Let’s Pause and Applaud True Standouts!

HIA, Business Achievement Awards, B) Luncheon (2) (800x800)-COLLAGEAs business executives, we spend almost all of our work time trying to do our jobs well.

So it’s nice to pause for a moment to applaud those Long Island companies and organizations that are true standouts when it comes to performance and leadership.

That’s what we did on September 19 at the Crest Hollow Country Club in Woodbury when HIA-LI held a gala luncheon to honor recipients of our 25th Annual Business Achievement Awards (BAA).

Some 500 guests were greeted by New York State Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul and Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone, each of whom praised the honorees and also applauded HIA-LI on our commitment to fulfilling the vision set forth in our “Opportunity Analysis” issued last April.

Covering four categories, BAA nominees were evaluated based on the quality of their employee relations, regional business engagement, profitability, and vision for their future. Other considerations included recent accomplishments, innovative processes, market growth, industry leadership, and their ability to overcome adversity.

The “Large Business” recipient was SUNation Solar Systems, Long Island’s largest solar company, based in the Long Island Innovation Park at Hauppauge. Other “Large Business” finalists included: American Diagnostic Corporation; Custom Computer Specialists; JLL; and Northwell Health.

The “Small Business” honoree was East/West Industries, an aerospace engineering company in Ronkonkoma. Other “Small Business” entrants were Accu Data Workforce Solutions; Contemporary Computer Services; National Business Capital & Services; and Prestige Employee Administrators.

Selected as “Rookie of the Year” was Pure Mammography in Lake Grove. Category finalists included Naka Technologies, LLC; Senior Health Plan Specialists; and SynchroPET.

The “Not-for-Profit” honoree was Dominican Village, an assisted and independent living community in Amityville. Finalists included ACLD; CN Counseling & Guidance Services; EPIC Long Island; Independent Group Home Living, Inc.; and Splashes of Hope.

HIA-LI also presented a special “Industry Leadership Award” to Northwell Health, the state’s largest healthcare provider and the region’s largest private employer.

The luncheon gave us all a chance to publicly commend these outstanding firms. And, over the years, honorees have told us how they leverage their awards and finalist status to boost their marketing and their overall competitiveness.

So, my message to you? Nominate your organization in 2020! That way we can all applaud you next September!

The Largest Industrial Park in the Northeast Has a New Name – and a Strategy for Long-Term Growth

HIP press conference 4 24 2019 group shot
From left: Jack Kulka, Lifetime Board Member, HIA-LI; Joe Campolo, Board Chair, HIA-LI; Hon. Ed Wehrheim, Smithtown Supervisor; Hon. Steve Bellone, Suffolk County Executive; Hon. Angie Carpenter, Islip Town Supervisor; Terri Alessi-Miceli, President & CEO, HIA-LI; Kelly Morris, Deputy Executive Director, Suffolk IDA; and, James Lima, President, James Lima Planning + Development.

It’s hard enough figuring out how to grow our businesses and organizations over the next, say, six months . . . or year . . . or even two years.

So, how do we chart a course for growth over the next decade? Or two decades?

Well, we now have clear and specific answers.

First, based on feedback from park occupants, our government partners and our future workforce, we are changing the name of the Hauppauge Industrial Park.

Its new name is the Long Island Innovation Park at Hauppauge with the tagline: “Where Business Meets Innovation.”

As the largest business park in the Northeast, we’re already the unrivaled cornerstone of the Suffolk County economy. This Park is home to 55,000 employees – and our $13 billion of annual output accounts for eight percent of Long Island’s Gross Domestic Product.

Our proven capacity for innovation will be the key to decades of new growth, so innovation is now our middle name.

And what is our blueprint for decades of expansion?

Last year, we assembled the talents of Stony Brook University, the Suffolk County Industrial Development Agency, and the Regional Plan Association to compile a comprehensive inventory of the park’s assets.

The Suffolk IDA then brought in James Lima Planning + Development to match up our assets against the anticipated demands of tomorrow’s regional and national economy.

The result: a 167-page report that Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone called a “comprehensive roadmap” that spells out “the building blocks needed to strengthen, expand and attract key industry clusters that will push our innovative economy to the next level.”

The analysis found that we held a big advantage over the rest of Long Island through our powerful contingent of “tradeable” business. “Tradeable” commerce involves goods and services exportable to other locations — and not consumed solely by local markets.

This is a hard-core metric of regional economic development value because it measures an asset’s capacity to serve, in essence, as a “dollar magnet” – and to attract outside wealth into the area.

The Island-wide ratio of “tradeable” business runs only 23 percent, contrasted with a national rate of 36 percent.

But the figure for Long Island Innovation Park at Hauppauge stands at an impressive 58 percent, over 20 percent higher than the national average.

That’s a platform worth building upon, and one that is destined to elevate the Park’s status as a regional business driver.

The report pinpointed five essential, high-level economic development strategies for the Park to grow and influence the entire Long Island economy:

First, facilitate business growth. Second, strengthen training and workforce development. Third, attract and retain knowledge workers. Fourth, promote innovation and technology transfer. And fifth, fortify connections among business, government and institutions.

“This reimagining of the Park,” says Suffolk IDA chair Theresa Ward, “gets everyone involved in economic development in this region excited because the potential is so real and obtainable.”

With this insightful, five-part game plan in hand, Long Island Innovation Park at Hauppauge is today equipped to fulfill a growth scenario that will redouble its contributions to our regional economy.

Ambitious? Yes.

And do we have the assets – and the will – to pull it off?

Absolutely!