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College students: Reduce your school’s carbon footprint, get $1M

Student-led coalitions will develop million-dollar ideas in a new statewide competition to cut down greenhouse gas emissions on New York State college and university campuses and beyond. Calling climate change “one of the most defining issues of our time,” Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the competition on Friday, challenging students to “aggressively reduce” emissions and offering three $1 million prizes to help winning coalitions implement their ideas. “Our state’s college students have a pivotal role to…


The Debrief: Lawrence Weber, innovation psychotherapist

First and foremost a scientist, Lawrence Weber – who studied physical chemistry at Michigan State University and nucleic acids during a postdoctoral fellowship at MIT – takes an analytical approach to his dual roles as the business development manager of both Stony Brook University’s Center for Excellence in Wireless and Information Technology and the university’s Sensor CAT, a NYSTAR-supported Center for Advanced Technology focused on material and logistical resources. But for SBU’s first-ever entrepreneur-in-residence, who…


Behind our sunny jobs rate, storm clouds

By JOHN L. KOMINICKI // Long Island’s rosy 4.5 percent unemployment rate – the lowest since 2007 – masks a wide range of unsettling workforce trends. Earnings for private sector workers are declining, total employment participation is down and the pool of best-qualified workers – those aged 35 to 65 – will drop by more than 10 percent over the next five years as the Island continues to gray. A continuing shift in the local…


Gorilla Toolz: Not quite 800 pounds, but just wait

By GREGORY ZELLER // Today’s lesson from the high-speed, high-tech world: If it ain’t broke, fix it anyway. That’s the emerging game plan of software developer Gorilla Toolz, which was doing just fine, thank you, customizing marketing- and sales-management platforms for a range of top-tier corporate clients, but is now angling to capitalize on the technological revolution taking place in a previously unconsidered sector. The pivot comes courtesy of an unexpected healthcare-sector client that inquired about…


TPP deal reached; Congress a question mark

The United States and 11 of its trading partners reached an historic accord Monday that will lift 18,000 tariffs on U.S. exports, presenting a potential boom for businesses of all sizes. The so-called Trans-Pacific Partnership pact, the most-sweeping trade deal since 1993’s NAFTA accord, is with Australia, Brunei, Canada, Chile, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore and Vietnam. About 45 percent of U.S. exports already go to those countries, suggesting the deal could be…


Sharestates muscles into peer-to-peer Top 10

By GREGORY ZELLER // Bulked up with an added $20 million from its chief institutional investor, Great Neck-based Sharestates has cracked the top 10 of U.S. real estate crowdfunders, according to Lend Academy, the authoritative online data hub for peer-to-peer lending. In a report published this month, Lend Academy said Sharestates funded 33 projects and originated $32.3 million in deals between June and August, recording $15.5 million in August loan originations alone. That puts the Long…


Teaching to the truth: Nowadays, we’re all in sales

By GREGORY ZELLER // It’s a big world getting smaller – one of several critical lessons in the modern marketing classroom. As social media and other online avenues regularly smudge international borders, the way humans market their products and services is being constantly redefined – regardless of what’s being marketed or where. And make no mistake, noted Rajib Sanyal, dean of the Robert B. Willumstad School of Business at Garden City’s Adelphi University, “everyone out…


LI Water Conference sets Oct. 22 colloquium

Joan Leary Matthews, head of clean water efforts for the EPA’s New York and New Jersey region, will headline the annual Long Island Water Conference symposium, set for Oct. 22 at Bethpage State Park’s Carlyle on the Green facility. The public is invited. Details on registration are below. The meeting comes amid growing concern for the Island’s fresh water aquifers, which suffer from rising levels of nitrogen from lawn and farm fertilizers and contamination from flushed…


Summertime, and the innovation was easy

By GREGORY ZELLER // If you’re looking for economic indicators from within the innovation space, consider the sizzling summer just wrapped by Intelligent Product Solutions, the Hauppauge-based product design and development firm. The official numbers aren’t fully tallied yet, but well-laid plans, a long-awaited boost from the company’s Seattle satellite and some fortuitous timing created a perfect summer storm of momentum and opportunity, according to president Mitch Maiman. “Summer has classically been a relatively slow…


Albany funding affordable housing in storm areas

With Hurricane Joaquin positioning itself for a potential East Cost strike, Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday announced a new $20 million program to support eligible affordable-housing projects in areas ravaged by previous tropical events, including 2012’s devastating Hurricane Sandy. Citing damage caused not only by the historic superstorm but by Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee – which struck just weeks apart in 2011 – the governor invited qualified housing developers in 33 New York…


Enjoying the not-too-sweet taste of success

By GREGORY ZELLER // Given that he’s American and draws a breath, it’s no surprise Kyle Chandler likes beer. And given that he’s a Long Islander during the Island’s craft-beverage renaissance, it follows that Chandler enjoys small-batch microbrews. In fact, he counts the proprietors of several Island brewpubs – including Riverhead’s Moustache Brewing Co. and Patchogue’s Blue Point Brewing Co. – among his friends, and volunteers often to help them at craft festivals and other…


Monday Debrief: Bruce Stillman. The Man.

There’s barely enough room on the Internet to list Bruce Stillman’s educational credentials and professional accomplishments – his list of awards and honors runs the length of your typical DNA strand. Suffice it to say: In the annals of scientific research, particularly cellular-structure research, the Australian-born biochemist is The Man. Under his watch, CSHL has been ranked the nation’s No. 1 institution for molecular biology and genetics research; it’s also grown into an essential role…


Apps surpass TV as America’s favorite pastime

By DAN BOWEN // The intersection of connectivity, app functionality and mobility have given rise to a new phenomenon. Call it interactive, call it enhanced or social. Whatever you name it, it’s changed the way we watch TV. Just how big is the impact? Huge. Today, 78 percent of Americans watch traditional TV while using another device. And most of us do it on a regular basis. The practice is especially common among smartphone users,…


SilvermanAcampora launches compliance group

By GREGORY ZELLER // By popular demand, business law firm SilvermanAcampora has launched a new practice group to help clients navigate the choppy waters of government compliance. The Jericho firm’s new Government Contracts & Compliance Group will help businesses – particularly those in the aerospace and defense markets – realize the lucrative potential of supplying goods and services to local, federal, state and even foreign governments, while meeting their often-tricky requirements. The new group is…


Answering our ‘pent-up need’ for new industry

By JOHN L. KOMINICKI // A proposed $300 million center on bioelectronic research would get a $50 million jolt if Albany follows recommendations made this week by a group of business and government leaders. The group, which includes both country executives, Long Island Association chief Kevin Law and five other members, was formed to suggest ways to spend $550 million in state funding that has been earmarked for “transformative” projects downstate. Topping their list was a…