big Apple.

Well read: Like this newsletter? So do we. Keep the good (and informative) times going by forwarding it wherever possible – and encourage your team to subscribe for free.



Best in class: The 2018 U.S. News and World Report’s rundown of the best 500 public high schools for STEM education features 36 in New York State – including 10 on Long Island.

On the air: Offering fresh customer data and insights, innovative Advanced Television Systems Committee broadcast-signal standards may spark a broadcasting renaissance.

Pot lot: Still awaiting a town building permit, a second medical marijuana dispensary proposed for Nassau County has cleared a parking hurdle in North Hempstead.

Positive charge: Promising an end-to-end trip without exiting to recharge, new electric-vehicle recharging stations are coming to the New York State Thruway.



+ Denette Pollock has been promoted to senior vice president of sales at The Advantage Group in Melville. The 17-year company veteran moved up from vice president.

+ Jack Britvan, president of Jericho-based Commercial Realty Services of Long Island, has been elected president of the New York City/Long Island Chapter of The New York State Commercial Association of Realtors.

+ Colleen Cappelli has been promoted to senior vice president and controller at The Advantage Group in Melville. She joined the firm in 2009.

+ Michael Bignami II has joined Ronkonkoma-based Campolo, Middleton & McCormick as an associate after working at the firm as a summer associate and a law clerk.

+ Christine Price has joined Garden City-based Moritt Hock & Hamroff as an associate in its Commercial Lending and Real Estate practice groups. She was previously an associate at Lawrence and Walsh in Manhattan.

+ Leslie Berkoff, a partner at Garden City-based Moritt Hock & Hamroff, has been appointed to co-chair the Mediation Committee of the New York State Bar Association.

+ Suzanne LeBlanc, president  of the Long Island Children’s Museum in Garden City, has been elected president of the board of the Troy-based Museum Association of New York.

+ Signature Bank in Garden City has announced three new hires: Peter Clemente is now group director and senior vice president, after serving as senior VP and group head of corporate banking at Melville-based Israel Discount Bank; Maria Barone is now a senior client associate after serving as assistant vice president at Israel Discount Bank; and Lance Bravin is now a relationship manager after serving as a key account manager, drug channel, at Dora’s Naturals Inc. in New Jersey.



A woman’s touch: There’s no better way to impress Mom this Mother’s Day than with a fantastic bottle of wine made by a top female winemaker.

Bottle bargains: Speaking of finer wines, stop being suckered by the pretty bottles and learn how to conquer a wine shop.

Healthy cuts: Navigating healthcare’s cost-cutting conundrum, with Northwell Health Executive VP Mark Solazzo and other leading industry COOs.

No faking: Our news is as real as it gets – but it ain’t free. So please support the great institutions that support Innovate LI, like Hofstra University, where economic-development veep Mark Lesko is a mad scientist of innovation.