BNMC’s Pledge for Racial Equity

BNMC’s Pledge for Racial Equity

During this heartbreaking time for our city and country, standing together as one community is more important than ever. We believe strongly in the need for diversity and the importance of inclusion. We are firmly against any form of racial injustice and hatred, and we pledge to speak up and speak out when we see this hwp-contentening in our community and beyond.
The BNMC has always believed that by continuing to build a welcoming and inclusive environment, people are inspired and empowered to be their most creative and innovative selves. And yet, we’re ever so aware that we’re always learning, always growing, and always challenging ourselves to be better tomorrow than we are today.
Today, we are reaffirming our strongly held beliefs in promoting justice for all people.
The BNMC’s pledge:
  • We will engage our community to enhance diversity, inclusion, and respect for every person.
  • We will break down barriers, push boundaries, and work as advocates for change.
  • We will create an inclusive environment that will seek cooperative collaborations and community-based solutions.
  • We will commit to an intentional and ongoing dialogue about racial injustice among our staff, partners and stakeholders.
We stand with you because you are a part of us. If you do not receive justice, neither do we. We promise to continue working together with our partners to create a better and more inclusive Buffalo.

How ‘innovation districts’ are continuing the fight against COVID-19

How ‘innovation districts’ are continuing the fight against COVID-19

Local research and discoveries relating to COVID-19 were featured recently in a blog from the Global Institute on Innovation Districts (GIID) and published by the Brookings Institute. Work being done at the University at Buffalo, Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, and local companies Rapid Medical Parts and Innosek were included.

The BNMC is a steering member of the Global Institute on Innovation Districts, a global network of practitioners. Our work with these international leaders provides strategic connections around the world.

 

 

BNMC to Host Annual Last Minute Holiday Market on December 19

Join us for our annual Last Minute Holiday Market

on December 19th!

WHAT

‘Tis the season to buy local! Stop by our annual holiday market to pick out unique gifts for your friends and family. Interested in tabling at this event? Vendors must register by December 16th at ICgiftmarket.eventbrite.com.

WHERE

dig at the Innovation Center, 640 Ellicott St., 1st floor

WHEN

December 19th from 11:30am-1:30pm

DETAILS

All participating vendors are locally owned-small businesses. We will have lunch available for purchase from our Collision Cafe vendors, including Lime House, R&R BBQ and Green Eats Kitchen.

 

 

 

BNMC’s Healthy Communities Team Attends USDA Agriculture and Marketing Summit

BNMC’s Healthy Communities Team Attends USDA Agriculture and Marketing Summit

In early October, the BNMC Healthy Communities team attended the USDA Agriculture and Marketing Summit in Rosemont, IL, as one of 44 organizations in the United States that received the Local Foods Promotion Program (LFPP) Grant. This conference was a platform to connect with other grantees, learn best practices in promoting local food, and attend a tour of Local Foods grocery store.

We had the opportunity to meet with farmers working as agents of change to solve problems in their regional food systems. Some were creating technology solutions and another established a cost-sharing model equated to “Uber for farmers” to streamline distribution efforts. Flannel seemed to be a prominent clothing choice!

BNMC was one of only a few institutions in attendance, and the only organization focused on bringing local food to health care.

Farm-to-School in Boulder Valley

One of the institutions BNMC met with was Boulder Valley School District in Boulder, CO, who sources over 25% of its food from a 50-mile radius to feed its more than 31,000 students with scratch cooked meals. Our team learned about the various promotional events BVSD hosts to support the success of their local foods program and how they educate parents and the greater community about these efforts. These events included almost 40 field trips for students, staff, and parents to local farms; school food festivals with recipes from the cafeteria; hosting “Community Conversations” for farmers to connect with consumers; and 200+ education events the school hosts for parents and community each year to share the project widely. Other than promoting local foods, another major aspect of their program is focusing on only hormone and antibiotic free meats, as well as only using vendors offering RPC’s (re-useable plastic containers). Although this model was from a school-setting, many of the practices at the school level can be translated into hospital and healthcare.

A Truly Local Grocery Store

Also included in the conference was a tour of Local Foods, a Chicago-based grocery store focused on sourcing products that are locally sourced, locally processed, and from ethical producers and suppliers for non-local items. The tour included a lunch featuring the best quality seasonal foods from mid-west farmers and a behind-the-scenes look at their impressive operations, storage, and tracking mechanisms. Local Foods has a whole animal butchery, which purchases and uses the whole animal to sell in their retail location since these items cannot go through the distribution channel. This is beneficial for ranchers as by purchasing the entire animal ranchers aren’t stuck with trying to sell the remaining parts of the animal. For the consumer, it means higher quality, better tasting meat, and a known source to where one’s meal came from. No more mystery meat!

Fresh Ideas for FreshTakes

On the last day of the conference, we attended a panel discussion on promoting and marketing local foods by three companies in the greater “Chicagoland” region, featuring Local Foods, Mighty Vine Tomatoes, and Farmer’s Fridge. This was a special moment for the BNMC team as the Farmers Fridge model was the inspiration for bringing the FreshTakes Smart Fridge to the Medical Campus. We fan-crushed a little bit, and bought their salads and snacks from the fridge in the Chicago O’Hare airport. It did not diswp-contentoint! From the panel, the team learned better ways to promote the FreshTakes smart fridges on Campus as well as how to break the traditional stereotype for vending machines being unhealthy. Additionally, based off of the Mighty Vine Tomatoes and Local Foods model, we will share successful industry practices with our community partners all in the WNY regional food system.

 

Your Innovation Center Presents: IC Success!

Your Innovation Center Presents: IC Success!

These NEW workshops are facilitated by minority & women owned small businesses, and designed to inspire creativity, leadership and entrepreneurial thinking in an inclusive, welcoming environment.

FREE childcare will be provided by ABC Learn & Play from 6:15-8:15pm for every session!

Registration is required via the links below.

Digital Media Marketing with Crews Control Media 

Tuesdays from 6:30-8pm  | October 15th-November 19th
Register

Financial Literacy & Credit Building with Clarity Credit Repair

Thursdays from 6:30-8pm | October 17th-November 21st
Register

Details:

Refreshments provided for attendees.

Plenty of on-street parking is available outside the Innovation Center, as well as in the parking lot across the street. We are also a short walk from the Allen/Medical Campus NFTA station and along several bus routes.

BNMC’s Innovation Center Buzzes with Activity!

BNMC’s Innovation Center Buzzes with Activity!

This summer at BNMC’s Innovation Center was jam packed with events, programming, and new companies from all over the country and world who joined our growing community! The BNMC team made sure that there was no shortage of networking and collaboration opportunities hosted throughout the building and around Campus. These complimentary programs are just a small part of what we offer to our tenants, partners, and surrounding communities at the Innovation Center. Here are a some of highlights from the summer of 2019 on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus:

New Companies Join the IC Community! 

In the last few months, we welcomed several new companies to the Innovation Center with a number of exciting announcements coming soon! We’re honored to be the new home for remote workers for tech giants, not-for-profits, entrepreneurs, creatives, and international companies landing in Buffalo from the UK, Brazil, and Canada. New companies to our IC community include: SparkOrange + Salesforce, DigitalOcean, The Avenue Code, and Hustle Athletics.

Startup Grind with Glenn Jackson of M&T Bank

On July 24th, the BNMC welcomed Glenn Jackson, Chief Diversity Officer at M&T Bank to the IC as our featured guest at Startup Grind Buffalo. Startup Grind, the world’s largest network of entrepreneurs, is hosted monthly at the IC and features networking opportunities and a fireside chat with a special guest. Glenn and I sat down to talk about technology, inclusivity, the future of tech in Buffalo, and what it really means to be a CDO. The conversation was riveting, the networking was unmatched, and the attendance was phenomenal. All of this adds up to make for one fantastic summer event at the Innovation Center!

Startup Grind with Brett Mikoll and Dave Horesh

Our second Startup Grind of the summer featured Oxford Pennant co-founders, Brett Mikoll and Dave Horesh. Oxford Pennant is one of Buffalo’s most exciting and fastest growing brands. This time, I sat down with both Brett and Dave to talk about building a brand through social media, effectively working with giant brands as a startup, managing an overwhelming amount of orders, and the true meaning of collaboration. The community left the Innovation Center that night charged up and ready to take on the world just like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who actually has an Oxford Pennant in every one of his gyms around the world!
 

Small Business Summer School

For upwards of 75 small businesses in Buffalo, Small Business Summer School was in session! Ignite Buffalo, UB CEL, and the BNMC teamed up to offer a complimentary 8-week small business curriculum targeted at covering the most important topics needed to start or run a company. This program attracted small businesses and entrepreneurs from all over WNY. The 8 weeks were cwp-contented off with a top notch graduation ceremony, complete with graduation caps, diplomas, and awards for perfect attendance!
 

Breakfast Blend

The BNMC team hosted three Breakfast Blend events at the IC this summer. Breakfast Blend, in my opinion, is the place to see and be seen! This event offers an amazing breakfast spread, unlimited coffee, updates from companies from within the IC, lots of great news from the community, and a chance to get to know other entrepreneurs and innovators. This is a perfect event to keep a temperature on who is in the building and what they are working on. We are looking forward to the Buffalo Bills themed Breakfast Blend in October!

BNMC’s Innovation Center Buzzes with Activity!

BNMC’s Innovation Center Buzzes with Activity!

This summer at BNMC’s Innovation Center was jam packed with events, programming, and new companies from all over the country and world who joined our growing community! The BNMC team made sure that there was no shortage of networking and collaboration opportunities hosted throughout the building and around Campus. These complimentary programs are just a small part of what we offer to our tenants, partners, and surrounding communities at the Innovation Center. Here are a some of highlights from the summer of 2019 on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus:

New Companies Join the IC Community! 

In the last few months, we welcomed several new companies to the Innovation Center with a number of exciting announcements coming soon! We’re honored to be the new home for remote workers for tech giants, not-for-profits, entrepreneurs, creatives, and international companies landing in Buffalo from the UK, Brazil, and Canada. New companies to our IC community include: SparkOrange + Salesforce, DigitalOcean, The Avenue Code, and Hustle Athletics.

Startup Grind with Glenn Jackson of M&T Bank

On July 24th, the BNMC welcomed Glenn Jackson, Chief Diversity Officer at M&T Bank to the IC as our featured guest at Startup Grind Buffalo. Startup Grind, the world’s largest network of entrepreneurs, is hosted monthly at the IC and features networking opportunities and a fireside chat with a special guest. Glenn and I sat down to talk about technology, inclusivity, the future of tech in Buffalo, and what it really means to be a CDO. The conversation was riveting, the networking was unmatched, and the attendance was phenomenal. All of this adds up to make for one fantastic summer event at the Innovation Center!

Startup Grind with Brett Mikoll and Dave Horesh

Our second Startup Grind of the summer featured Oxford Pennant co-founders, Brett Mikoll and Dave Horesh. Oxford Pennant is one of Buffalo’s most exciting and fastest growing brands. This time, I sat down with both Brett and Dave to talk about building a brand through social media, effectively working with giant brands as a startup, managing an overwhelming amount of orders, and the true meaning of collaboration. The community left the Innovation Center that night charged up and ready to take on the world just like Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, who actually has an Oxford Pennant in every one of his gyms around the world!
 

Small Business Summer School

For upwards of 75 small businesses in Buffalo, Small Business Summer School was in session! Ignite Buffalo, UB CEL, and the BNMC teamed up to offer a complimentary 8-week small business curriculum targeted at covering the most important topics needed to start or run a company. This program attracted small businesses and entrepreneurs from all over WNY. The 8 weeks were cwp-contented off with a top notch graduation ceremony, complete with graduation caps, diplomas, and awards for perfect attendance!
 

Breakfast Blend

The BNMC team hosted three Breakfast Blend events at the IC this summer. Breakfast Blend, in my opinion, is the place to see and be seen! This event offers an amazing breakfast spread, unlimited coffee, updates from companies from within the IC, lots of great news from the community, and a chance to get to know other entrepreneurs and innovators. This is a perfect event to keep a temperature on who is in the building and what they are working on. We are looking forward to the Buffalo Bills themed Breakfast Blend in October!

Celebrating Community at our 3rd Annual Summer Block Party

Celebrating Community at our 3rd Annual Summer Block Party

OK! Normally I have a more formal writing style, but we are fam so I’m going to just hit you with this info. I’m not trying to give you FOMO or anything, but… if you missed BNMC’s 3rd Annual Summer Block Party, you missed a lot! People are saying that it was the best one yet. It had everything that makes a great party. View our Facebook photo album to see all the smiling faces!

Great venue: The weather was a perfect 73 degrees with a slight breeze on August 22nd at Kaminski Park & Gardens at Roswell Park.

Great food: Frank Gourmet Hot Dogs served up nearly 1,000 hot dogs at the event! Aunt Connie’s Ed-U- Kitchen brought her iconic smoothie bike (you know, the one that you get on and it powers the blender to make the smoothie), plus delicious watermelon and salad. James the Ice Cream Dude with his ice cream bike. There is nothing like a Bomb Pop on a summer day!

Great music: DJ P was on the 1’s and 2’s spinning some upbeat tunes. His energy and presence on the mic keep the party going. We also had the A-Team Band who hopped on the instruments and played some hits from the 90s and early 2000s.

Dancing: With music like that you can’t help but dance! We did all the line dances, but Zumba was clearly the biggest hit. Thanks to Kelly Patton for helping us dance some of those calories off.

Games: We had Clown Around Entertainment provide our Carnival Games, face painting, and a dunk tank which the kids and families loved!

The best part of all was the GREAT people. There were almost 1,000 people who attended this year, including employees, patients, students, and neighbors who all came together to create an amazing family-friendly event.

Next year we plan to do it even bigger and better!

Celebrating Community at our 3rd Annual Summer Block Party

Celebrating Community at our 3rd Annual Summer Block Party

OK! Normally I have a more formal writing style, but we are fam so I’m going to just hit you with this info. I’m not trying to give you FOMO or anything, but… if you missed BNMC’s 3rd Annual Summer Block Party, you missed a lot! People are saying that it was the best one yet. It had everything that makes a great party. View our Facebook photo album to see all the smiling faces!

Great venue: The weather was a perfect 73 degrees with a slight breeze on August 22nd at Kaminski Park & Gardens at Roswell Park.

Great food: Frank Gourmet Hot Dogs served up nearly 1,000 hot dogs at the event! Aunt Connie’s Ed-U- Kitchen brought her iconic smoothie bike (you know, the one that you get on and it powers the blender to make the smoothie), plus delicious watermelon and salad. James the Ice Cream Dude with his ice cream bike. There is nothing like a Bomb Pop on a summer day!

Great music: DJ P was on the 1’s and 2’s spinning some upbeat tunes. His energy and presence on the mic keep the party going. We also had the A-Team Band who hopped on the instruments and played some hits from the 90s and early 2000s.

Dancing: With music like that you can’t help but dance! We did all the line dances, but Zumba was clearly the biggest hit. Thanks to Kelly Patton for helping us dance some of those calories off.

Games: We had Clown Around Entertainment provide our Carnival Games, face painting, and a dunk tank which the kids and families loved!

The best part of all was the GREAT people. There were almost 1,000 people who attended this year, including employees, patients, students, and neighbors who all came together to create an amazing family-friendly event.

Next year we plan to do it even bigger and better!

How is your organization is going to attract the best and brightest talent?

Enterprisetechsuccess Magazine

How is your organization going to attract the best and brightest talent?

The race for talent today means that corporations will have to use novel methods to attract new talent. From sponsoring technology schools to hiring experienced expat knowledge workers to return back home so they can retool their organizations. Firms will begin to retool their legacy office spaces and hire architecture firms to create a new vibe allowing for more creativity that will attract and retain talent. Firms will begin to rebrand their organizations to be a cool and unique organization that uses the latest and greatest in culture, healthy living and a focus on the employee wants and needs.  New roles like Ambassador of Buzz and Chief Curator establish a vibe to attract talent from Bay Area tech firms. Corporations will begin to reduce their dependence on off-shore tech companies and consulting firms and move forward to build in-house innovation departments. Corporations will need to increase corporate spending on retraining of mature employee.

So what are some of the steps to help retain and provide your employees a place to separate time and space to innovate?

The first steps needed within an organization prior to beginning your innovation journey is to examine your own team’s innovation readiness.  Some of the best ideas come from your own team members. Many of your own team members with years of domain experience can produce a constant pipeline of ideas that can help your organization disrupt your industry. Your organization also has team members that may not be ready to share their insights due to a legacy corporate culture that does not enable a safe and open and honest conversation to inspire an innovative culture. Building an innovation culture is the first step prior to acquiring an idea management software like Spigit or Ideator. You must consider your organization’s innovation culture. Organizations are prematurely acquiring these types of software to help collect ideas from their own organizations without examining their own team innovation maturity.

Before I explain what an innovation culture is, I should discuss the current state of the public or privately held corporation, colleges / universities and how students are opting out of traditional employment in corporations. Universities and colleges are producing prospective students for corporations. Many of these students are selecting other opportunities like the start-up market that is fast paced, risk filled and, in a fail fast culture. Other reasons are that banks, hospitals, and insurance companies are not attracting the talent needed to backfill retiring employees due to existing legacy technologies stacks and stodgy leadership teams with attitudes that cannot relate to the students’ needs. These needs include latest technologies, flexible work schedules, health and wellness, relaxed dress codes, diverse workforce   and a support system that allows for a culture that helps the community.

The lack of progressive corporate leadership styles are souring many talented prospects from entering the corporate job market. The same legacy corporations that are souring prospective talent have a great deal of influence on the universities and colleges to shape the curriculum to become more creative and innovative. Due to the focus on maintaining the status quo within a firm and the tenure within the firm they take years to make a course correction. When a “Hippo” 1 (highest paid person’s opinion) makes the decisions within an organization the innovation and the culture offer suffers.   The paradox in all of this is that students that graduated 20 years ago from the very universities that were innovative at the time have become so conservative that they have created a culture of status quo to keep the machine running, vs a culture of innovation.

In many corporations the execution of projects is the focus of many of the activities from upgrading business systems to building new production plants, projects are a primary activity within the company.  Corporate projects fall into a few categories: revenue, operations, and compliance, and are run by a project management office or project manager.  A focus on quality, time, and cost ensures when projects are completed. With all the focus on project execution, there is little time for innovation and employees are not taught to think creatively. We are taught to execute on projects and not to fail or rapid learning culture. Business schools teach management principles that were developed in the later industrial revolution to solve the large-company management problem–not the innovation problem 2.  Corporations focused on project execution and maintaining the status quo can overlook talent that comes nontraditional degrees like art, English and history and focused on a traditional employee from accounting, finance, and engineering.  This could be why organizations need to unlearn from the traditional organizational wp-contentroaches and learn how to inspire and mentor talent and begin to build a brand around innovation. Innovation as a culture is an wp-contentroach that needs to be developed from the middle up and top down with total support form executive leadership.  The innovation culture enables teams to fail, create, learn and are giving employees an opportunity to talk freely in a safe environment. What a safety environment provides your employees is a safety net to ask why to anyone in your organization or to experiment on a new business model with support.

The innovation journey doesn’t start with deploying mega trends like AR/VR, deep learning or blockchain, it is about changing the organization’s culture that supports their careers by supporting a separation in time a space to allow innovation of ideas and concepts. Meaning separation of time and space allows employees to leave the organization to fulfill outside interests helping the journey to an innovative culture. Along with understanding your team’s current leadership state of mind, your teams need to be evaluated to determine their ability to innovate. If team members are not motivated or are prepared to help, you will need to provide the tools to unlearn their team style to effectively change the culture. If they cannot or are not willing to change they need to be managed out of the organization.

The organization that changes the scenery and believe that have made a cool space with high end coffee and cool seating arrangements will not move the needle. The organization must challenge employees with work that is inspiring by reducing emails and meetings and exposing employees to work that is stimulating and exciting.

BNMC Elects David Zebro Chair of its Board of Directors

BNMC Elects David Zebro Chair of its Board of Directors

Buffalo, NY – David Zebro, Principal of Strategic Investments & Holdings, Inc., was elected Chair of the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC) Board of Directors at its June meeting last week.

“David is a natural choice to lead the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus as it continues to grow into a thriving Innovation District,” said Anthony B. Martino, immediate past BNMC Board Chair. “His longtime commitment to the institutions on the BNMC and the greater community as a whole give him a unique perspective on this collaborative community asset.”

Zebro served on the BNMC Board from 2004 – 2007 when he was wp-contentointed Chair of the Roswell Park Cancer Institute Corporation’s Board of Directors, and again as the first community at-large member on the BNMC Board from 2013 – 2016. His current term runs for two years with an option by the Board of Directors to renew for up to four more years.

“I am thrilled to continue to be a part of the BNMC,” said Zebro. “I look forward to supporting the organization’s growth and evolution as we seek to have an even greater positive impact in our community and beyond.”

David Zebro Biography (Photo)

David was born in Plattsburgh, New York, attended Plattsburgh High School, and later graduated from the State University College of New York at Plattsburgh with a degree in Political Science. He met his future wife, Susan Mortensen (originally from Kenmore, New York) while studying at SUNY Plattsburgh, and they married in 1973 and moved to Buffalo. David went on to receive an MBA from the University at Buffalo in 1975 with a major in Corporate Finance.

He started his career with Union Carbide and continued to grow his expertise in business/strategic planning, operations, and financial management with other companies in more senior positions.

Since 1984 David has been employed in the private equity sector as a Principal with Strategic Investments & Holdings, Inc., where he has been involved in over 80 companies.

In addition to his work with Strategic Investments & Holdings, Inc., David has been a board member with other private companies, often as Chair. He also served on the Boards of two public companies, First Niagara Bank and Casual Male.

David has a strong commitment to community, and has been involved as a volunteer, board member, or chair for many local organizations. He is a past Chair of the Roswell Park Alliance Foundation and the Roswell Park Governance Board of Directors. Additionally, David has been a past Chair of Goodwill Industries, Vice Chair of Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, and board member of the Great Lakes Hospital Board. David has also been a board member of the Community Foundation of Greater Buffalo, and the Foundation of the State University College of New York at Plattsburgh, where he proudly works with the advancement of the EOP program and the Zebro Community Service Scholarship.

David and Susan have received numerous community awards over the years, and always encouraged their children’s commitment to the local Buffalo community. His son Ryan is involved with Hospice, and daughter Erin is involved with Roswell Park. David’s other daughter, Lauren, lives in New York City and is involved with the Parkinson’s Foundation – a disease that is connected with his wife Susan’s death in 2018.

David lives in East Amherst and enjoys spending time with his children and three grandsons. He is excited for the birth of another grandchild this August.

About the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, Inc.

The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus (BNMC): re-imagining our city’s future through the dynamic intersection of technology, health, discovery, and collaboration. The BNMC is a social enterprise focused on driving innovation in partnership with our community. The BNMC plays a significant role in driving positive change that builds a vibrant, innovative environment. We do this by improving infrastructure, managing our transportation system, creating a culture of health and wellbeing, driving innovation, and working with our partners to continue to build an innovative district that reflects the best of our community. In addition, the BNMC owns and operates more than 150,000 sq ft of incubator space, helping to grow emerging and mature companies through dynamic workspace, programming, and networking. www.bnmc-old.local

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For more information: Kari Bonaro at BNMC, 202-904-7034

BNMC Joins Steering Committee with Global Innovation District Leaders, Highlighted in Research Brief

BNMC Joins Steering Committee with Global Innovation District Leaders, Highlighted in Research Brief

For more than 15 years, we have been working together with our partners to create a collaborative and inclusive innovation district. In 2014, a paper by the Brookings Institution on the rise of innovation districts supported our efforts in this area and gave a name to the anchors and innovators plus model that we had been creating.

The BNMC is proud to be a part of the steering committee for the Global Institute on Innovation Districts (GIID), global leaders working together to network innovation districts, and to be featured in a new research brief released today by GIID, “The Evolution of Innovation Districts: The New Geography of Global Innovation,” written by Julie Wagner, Bruce Katz, and Thomas Osha.

More than 100 innovation districts exist around the world today with 200 more poised to come online soon, as stated in the report. The authors note: “Roughly twenty districts have reached a high level of sophistication, concentrating in close proximity a mix of research institutions, mature companies, start-ups and scale-ups, co-working spaces, and supportive intermediaries.” We are proud to be one of these 20 districts leading this new form of economic development as we seek to create a national model to rebuild communities using social design through our MutualCity methodology.

According to the authors, “Districts, by their nature, are living labs where creativity and experimentation intersect with the precision of science. Districts are places that fan the flames of organic, evolutionary growth but also drive intentional, deliberate change.”

This perfectly describes what we have been doing here in Buffalo through MutualCity. MutualCity is a practical manual for urban change—from crafting a vision to managing the inevitable conflicts and challenges. We develop this playbook through the principles of mutual understanding, connection, action, collaboration, investment, adaptiveness, and continually asking “what if?”

We operate through a collaborative model that brings diverse stakeholders together under a shared vision to leverage opportunities and challenges faced by our community to create a better future for all. We have successfully implemented this model throughout the past 15 years. And while this process takes time and is not a silver bullet, we believe working together is the only way to enact real change.

We look forward to being a part of the new Global Institute, to both learn from our peers around the world and to continue to play a leadership role in building this vital and inspiring economic driver for our region.

Diversity and Inclusion Drives Innovation

BNMC’s Community Program Manager, Kyria Stephens, recently attended the National Diversity and Leadership conference in Dallas, TX. Check out his thoughts on the meaning of diversity and inclusion, and how it creates an innovative, collaborative community.

Diversity and Inclusion Drives Innovation

When you hear the words diversity and inclusion, what do you think? How do you define it? My answer sounded like, “creating environments and pathways for women and minority groups to thrive in the workplace?” But after attending National Diversity and Leadership conference in Dallas, Texas, I realize that answer is only the tip of the iceberg.

Yes, diversity and inclusion are about creating an emotionally safe work environment in which a person doesn’t have to check their ethnicity at the door to fit in with the dominate culture. Yes, D&I is about making sure that the workplace reflects what the world really looks like at every level. Yes, it is about equal pay for people who do the same job. Yes! Its about doing the right thing for all people… But as I sat and reflected on amazing workshops and poured over the notes I took from keynote speakers, Colin Powell, America Ferrera and President Barak Obama, I realized that diversity and inclusion at its core is about filling blind spots and gap with people with unique vantagepoints.

One of the phrases that echoed throughout the conference is that diversity is a fact, but inclusion is a choice. This world doesn’t have a problem with diversity! Just look around and you will see diversity because it hwp-contentens naturally when all people have access to a space. The problem we have is inclusion. The reason we have inclusion problems is most often because people naturally gravitate to people who look like, think and view the world the same as themselves. But, when that hwp-contentens our perspective becomes narrowed. A person’s ethnicity, culture, gender, education, past experiences and personality creates a unique lens that produces a different perspective. Diverse perspectives allow for a greater vision, a greater vision and creativity go hand in hand and where there is creativity there is innovation.

So, without D&I we are limiting growth, slowing advancement and hindering innovation!

BNMC 2018 Impact Report

BNMC 2018 Impact Report

The BNMC has released its 2018 Impact Report, which highlights our team’s efforts toward these three goals:

  • Drive innovation, economic development, and job growth.
  • Cultivate a safe, accessible, active, and inclusive district that fosters wellbeing and is supported by smart, sustainable infrastructure – a place where people want to work, live, visit, and invest.
  • Connect local youth, residents, businesses, and neighborhoods to economic opportunities.

We continue to work toward becoming the place where tech and social entrepreneurs, mature and growing companies, students, investors, and neighbors innovate, invent, collaborate, and launch the next big idea.

Those of you who we have partnered with over the years know that we operate through a collaborative model that brings diverse stakeholders together under a shared vision to leverage opportunities and solve challenges faced by our community to create a better future for all. We have successfully implemented this model throughout the past 15 years. And while this process takes time and is not a silver bullet, we believe working together is the only way to enact real change.

By dreaming big, our collaborative efforts will continue to lift our community and our collective renaissance.

Join us – we are just getting started. To keep up-to-date on our team, join our email list.

Download the BNMC 2018 Impact Report.

Grand Opening of New Indoor Bike Parking and Bike to Work Celebration this Friday on Medical Campus

BNMC Inc. and partners highlight improvements that support biking and commuting options across the Medical Campus, promoting health, environmental responsibility, and pedestrian-friendly streets.

BUFFALO, NY – The BNMC Inc. will officially open its new secure indoor bike parking at a breakfast gathering on Friday, May 17th at the culmination of National Bike to Work Week as they celebrate those who commute to work by bike and help to build a bike-friendly culture on the Medical Campus.

The BNMC Inc. has more than doubled the indoor bike parking available to employees who work on the Medical Campus with the opening of the new bike parking with lockers in the parking garage at 854 Ellicott, adjacent to Oishei Children’s Hospital, Buffalo General Medical Center, and the Gates Vascular Institute. In addition to lockers for the cyclists use, there is a bike vending machine stocked with bike-related amenities, such as tubes, patch kits, and lights, to aid commuters.

This adds to the secure bike parking in the renovated shipping container and bike fix-it station at the corner of Ellicott & Virginia Street that the BNMC Inc. installed in 2013. GObike Buffalo will manage the indoor parking as part of its longtime partnership with the BNMC.

The Medical Campus already has the densest bicycle parking in the City of Buffalo with 333 spaces (an increase of 100 spaces over last year) and secure bike parking, two Reddy Bikeshare stations with a total of 12 racks with bikes available for short term use, and free parking zone anywhere on the Medical Campus to allow users to park closer to their destination on any public rack or infrastructure without a fee.

WHEN:                                 Friday, May 17th  7:00 AM – 10 AM

Brief remarks begin at 9:00 AM from:

  • Mayor Byron Brown (invited)
  • Matt Enstice, President & CEO, BNMC
  • Allegra Jaros, President, John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital
  • Justin Booth, Executive Director, GObike Buffalo
  • Jennifer White, Communications Director, Reddy Bikeshare

LOCATION:         854 Ellicott Street (corner of Ellicott & Goodrich) on the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus

WHO:                   BNMC Inc. is hosting the event in partnership with GObike Buffalo and Reddy Bikeshare to celebrate bike commuters and those using active commuting options to get to work.

                                There will be a bike train beginning at City Hall for anyone looking to ride as a group to the event on the Medical Campus.

Collaborating partners in transportation planning will be on hand to share information about transportation options, programs and amenities on the Medical Campus that encourage employees to try biking, walking, transit, and carpooling.  Partners include GObike Buffalo, GO Buffalo Niagara, Reddy Bikeshare, NFTA, and others.

Free breakfast and coffee provided by Ashker’s and lloyd taco truck.  

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BNMC Highlighted as Smart Management Model

BNMC Highlighted as Smart Management Model

The BNMC was featured in national pub Governing this week in a piece entitled “The Teamwork that Drives a Great Civic Project.” Our founders, former Mayor Tony Masiello, Tom Beecher, Matt Enstice and Rick Reinhard, shared the importance of making smart tactical choices, strategic planning, and putting the right pieces together to achieve collaborative success. Read the piece here.

Sparking a Culture of Health on the BNMC

Sparking a Culture of Health on the BNMC

BNMC’s healthy communities team has been busy catalyzing wellness initiatives across Campus and our surrounding neighborhoods! From Spark micro-grants to workplace wellbeing and federal grants, we’re proud to be at the forefront of building a healthier city.

Our wp-contentroach includes:

Piloting new technologies:

We installed Byte in the lobby of the Innovation Center earlier in 2018 in partnership with Farmers & Artisans. They keep it stocked with fresh, wholesome, local food options available 24/7. We were able to purchse this through our Creating Healthy Schools and Communities grant from the NYS Department of Health.  We have purchased two other machines, are rebranding them as FRESHTAKES, and will be installing them at the Jacobs Institute in the Gates Vascular Institute and the UBMD offices at Conventus.

Growing fresh produce when possible:

Through this same grant, we were able to get several Grow Towers to allow local organizations to grow their own fresh produce. Our Grow Tower in the Innovation Center has produced a variety of greens – gourmet lettuces, dinosaur kale, bok choy, and herbs like basil and parsley. We had a building get-together and made soup for everyone, and on harvest days have salad parties. We provided a tower to Hospice Buffalo, where they have been growing fresh produce to use in their cafeteria and patient menus. We also provided a Grow Tower to Erie Community College Downtown Campus for their culinary program, which supports healthier ingredients on their menu for staff, students, and the general public.

Providing Spark funding:

Through the BNMC Spark microgrant program, we provided funding for 17 different local projects, several of which involved increasing access to fresh food for our local neighborhoods. The Moot Center, a longtime partner of the BNMC, was able to build a pergola to finish off its raised garden beds that our team helped them build in 2017, allowing seniors to garden in the shade, and  providing covered space for their weekly farmer’s market and events. We also supported Fresh Fix, a local CSA that has a buy one, give one wp-contentroach.

Promoting healthy eating options on and around Campus:

We debuted our Food Map this year and quickly ran out! This guide showcases places within a few minute walk from institutions on the BNMC and encourages employees to get out and get moving on their breaks. We are currently updating and reprinting, so please let us know if you see something missing.

Seeking grant funding to support projects:

We recently launched a three-year, $351K project with support from the United States Department of Agriculture’s Local Food Promotion Program to create a model for health care institutions to integrate technology and cultivate a culture of healthy food practices to increase local food procurement. We will be moving into the public phase of this effort in 2019, so stay tuned for more! This implementation grant was a follow-on to a $25,000 planning grant we received two years ago through the same program to increase healthy food in health care.

Collaborating to eliminate disparities in food access:

Under the lead of the Mobile Safety-Net Team, we are part of a collaborative coalition of local organizations, store owners, and community members to address urban food deserts. The Healthy Corner Store Initiative aims to bring fresh fruits and vegetables, taste tests, and nutrition education, to convenience stores throughout the city to engage residents in a healthy lifestyle.

This is just a brief snapshot at some of the work the BNMC team is doing to create a culture of health and wellbeing in our community. Learn more at bnmc-old.local/health.

The Future Is Now: Celebrating Our Wins & Looking Forward

The Future Is Now: Celebrating Our Wins & Looking Forward

We are honored to have spent another year focused on growing our community into a vibrant, innovative environment. Together with our partners, we’re working to improve infrastructure, manage a transportation system, build a culture of health, and drive innovation, job growth and economic development to create a better, more inclusive Buffalo for all. Take a look at some of the things we are most proud of last year that we will continue to focus on in 2019:

Strengthened community partnerships, especially through our BNMC Spark micro-grant program

We are excited to kick off our 2nd year of BNMC Spark by inviting local community members and organizations to wp-contently for grant funding for projects that help strengthen the community in neighborhoods adjacent to the Medical Campus. Through BNMC Spark, a micro-grant pilot program, the BNMC will award a total of $40,000 in 2019 with maximum grants to individual organizations for $3,500 for project grants. The BNMC awarded $37,000 to 17 organizations in 2018 through BNMC Spark.

Joined National Commission to Slash Transportation Energy Use by Half

Matt Enstice, BNMC’s President and CEO was invited to be a part of the national commission launched by the Alliance to Save Energy to develop recommendations to reduce energy use in the U.S. transportation sector by 50 percent by 2050 while meeting future mobility needs. Matt is one of only two representatives from New York State selected for the commission, along with Gil Quiniones, President and CEO of the New York Power Authority and the only representative from Western New York. This year the BNMC joined the Commission in releasing recommendations to cut transportation energy use in half. Read Matt’s column in the Buffalo News to learn why this is important for the BNMC and for our region. 

Awarded the USDA Farm-to-Hospital Grant to Create a Healthier Campus

We just began a $351,000, three-year initiative to create a model for health care institutions to integrate technology and cultivate a culture of healthy food practices to increase local food procurement. The BNMC is one of 44 organizations around the country, and one of only 4 organizations to receive funding in New York State, through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Local Food Promotion Program (LFPP) during this grant cycle.

Welcomed More than 20 New Companies and Helped Others Grow in the Innovation Center This Year

We continued to build our community by adding new companies to the Innovation Center and expanding our programming and amenities. New additions include Trove, Rel8ed, and Lender Logix, and we built out new space to accommodate rapid growth of ACV Auctions. There are 75 companies in the Innovation Center today.

Continued to Build Buffalo’s Innovation District

From doubling the number of electric vehicle charging stations across the BNMC, continuing to pursue the development of a campus-wide micro grid and opening a new parking garage to ensure easy access for our growing employee, patient and visitor population, to adding new companies and engaging mature companies, to building a diverse and inclusive community, to making sure people who work on live near have access to healthier foods and active living opportunities, our team has worked hard to create the environment to encourage the dynamic intersection of technology, health, invention and collaboration.

If you have ideas or would like to get involved, please reach out to us. Cheers to a healthy and successful 2019!

More People Taking Public Transit and Walking to Work on the BNMC Than Ever Before

More People Taking Public Transit and Walking to Work on the BNMC Than Ever Before

Percentage of Employees Driving Alone to Medical Campus Drops, NFTA Bus & Rail Numbers Increase as BNMC Expands Efforts to Provide Alternative Transportation Options

More than 15,000 people work and study across the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus each day. As this number has nearly doubled over the past decade, the BNMC team actively works to create a safe, accessible destination while building a sustainable transportation system for employees, neighbors, and the community.

BNMC’s most recent employee survey shows that the percentage of employees driving alone has dropped to 80%, down significantly from 88% in 2012 and 84% in 2016. The percentage of employees taking public transportation has increased to 11%, up from 4% in 2012 and 7% in 2016. The percentage of employees walking to work is at 4%, a substantial increase from 1% in both 2012 and 2016.

Every several years, the BNMC team works with our transportation partners within the BNMC institutions to survey employees on how they get to work.

“We are definitely pleased with the direction our numbers are heading. We work very closely with our regional transportation partners to create convenient, safe, and affordable options for employees, patients, and visitors to get to the BNMC,” said Bill Smith, BNMC’s director of access and transportation. “Most recently, we partnered with NFTA to establish and pilot the first Corporate Pass Program, which allowed employers to provide a less expensive option for employees interested in riding the light rail to work.”

Recent workforce data on the BNMC showed an increase of employees who live within the City of Buffalo and in particular within the zip codes touching the BNMC. Our team also works closely with leaders from the BNMC institutions’ human resources and hiring teams, to ensure that we are continuing to increase access to job opportunities on the BNMC. In 2017, one-third of the new hires in our larger institutions were from the surrounding neighborhoods, and nearly 40% live in the city.

BNMC & UB Celebrate Computer Science & Engineering Month at AI & Machine Learning Summit

BNMC & UB Celebrate Computer Science & Engineering Month at AI & Machine Learning Summit

October is Computer Science & Engineering Month, and the BNMC celebrated on Friday, October 5th by hosting an AI & Machine Learning Summit with the University at Buffalo! More than 200 students, faculty, and industry professionals attended the event, which was held at UB Jacobs School of Medicine & Biomedical Sciences on the Medical Campus. BNMC’s CEO, Matt Enstice, welcomed the crowd and addressed the future of health care and medicine with the disruption of technology, followed by a keynote from Dr. Sargur Srihari, SUNY Distinguished Professor in the UB Dept. of Computer Science & Engineering.

The evening then led into a technical roundtable, comprised of Dr. David Doermann, SUNY Empire Innovation Professor & Program Manager for DARPA, Robert Ruocco, CIO for BlueCross BlueShield of WNY, and George Small, CTO at Moog, Inc. BNMC’s CIO, Sam Marrazzo, moderated the discussion, which focused on how AI and machine learning is currently affecting their organizations and visions for the future, as well as how they’re preparing for the next wave of technology. BNMC is proud to have hosted this event with our partners, and we look forward to continue building and supporting a culture of technology in Buffalo.

 

Worksite Wellness: Beth Machnica takes on role of Buffalo’s healthy company advocate

Worksite Wellness: Beth Machnica takes on role of Buffalo’s healthy company advocate

By  – Copy Editor, Buffalo Business First

Worksite wellness is a hot topic and here’s why: For every $1 a company spends on a comprehensive wellness program, $8 can be saved in health care costs by lowering medication usage, surgeries or preventing illness and disease over five years.

That’s a solid return on investment, said Beth Machnica, healthy communities catalyst for Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus Inc.

She’s leading the charge to see the region gain “company health champions” of all sizes and in every industry. And she’s doing it through the Buffalo Healthy Workplace Initiative, led by BNMC and funded by a five-year grant from the state Department of Health.

It’s linked to a public health effort titled “Creating Healthy Schools and Communities,” whose goal is to reduce major risk factors of obesity, diabetes and other chronic diseases.

“The Buffalo Healthy Workplace Initiative is a platform for collectively transforming workplaces into environments of health promotion, one step at a time,” Machnica said.

She is tasked with bringing together diverse employers to learn from each other, develop best practices and improve their focus on creating a healthier workplace.

Indeed, a company’s overall environment and culture influence the health of people who work there, she said, from such things as air quality to the type of lighting, infrastructure that supports physical activity and access to healthy food in vending machines and cafeterias. It’s also important to address social, emotional and mental health components.

“Through this initiative, BNMC makes recommendations for how workplaces can improve after an initial benchmarking exercise on these components,” she said.

Hwp-contenty and healthy employees are more productive, and offering a strong wellness program “is a huge competitive advantage that many are beginning to realize,” she said.

Have local businesses stepped up to the plate on this? Although Buffalo is home to the chicken wing, there is great momentum among local employers and insurers in being places of health. Some worksites have been at it for quite some time. They have state-of-the-art gyms, showers, walking treadmills, free healthy lunch and snacks, personal training, chair massage, stress management and financial wellness classes. Other local companies are just getting their feet wet in the space.

How can you help? BNMC has varying levels of resources, technical assistance, infrastructure and equipment to provide organizations at any level of wellness to expand and/or improve their current programs.

Can companies learn from each other and share ideas? We help companies learn from each other and share ideas through our work council model. Each month we bring together representatives from each of the organizations involved. Most times we meet at the Innovation Center on the medical campus and focus on a certain topic, such as Social Determinants of Health, Cross Generational Differences, or Active Transportation in relation to a wellness program. Sometimes we meet at other worksites to get a tour of their facilities and get a presentation of their wellness program. The majority of participants have reported in our annual survey the biggest benefit from attending these meetings other than the content is the opportunity to network.

What drives you to make difference? I am passionate about the work I do. I feel strongly about preventive health; I want to prevent chronic disease in the population as a whole more so than I want to work with individuals. Our health care system is so focused on treating sick people. I think we need to focus more on prevention altogether. And in order to do that, changes in our environment and changes at the systems level are needed, which can make a larger impact than treating people individually and putting Band Aids on things. For me, the workplace wellness space is a perfect fit to address preventive health in the population at the systems level.

What’s the bottom line? Organizations must be strategic in offering a strong wellness program that is relevant to the unique needs of their population and invest in their employees’ health. It takes time to change a habit, behavior, lifestyle and overall a workplace culture. The return, monetary or otherwise, will come with time.

What makes the timing right for this initiative? Health and wellness is trendy right now in general. With healthy food spots opening up and free yoga everywhere, Buffalo is becoming a landscape for health and well-being. Employers are catching on to this and expanding the variety of diversity of wellness offerings as a result.

BNMC Receives USDA Grant to Enhance Local Food Procurement Efforts in Health Care

BNMC Receives USDA Grant to Enhance Local Food Procurement Efforts in Health Care

Three-Year, $351K Grant Prioritizes Local Agriculture from New York State

Buffalo, NY – October 1, 2018 – The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, Inc. (BNMC) has received a $260,325 grant to create a model for health care institutions to integrate technology and cultivate a culture of healthy food practices to increase local food procurement. The grant includes a local match of $91,063 bringing the project total to $351,388. The BNMC is one of 44 organizations around the country, and one of only 4 organizations to receive funding in New York State,  through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Local Food Promotion Program (LFPP) during this grant cycle.

“Increasing access to local foods, especially in a place with such robust agriculture and other locally-sourced food, is good for the health of our people and good for the health of our economy,” said Jonathan McNeice, project director for the grant and director of healthy communities efforts for the BNMC.  “Supporting local food procurement is part of our overall effort to continue to create a culture of health and wellbeing both on the BNMC and throughout our region.”

This grant builds upon the more than $2M in public and private funding that the BNMC and its community partners have secured over the past fifteen years to support healthy eating, healthy worksites, and active living policies and programs in Western New York.

BNMC’s Farm-to-Hospital Initiative began in 2015 with a $25,000 grant from the USDA Local Food Promotion Program to assess feasibility for sourcing local food on the Medical Campus. The process included identifying champions inside each organization, providing learning opportunities, gathering data, engaging suppliers, partnering with experts in the field, and creating a foundational plan for future implementation. This project will now shift to an implementation phase and seek to work with food service providers, hospital staff, and farmers dedicated to this initiative and partner closely with Health Care Without Harm to implement a local model on the BNMC. Health Care without Harm is an international group dedicated to transforming health care worldwide to reduce its environmental footprint and become a leader in sustainability, environmental health, and justice.

“BNMC Fresh: Farm to Hospital Implementation” will create a model that prioritizes local agriculture from New York State, enabling farms to access new markets (hospitals), and can be replicated across the state. The initiative aims to establish enhanced food chain transparency from farmers to distributors to institutions; as well as implement customized crop plans in both hospitals that merge New York State’s top crops with institutional demand.

This collaborative work is expected to create a culture that embraces local farms through prioritizing local procurement; establishes and expands community supported agriculture (CSA) and farmers’ market programs; establishes food chain transparency; increases awareness and knowledge among consumers of local food procurement efforts; and provides knowledge and skill-building opportunities to agribusiness stakeholders (farmers, distributor, food service teams). This project ultimately aims to make local procurement a regular practice and culture among health care institutions.

“Roswell Park has been thrilled to partner with the BNMC on both the planning grant and the upcoming implementation grant,” said Christina Dibble, director of nutrition and food services at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center. “Given the unique needs of cancer patients, we’ve made it a priority to provide seasonal, local foods for our patients, visitors, and employees when available, and we look forward to expanding our local offerings through channels that this grant opens up for us.”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is investing $102.7 million to increase opportunities for farmers, ranchers, and other growers across the country through five grant programs. The funding supports a variety of locally-led projects intended to expand markets for local food promotion and specialty crops. Of that total, $13.45 million is directed to 44 projects, including the BNMC’s, to support the development and expansion of local and regional food businesses to increase domestic consumption of, and access to, locally and regionally produced agricultural products, and to develop new market opportunities for farm and ranch operations serving local markets through the Local Food Promotion Program (LFPP).

 About the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus

 The Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus, Inc. (BNMC) is a multi-anchor social enterprise focused on driving innovation in partnership with our community. As the non-profit charged with addressing shared issues among our member institutions, the BNMC plays a significant role in driving positive change that builds a vibrant, innovative environment. We focus on improving infrastructure, managing our transportation system, creating a culture of health and wellbeing, driving innovation, and working with our partners to continue to build an innovative district that reflects the best of our community.