No. 513: On research funding in a crisis, Christmas in June and baseball (in August, maybe)

Canadian high: Still the tallest freestanding structure in the Western Hemisphere, Toronto's CN Tower -- then the world's tallest -- opened to the public on June 26, 1976.


June swoon: Welcome to Friday, dear readers, as we wrap up a sultry workweek in Phase 3 of Long Island’s pandemic recovery and anticipate the first full weekend of Summer 2020.

Going Fourth: Your regularly scheduled Innovate LI newsletters resume July 6. Have a happy and a healthy.

Independent thought: It’s June 26 out there, which is of course Independence Day in both Madagascar and Somalia.

Here in the States, Independence Day is one week from tomorrow – and with that in mind, Innovate LI will be taking next week to clean our grills and line up our sparklers. Watch for your regularly scheduled Calendar Newsletter on Monday (June 29), and we’ll be back on the beat with another July 6.

Sticking it to them: Pro-vax pioneer Zabdiel Boylston of Boston inoculated his son and two slaves using a controversial smallpox vaccine on June 26, 1721.

Zabdiel, who ultimately (and successfully) inoculated as many as 250 Bostonians, suffered numerous anti-vax threats and confrontations, including a hand grenade attack on his home.

A dip in the yule: Swim a few laps, then towel off and share some summery Christmas warmth – Dec. 25 was declared a federal holiday by Congress on June 26, 1870.

Before Mercedes: There was Benz – as in Karl Benz, the German engineer who earned the first U.S. patent for a gasoline-powered motor vehicle (a three-wheeled motorcycle) on this date in 1888.

True story: Karl also went as “Carl,” when the mood struck, and that’s the name on the patent.

Historic: Still storming at Surf and 10th.

Roll with it: This is also a big date for Coney Island’s Cyclone rollercoaster, which opened to the public on June 26, 1927, and proudly joined the National Register of Historic Places on June 26, 1991.

We’ve CN bigger: Now merely the world’s ninth-tallest freestanding structure, Downtown Toronto’s CN Tower – which loomed for 32 years as mankind’s tallest thing – opened to the public 44 years ago today.

Golly genome: And it was June 26, 2000, when the first rough draft of the human genome was released by the long-gestating Human Genome Project.

The announcement, made at the White House, included comments from U.S. President Bill Clinton, British Prime Minister Tony Blair and famed American biotechnologist Craig Venter.

Star man: French astronomer deluxe Charles Messier (1730-1817) – who compiled more than 100 galaxies, nebulae and star clusters into his Messier Catalogue, a 1794 masterwork still referenced as a useful astronomical tool – would be 290 years old today.

Goonies: Davi (with hat) and Zeller (with hair!), back in the day.

Also born on June 26 were decorated Union general and U.S. Civil War hero Abner Doubleday (1819-1893), who did not invent baseball; American aeronautical engineer and entrepreneur William Lear (1902-1978), who founded the Lear Jet Corp.; American chemist Roy Plunkett (1910-1994), who invented Teflon; floppy disk inventor Yoshiro NakaMats (born 1928), “Japan’s Edison” and the progenitor of 3,000-plus patents; and American doctor Bernard Harris Jr. (born 1956), the first African-American to walk in space.

Deep Davi: And take a bow, Robert John Davi! The American actor, writer, director, classically trained singer and outspoken political conservative – memorable as a Bond villain, a “Die Hard” fed and a million tough guys in between – turns 69 today.

Give these and all the other June 26 innovators your best at Give us the story tips and calendar listings, please and thank you.


About our sponsor: Whether it’s helping in site selection, cutting through red tape or finding innovative ways to meet specific needs, businesses that settle in the Town of Islip soon learn that we take a proactive approach to seeing them succeed. If your business wants to locate or expand in a stable community with great quality of life, then it’s time you took a closer look at Islip.



Trans America: (From left) David Rosenthal and Sundeep Boparai of the Northwell Health Physician Partners LGBTQ Transgender Program.

LGBTQ A-OK: Long Island’s transgender community now has its own healthcare mecca.

Northwell Health has christened the Island’s first health center dedicated to transgender care, a 3,000-square-foot New Hyde Park office – officially opened this month in honor of LGBTQ Pride Month – that gives the circa-2016 Northwell Health Physician Partners LGBTQ Transgender Health Program its first official home. The Lakeville Road facility includes four exam rooms, eight office/consultation rooms and two gender-neutral restrooms, and is staffed by an MD, a primary-care physician, two “trans-health navigators” and a host of providers of different physical and mental specialties.

The new center, which offers both adult and pediatric care, is designed specifically to serve the “thousands of individuals living on Long Island who identify as transgender, gender nonconforming and non-binary,” according to David Rosenthal, medical director of the Center for Transgender Care at Northwell Health. “This is an underserved community that has specific healthcare needs.”

Thanks a clot: Researchers analyzing data from a previous clinical trial have discovered that extended use of a common blood thinner could reduce the occurrence of often-fatal blood clots – a particular risk for patients recovering from COVID-19.

Discharged hospital patients, “especially discharged [COVID-19] patients,” are at higher risk for major thromboembolic events – a.k.a. blood clots. But new research published Monday in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology “shows promise” in the extended use of rivaroxaban, an oral anticoagulant used widely to prevent strokes, pulmonary embolism and similar conditions, according to the Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research, Northwell Health’s R&D mothership.

Specifically, an international team of multidisciplinary specialists led by Feinstein Institutes Professor Alex Spyropoulos determined that extended rivaroxaban treatments (10 mg for an additional 45 days) reduced strokes, myocardial infarctions and other potentially fatal cardiovascular episodes by 28 percent. “We are encouraged by the study’s results,” Spyropoulos noted. “Through this research, Northwell Health has adapted its treatment policy for discharged COVID-19 patients and others at risk.”



Smarter research: Master of Innovation Mitch Maiman on why current research-funding models sometimes miss the mark in a crisis – and how to fix that.

Lower Orbit: Net income and earnings are in freefall, but Hauppauge-based electronics manufacturer Orbit International has a plan to gain some altitude.

Innovation in the Age of Coronavirus: Quarantines for visitors, help for Suffolk families and no more free rides in Nassau – it’s the pandemic recovery, Island-style.



Raise a glass to the winners of the first-ever Craft Beer Marketing Awards (including two from Long Island).



Innovate LI’s inbox overrunneth with inspirational innovations from all North American corners. This week’s brightest out-of-towners:

From California: San Francisco-based app-maker MiLegacy cultivates a library of your digital life with a new multimedia app.

From Illinois: Chicago-based product designer HidrateSpark introduces “the world’s smartest water bottle.”

From Oklahoma: Tulsa-based SaaS platform Me in 3 connects with fraternities and sororities struggling with recruitment in the Age of Coronavirus.



Lee Peretz

+ Lee Peretz has been promoted to director of marketing and business development at Uniondale-based Farrell Fritz. He previously served as the firm’s business-development manager.

+ Andrew Flescher has been appointed vice chair of the Ethics Committee for the United Network for Organ Sharing. He serves as professor of Family, Population and Preventive Medicine and professor of English at Stony Brook University.

+ Stuart Lubow has been promoted to president of Dime Community Bank in Melville. He previously served as senior executive vice president and chief banking officer.

+ Michele Rizzo-Berg has been hired as theater director for the Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts in Patchogue. She previously served as center director for the YMCA Boulton Center for the Performing Arts in Bay Shore.

+ Adriana Valencia has been hired as a bilingual social worker at the Garden City- based Adelphi NY Statewide Breast Cancer Hotline and Support Program. She previously served as a supervising social worker at Lenox Hill Neighborhood House in Manhattan.

+ John Romano has been promoted to executive vice president and chief retail officer at Dime Community Bank in Melville. He previously served as senior vice president of business banking.

+ Howard Leff has been hired as senior counsel at Garden City-based Quatela Chimeri. He previously served as principal at East Rockaway-based Howard Leff P.C.



Oh boycott: Will burned fans take back Major League Baseball?

Home: We’ve seen the post-pandemic home of the future, and it’s wild.

Work: Physics-based industries have felt the pandemic’s effects, and it’s mild.

Play: Baseball is back – but fans saw what happened, and they’re riled.

Covering the bases: Please continue supporting the amazing organizations that support Innovate LI, including the Town of Islip Office of Economic Development – from economic-assistance opportunities to workforce-development issues, the entrepreneur’s ultimate teammate. Check them out.