Amherst Leaders Laud Daemen’s Advances at On-Campus Address

By | February 15, 2022

Brian Kulpa

The Amherst State of the Town, held at Daemen for the second year in a row, highlighted the economic resilience of the community, businesses and called special attention to the strength of the town-gown relationship between the college and town leaders.

Re-elected in the fall – and sworn in for a second term after the New Year – Town Supervisor Brian Kulpa explained his vision for the municipality, which is one of the largest in the state by population. 

​​A recording of the event is available on YouTube. 

The presentation included videos and comments from prominent national, state and local officials and executives, including New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli; Roswell Park President and CEO and Daemen Trustee Candace Johnson; U.S. Congressman Brian Higgins; Independent Health President and CEO Michael Kropp; and Hope Knight, president and CEO Designate at Empire State Development.

From left: Mark Gaulin, CEO and president of PCI; Kropp, Kulpa, Olson, Baynes

The hour-long event – presented by the Amherst Chamber of Commerce – included a conversation between Kulpa and Daemen President Gary Olson.

“It’s wonderful to see Daemen flourish here in the Town of Amherst,” said Kulpa and referred to the college as a “major contributing organization to the town and all things economic development.”

He then lauded Daemen for posting the highest gains in enrollment of any institution of higher education in the region: “It’s a testament to Daemen and the leadership that your team has.”

“We beat out all of them – almost six percent [growth],” said Olson. 

Kulpa called attention to the town’s growing biomedical sector – branded as the “Medical Spine,” along the 290 and 90 – that includes many orthopedic and neurologic specialty facilities. 

Included in the corridor is Daemen’s Todd and Leslie Shatkin Institute for Mobility Innovation & Technology (IMIT), which is slated to open later this year. 

Olson remarked to the supervisor, “I was honored to stand with you and Dr. Shatkin in announcing our exciting endeavor in sports medicine.”

“There’s not a center [quite like it] that includes all of the robotic machinery that can help everybody that has spinal injury or other injury that requires rehabilitation with the use of robotics,” said Olson. [At IMIT, it’s] all in one place.”

The Amherst Medical Spine also includes the Roswell Park Scott Bieler Amherst Center for Cancer Care, which broke ground in the fall. 

“We’re going to make a difference in peoples’ lives—together,” said Candace Johnson, of the facility made possible by fellow Daemen Trustee Scott Bieler. 

Kulpa and co-host AJ Baynes, president and CEO of the Amherst Chamber of Commerce, thanked the Daemen-based production crew for its coordination of live and pre-recorded content that streamed online. 

“We’re looking forward to everyone having a productive 2022,” said Kulpa. 

The two-day event last week was staged in the Alumni Lounge by the Office of Career Services.