Updates from the Commission on Science and Technology

Lupardo to lead Legislative Commission on Science & Technology
February 16, 2011

Vestal, NY – Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo (D-Endwell) announced today that Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has appointed her to a leadership position in the Assembly. Lupardo will Chair the Legislative Commission on Science and Technology. She also announced that she has been assigned to the Assembly’s Committee on Economic Development, Job Creation, Industry and Commerce.

Joining Lupardo at the press conference held in the Innovative Technologies Complex (ITC) at Binghamton University were: C. Peter Magrath, Interim President of Binghamton University; Bahgat Sammakia, Interim Vice President of Research at Binghamton University; Chuck Schwerin, CEO of Sonostics; and, Diana Bendz, President of the Southern Tier Opportunity Coalition (STOC).

“I am honored to be given the responsibility to Chair the Legislative Commission on Science and Technology,” said Lupardo. “The Commission plays an important role in advancing the research and development conducted at the universities and research institutions across New York. By fostering commercialization, we can create new products, new companies and new jobs. This is central to rebuilding New York’s economy by encouraging innovation and growth.”

“Throughout her career, Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo has been a strong supporter of science and technology projects across New York State,” said Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver. “Her advocacy, particularly in fighting for Binghamton University as a SUNY Center of Excellence, has helped the state wisely invest in tomorrow’s major innovations. As always, I look forward to working with her in her new role as commission chair.”

“I congratulate Assemblywoman Lupardo on her new appointments,” said C. Peter Magrath, Interim President for Binghamton University. “She has been an energetic supporter of Binghamton University and recognizes the vital role that we play and will continue to play in our community and in New York State. We are grateful for her leadership and look forward to working with her to maximize Binghamton University and SUNY’s potential to be one of the most significant revitalization engines of our time.”

“Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo has had a longstanding interest in the research and technological innovations being developed on the Binghamton University campus,” said Bahgat Sammakia, Interim Vice President for Research at Binghamton University. “She has been instrumental in the designation of our Center of Excellence and in obtaining funding for a new building that will bridge the science, technology and commercialization gaps that are needed to implement the electronic technologies of the future. Through Assemblywoman Lupardo’s ongoing support and commitment to Binghamton University, we will have a much closer connection to the discussions being held in Albany that could impact science and technology initiatives not only in our community but in New York State.”

“As a start-up medical device company spun out of the Bioengineering Department at Binghamton University, trying to grow roots during the most challenging of economic times, Sonostics found a sympathetic ear in Assemblywoman Lupardo, paired with a willingness to help,” said Chuck Schwerin, CEO of Sonostics. “It is my expectation that, under her leadership, the Commission will enhance this state's ability to nurture entrepreneurial ventures such as ours that promise to be the linchpin for economic growth in the Southern Tier.”

“A key part of improving our state's competitiveness is an increased focus on science and technology education, and to stimulate interest in science and technology subjects at all educational levels,” said Diana Bendz, President of STOC. “The government can and should play a serious role in the promotion of relevant careers and opportunities. Assemblywoman Lupardo's perspective on this subject will enhance her leadership role and serve to focus state efforts on science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education which in turn will support New York's vitality.”

The Legislative Commission on Science and Technology was created 1979 and is dedicated to providing the Legislature and the public with up-to-date information on the complex technological and scientific issues facing our society today. The Commission carries out its work by conducting in-depth and short-term studies, providing quick answers to specific inquiries, holding hearings, conferences, and roundtable discussions, and developing legislation. Currently, the Commission is working to:

  • stimulate and nurture the State's numerous technology based industries and investigate the impact of science and technology on the economy, work force and education;
  • further scientific and technological literacy in students from pre-K through college and in the community at-large by developing legislation and supporting initiatives that promote science museums, science and math clubs, and other community-based educational ventures; and,
  • advance the development of alternative energy resources and environmental technologies.

Lupardo added that she has already partnered with faculty at Binghamton University and Glenwood Elementary School in Vestal for a program to kick off National Engineer’s Week next week. She is also planning an “Innovation Tour” across New York State later this year, which she approached Governor Cuomo about earlier.