By Richard Asinof
PROVIDENCE – The monthly meeting of MedMates, held at MacMillan Hall at Brown University, featured a presentation by the new R.I. Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Marcel Valois.
Valois’ talk focused on how he saw MedMates, a new cluster group formed by companies in the medical device and life sciences sector, fitting into the new Rhode Island economy.
Valois began by acknowledging that new laws enacted by the R.I General Assembly in the last session have “blown up and reinvented us.”
How that all works out is in the future, he continued, but for the present, Valois said he was committed to economic development as a simple concept: “How we work with our public and private and nonprofit companies to create conditions for companies to grow and thrive in all sectors, creating new jobs and a higher standard of living for all Rhode Islanders.”
Valois said that working in partnership with the Greater Providence Chamber of Commerce, the EDC was developing a marketing campaign to rebrand Rhode Island in a positive vision, promsing that the effort will lead to “people being amazed about what happens in our little state.”
Avi Nevel also gave a presentation about the upcoming Rhode Island Health Care & Life Sciences trade mission to Israel, scheduled for Nov. 8-16. The mission will be led by Dr. Michael Fine, the director of the R.I. Department of Health, and will seek to develop R&D collaborations between Israeli and Rhode Island companies. The cost is $3,000 per company with fewer than 250 employees and $5,000 for companies with more than 250 employees, not including travel expenses.