No. 536: On workforces, new outbreaks and Sting – and OMG, we’re up for a BOLI 

Sumner kind of wonderful: Rock icon Gordon Sumner, known best as Police frontman Sting, was born 69 years ago today.


Bad news, good news: The pandemic rages, the NFL season teeters on the brink and so does the republic – but weep not, dear reader, for this taxing workweek nears its end, and another autumnal weekend awaits.

Peace out: The Gandhi man can.

Yes, it’s Friday out there, Oct. 2 to be precise, and we wish one and all – even bullies, even cowardly leaders who incite violence – a serene International Day of Non-Violence, marking the birthdate of Indian lawyer and political ethicist Mohandas Gandhi, the immortal symbol of peaceful resistance.

“Batmobile” is taken: So you’ll have to be a little more creative on National Name Your Car Day, held this and every Oct. 2.

Dynamic doings: Speaking of heroic creativity, underappreciated Serbian innovator Nikola Tesla scored a U.S. patent trifecta on this date in 1888, securing his “system of electrical distribution,” “dynamo electric machine” and “dynamo motor.”

For Pete’s sake: Beatrix Potter’s “The Tale of Peter Rabbit,” the golden carrot at the heart of a $500 million retail empire, was first published in London on Oct. 2, 1902.

Kickoff: Known now as the politically correct Washington Football Team, the future Washington Redskins – then called the Braves and based in Boston – played their first National Football League game on this date in 1935.

Star turn: Succeeded today by the American Museum of Natural History’s Hayden Sphere, the original Hayden Planetarium opened in New York City on that exact same day – Oct. 2, 1935.

Divine Rod: Serling, in the middle ground between light and shadow.

It’s another dimension, Charlie Brown: Two classics of popular American entertainment debuted on this date. First was Charles Schulz’s all-time comic strip “Peanuts,” known as “Li’l Folks” when it launched in nine U.S. newspapers on Oct. 2, 1950.

Then, on this date in 1959, Rod Serling’s creepy sci-fi anthology “The Twilight Zone” premiered on the CBS Television Network (tonight’s episode: “Where is Everybody?”).

Better than good: And it was Oct. 2, 1967, when the first African American associate justice on the U.S. Supreme Court, Thurgood Marshall, was sworn in.

Sweating to the oldies: Before there was Pilates, there was Eliza Maria Mosher.

Let’s get physical: Pioneering American health expert Eliza Maria Mosher (1846-1928) – a physician, inventor, author and educator whose physical fitness focus was years ahead of its time – would be 174 years old today.

In addition to the aforementioned Mahatma (1869-1948), other innovators born on Oct. 2 include Scottish chemist Sir William Ramsay (1852-1916), a Nobel laureate who essentially discovered noble gasses; former U.S. Rep. Ruth Bryan Owen (1885-1954), the first woman to serve abroad as an American ambassador; German-American engineer, science writer and cryptozoologist Willy Ley (1906-1969), who founded the German Rocket Society before fleeing the Nazis; and world-renowned photographer Anna-Lou “Annie” Leibovitz (born 1949), the defining celebrity portraitist of our day.

Every breath you take: And take a bow, Gordon Sumner – the British singer, songwriter and actor known best as rock star Sting turns 69 today.

Send a Message in a Bottle to the distinctive voice of the Police at, where Roxanne would be thrilled (and we wouldn’t be So Lonely) if you’d include some story tips and calendar events – in fact, we’d be Walking on the Moon (you don’t want us Driven to Tears, do you?).


About our sponsor: The Long Island Business Development Council has helped build the regional economy for 50 years by bringing together government economic-development officials, developers, financial experts and others for education, debate and networking.



We approve this message: Nobody’s more surprised than us, dear readers, or more humbled – but Innovate Long Island has been nominated for a 2021 Best of Long Island Award, as bestowed by the good folks over at Bethpage Federal Credit Union.

The BOLIs are the largest business-awards program in Long Island history, honoring LI’s best restaurants, barber shops, authors, television reporters, podcasts, bagels, shoe stores, accounting firms … it goes on a while. Suffice it to say, the categories are many and participation is vast – winners are chosen by you, the people, with upwards of 1 million votes cast annually.

The 2020 polls are open now through Dec. 15, with voters encouraged to log on daily and support their favorites in 14 “Winner Categories” (and hundreds of subcategories – we’ve been nominated for Long Island’s Best Blog, a juicy title found among BOLI’s Arts & Entertainment categories).

The blog competition is varied and fierce – impressive efforts abound – but we believe our focused and plentiful content, intense reader interaction and longevity (Kominicki flipped the switch six years ago already!) make us worthy of the crown. So, like the man once said, vote early and vote often … and thank you, sincerely, for the honor of a nomination. May the best blog win!

Lens crafty: From the Two Birds, One Stone Department comes the Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency, which has greenlighted an incentives package that will help not one but two Long Island companies stay local.

The IDA has issued preliminary approval for a transaction that will assist Huntington Station-based optical lens-cleaning products specialist Koala Optics and Bay Shore-based snack food manufacturer Yoleez Snacks acquire a 33,540-square-foot facility on Commerce Drive in Hauppauge. The $8 million purchase-and-renovation plan will retrofit the building to suit each company’s individual needs – new R&D capabilities for 2015 startup Koala, new food-prep and packaging lines for 2014 startup Yoleez, expanded warehousing and distribution for both.

A full IDA review and final approvals are pending. But with the co-habitation plan slated to create 23 new full-time jobs in just two years, and keep two homegrown companies that might have otherwise fled right here on Long Island, chalk this up as a multifaceted no-brainer, according to Suffolk IDA Deputy Executive Director Kelly Morris. “Manufacturing is alive and well on Long Island,” Morris said Wednesday. “With the IDA’s assistance, manufacturers like Koala Optics and Yoleez Snacks can remain Long Island-based companies, keeping their jobs, investments and overall impact to our economy right here.”



Right place, right time: With their deft online coding classes, We Connect the Dots and the Nebula Academy are answering a pandemic-fueled workforce need.

See them coming: Northwell Health is spreading around its new machine-learning “predictive tool,” which can spot COVID outbreaks weeks before they happen.

Innovation in the Age of Coronavirus: Virus-tracking mobile apps, over-the-line wedding receptions and more … until there’s a vaccine, there’s Long Island’s one-and-only pandemic primer.



Best chance to outsmart climate change; best practices to outlast cyber criminals.



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

From Massachusetts: Boston-based sensor specialist Tekscan introduces wireless in-shoe pressure-mapping system, a big step for gait analyis.

From New Mexico: Albuquerque-based tech startup Parental Values innovates child protection with online-monitoring, family locator and safe-driving apps.

From California: An inventive Los Angeles dad revolutionizes remote learning with multi-device picture-in-picture facilitator TutorCam.



Tiffani Blake

+ Tiffani Blake has been promoted to assistant provost of student engagement and development at the Old Westbury-based New York Institute of Technology. She previously served as interim assistant provost of student engagement and development.

+ Geraldine DelPrete has been promoted to chief marketing officer at Woodbury-based SterlingRisk Insurance. She previously served as director of programs/senior vice president.

+ Stephanie Cooper has been hired as a plastic and reconstructive surgeon at Woodbury-based Greenberg Cosmetic Surgery and Dermatology. She previously was an owner and surgeon at Generations Plastic Surgery in Manhattan.

+ Robert Posner has been hired as a partner at Jericho-based Grassi. He was previously a partner at Hauppauge-based Albrecht, Viggiano, Zurich & Co.

+ Melville-based H2M architects + engineers has made two hires: Shannah Sherman has been named a project engineer; she previously served as a senior mechanical engineer at Hauppauge-based DSM Engineering Associates. Charlotte Kuhl has been named a staff engineer; she previously interned at Buffalo-based Buffalo Niagra Waterkeeper.

+ Josephine Geraci has been appointed chairwoman of the Ronkonkoma-based Suffolk County Women’s Business Enterprise Coalition. She is the founder and president of Cold Spring Harbor-based My Mom Knows Best.


BELOW THE FOLD (From The Weather Desk Edition)

Hazy dreamscape: Uncertain much?

Long-range forecasting: Why European scientists want to publicly circulate free weather data.

Sunnier skies: How a national climate bank could save the environment and the economy.

Cloudy, with a chance of crushing emotion: What your weather dreams are trying to tell you.

Taking the temperature: The Long Island Regional Economic Development Council, one of the amazing organizations that support Innovate LI, has been measuring (and maintaining) the regional business climate for more than five decades. Check them out.