Patent law firm hits mark

FREDERICK, Md. — Since its inception in January 2016, an area law firm has helped clients secure a total of 478 patents.

Four founding partners and 12 employees came together to form the patent law firm McBee Moore Woodward & Vanik IP LLC.

Since its formation, MMWV has focused on using technology to streamline workflows and more efficiently organize the processes and infrastructure associated with a predominately transactional patent practice. The result has been improved customer service and an environment that allows employees to flexibly work remotely.

MMWV has grown to 24 employees. Seven of MMWV’s practitioners hold doctoral degrees in a variety of technical specializations, one practitioner holds an medical degree and three practitioners are former U.S. Patent and Trademark Office examiners.

MMWV has locations in Frederick, Md., and Tysons Corner, Va.

The number of patents granted to clients has risen each of the past three years, MMWV reported, from 128 in 2016 to 157 in 2017 and 193 last year.

Patriot Federal member wins $1,000 in grand-opening contest

Submitted photo
Mark Cunningham, fourth from left, poses with Patriot Federal Credit Union’s Robinwood Branch team members.

Mark Cunningham of Hagerstown was Patriot Federal Credit Union’s $1,000 “Scan & Win” winner, according to an announcement from the financial institution.

The contest was held an conjunction with the grand opening of Patriot’s new branch on Robinwood Drive near Hagerstown.

“I’ve never really won anything like this before, and when I found out I was the $1,000 winner, I couldn’t believe it,” “ Cunningham said in a news release. “Robinwood is a really nice building and great location. I feel fortunate and I want to thank Patriot. I’m going to deposit the $1,000 into my Patriot account in the new branch.”

The one-story facility has more than 3,800 square feet and is Patriot’s second full-service branch in Washington County. The branch offers auto loans; mortgages; savings, checking and certificates; and  wealth management services.

Cammie Shrewsbury, branch manager, oversees a team of six staff members.

Patriot serves Franklin and Fulton counties in Pennsylvania, Washington County in Maryland and the borough of Shippensburg, Pa.

Notes and quotes for February 2019

By Jennifer Fitch
Work continues on the new Jamison Door Co. production facility in the Wharf Road Industrial Park in Franklin County, Pa. The 112-year-old company, based in Hagerstown, Md., makes air doors, insulated doors, and high-speed, roll-up doors, specializing in doors for cold-storage businesses. With the company’s existing space for roll-up doors overflowing in Washington County, Md., Jamison decided to build the new facility. Thirty-five people will work at the new plant. The company also has additional locations in Hagerstown and near Williamsport.

Patent No. 100

FREDERICK, Md. — The United States Patent and Trademark Office has awarded Immatics Biotechnologies GmBH, a leading immunotherapy company, its 100th U.S. patent.

The announcement was made by McBee, Moore, Woodward and Vanik IP LLC (also known as MMWV Law), which has represented Immatics.

In a press release, Immatics indicated that its 100th patent (No. 10,143,731) demonstrates a significant achievement in innovation in the Life Sciences industry. Using the company’s XPRESIDENT technology, Immatics identified a peptide presented on the human leucocyte antigen, a key piece to the development of cancer immunotherapies.

“We are thrilled to have the opportunity to be on Immatics’ IP team for over 10 years,” said Susan McBee, managing partner of McBee, Moore, Woodward & Vanik IP LLC. “This is an exciting time, given all the developments in this technology space. We have developed an approach to sufficiently cover Immatics’ products and methods while still meeting the patentability requirements in the USA in an ever-changing field.”

Md. ranks high in tech economy preparedness

BALTIMORE — Maryland ranks among the top states for technology economy preparedness in a report recently released by the Milken Institute, according to a news release from the Maryland Department of Commerce.

The 2018 State Technology and Science Index, which is conducted every other year, ranked Maryland third in the nation for its ability to foster and sustain a technology sector, which is considered a major indicator in determining a state’s economic health. Overall, Maryland ranked in the top 10 in four out of five of the report’s key indexes, coming in first in the technology and science workforce category, and second in human capital investment and research and development inputs.

College degrees

Percentage of residents in 2017 who have at least a bachelor’s degree in the Crossroads Business Journal area:

• Frederick County, Md.: 40.5 percent

• Maryland average: 39.7 percent

• United States average: 32.0 percent

• Pennsylvania average: 31.4 percent

• Jefferson County, W.Va.: 30.5 percent

• Washington County, Md.: 21.5 percent

• Berkeley County, W.Va.: 20.7 percent

• Franklin County, Pa.: 20.6 percent

• West Virginia average: 20.2 percent

• Allegany County, Md.: 18.2 percent

• Morgan County, W.Va.: 18.0 percent

• Fulton County, Pa.: 13.5 percent

— StatsAmerica

Bowen closes two real estate deals in Washington County

Taylor Bowen

HAGERSTOWN, Md. — Two separate real estate deals totaling more than $4 million have closed recently in Hagerstown, Md.

The sales were announced by Taylor Bowen, broker and owner of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Bowen Realty.

An industrial building at 560 Western Maryland Parkway was sold for $3.1 million in a deal completed on Dec. 7, Bowen reported in a news release.

The 36,000-square-foot industrial building has rail access and sits on more than 11 acres

The new owner, Beaver Creek Farming LLC, has a North Bethesda mailing address.

The firm will complete some renovations before taking occupancy, according to the news release.

Bowen Realty’s Commercial Division represented the seller, Cosmo Films Inc.

And a $1,075,000 deal to sell property at 1115 Professional Court closed on Dec. 14, Bowen announced.

The property, which formerly housed First Look Photo, was sold to 1115 Professional Court LLC, an entity based in Walkersville. The new owner plans to renovate the 7,800-square-foot building, which includes subdividing the structure to house multiple businesses, according to the news release. The building sits on a one-acre lot.

The purchase comes as plans are progressing to extend Professional Court, according to the news release. The extension will create access to a proposed technology business site along with access to Meritus Medical Center and Robinwood Drive.

Berkshire Hathaway Bowen Realty is a full-service real estate firm servicing the Tri-State area. Its commercial division specializes in all types of commercial real estate sales, investment properties and commercial leasing, including retail, office, medical, industrial, multifamily, single lots and development land.

Health system receives top ratings

CUMBERLAND, Md. — Western Maryland Health System is five-star rated for coronary bypass surgery, valve surgery, hip-fracture treatment and pneumonia treatment, according to a new study.

The report was recently released by Healthgrades, an online resource for information about physicians and hospitals.

WMHS was also recognized for the fifth consecutive year with the Cardiac Surgery Excellence Award for the years 2015-19, which honors the health system for being in the top 10 percent for cardiac surgery among hospitals in the nation.

These achievements are part of findings and data featured in the Healthgrades 2019 Report to the Nation. The new report demonstrates how clinical performance continues to differ dramatically between hospitals regionally and nationally.

A five-star rating indicates that WMHS’ clinical outcomes are statistically significantly better than expected when treating the condition or performing the procedure being evaluated.

For its analysis, Healthgrades evaluated approximately 45 million Medicare inpatient records for almost 4,500 short-term acute care hospitals nationwide to assess hospital performance in 32 common conditions and procedures, and evaluated outcomes in appendectomy and bariatric surgery using all-payer data provided by 15 states and the District of Columbia.

Western Maryland Health System was formed in 1996 to strengthen the health care services in Western Maryland and the surrounding communities in Pennsylvania and West Virginia. In November 2009, WMHS opened a new hospital in Cumberland.

Menno Haven cuts ribbon for rehab center

Submitted photo
Menno Haven held a public ribbon-cutting ceremony for its new rehabilitation center in Chambersburg, Pa. More than 200 community members attended.

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. — Menno Haven recently announced the near completion of the new Menno Haven Rehabilitation Center at 2055 Scotland Ave. in Chambersburg.

A public ribbon cutting took place Dec. 16 with an open house and tours. More than 200 community members attended.

Construction of the approximately $21 million project began in September 2017.

“I am excited that the building will be completed on time and on budget,” Menno Haven CEO Hugh Davis said in a news release.

The public ceremony featured opening remarks by Davis and guest speakers. It also served as the launch of a capital campaign.

The ribbon was symbolically cut by founding board members Charlie Diller and Charles Hunsecker.

Menno Haven expected to begin operating the building with patients in January after final regulatory inspections.

Davis described the rehabilitation center as “unlike any in the region.”

“This building will allow us to better serve individuals who need short-term care. Whether that be someone recovering from a surgery, an illness or an accident, they will recover here and then return home,” he said.

Deanna Beins has been named the administrator of the new center.

“Our team is really eager to start serving guests in this wonderful building,” Beins said in the release. “We put a lot of thought into the design to provide the best recovery environment possible.”

Some details:

• The center has 44 private rooms that Menno Haven calls “suites,” each with a private bathroom.

• The state-of-the-art therapy gym has the newest technology to aid in recovery. The gym overlooks a courtyard that serves as an outdoor gathering space and an extension of the therapy gym. Walking paths of varying materials, textures and inclines provide guests with passive therapy opportunities.

• The building includes amenities such as a salon and spa and café.

• There will be an on-site Summit Health Clinic that serves Menno Haven residents and the public.

• The building will employ about 80 team members.

The building is built to WELL Building standards, a standard for buildings, interior spaces and communities seeking to implement, validate and measure features that support and advance human health and wellness.

“From the moment you enter the front door, you will see this place is different. WELL design incorporates research-based elements intended to promote the physical, emotional and spiritual health of guests,” Davis said.

A few examples of elements included in the building to achieve this standard are UV lamps in the HVAC cooling coils to ensure the best air quality, whole-building water filters, abundant natural light and a light system designed to match circadian rhythms.

“To our knowledge, this is one of the first senior-living projects built to WELL standards in the nation,” Davis said.

The Rehabilitation Center is part of Menno Haven’s five-year strategic plan known as Project GENESIS, which will include replacing the original 1964 nursing home, a resident life center, memory care houses, and new independent-living cottages.             

Washington County man is Md.’s first youth apprenticeship ambassador

Casey Kelly

Maryland Labor Secretary Kelly M. Schulz recently announced the launch of the Maryland Youth Apprenticeship Ambassador Program.

The program raises awareness of and encourages participation in the Apprenticeship Maryland Program, Maryland’s youth apprenticeship effort.

Casey Kelly, a former youth apprentice and current junior analyst for Washington County-based Beacon Grace, was named the state’s first youth apprenticeship ambassador.

The announcement was made at Frederick County Public Schools’ second annual Youth Apprenticeship Summit, an informational event that introduced FCPS students to apprenticeship employers and provided opportunities for career development.

Kelly joined the youth apprenticeship program through Washington County Public Schools in January 2018. While finishing his senior year at Washington County Technical High School, Kelly was hired by Beacon Grace as a junior analyst apprentice.

Hagerstown Community College, Wilson sign agreement on transfers

Submitted photo
Hagerstown Community College President Jim Klauber and Wilson College President Barbara K. Mistick post at the signing ceremony for a new agreement between the two institutions.

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. — Wilson College and Hagerstown Community College have reached an agreement guaranteeing qualified HCC students admission to Wilson bachelor’s degree programs and allowing them to transfer all credits earned with a grade of C or higher.

The dual admission and articulation agreement, officially signed by college officials at a ceremony on Wilson’s campus, offers HCC associate-degree graduates additional advantages, including receiving full junior status at Wilson if they transfer 60 credits, as well as having Wilson’s admission fee waived. Qualified HCC students will also receive coordinated academic advising by both colleges to ensure that they take courses that can be applied to their bachelor’s degree.

The goal is to encourage more HCC graduates to pursue bachelor’s degrees by making the transition as smooth and economical as possible.

To qualify for a Wilson bachelor’s degree pathway under the dual admission agreement, HCC students must graduate with an associate degree with a minimum, cumulative grade-point average of 2.0, and they must have submitted an intent form upon completing 30 credits at HCC. Students may transfer to Wilson a maximum of 72 credits earned at HCC.

Frederick County government solar power project breaks ground

FREDERICK, Md. — Ground was recently broken for Frederick County government’s first solar project.

The project will involve the construction of a nearly 2-million-kilowatt-hour photovoltaic solar array on 4.9 acres of vacant land to provide low-cost renewable energy to the Ballenger-McKinney wastewater treatment plant.

The project is a step toward meeting the county’s goal of
4 million kilowatt hours generated from renewable energy sources, a goal the county set as part of the Maryland Energy Administration’s Smart Energy Communities program. Frederick County government’s goal is to have 20 percent of its electricity consumed come from renewable energy sources by the year 2022.

The solar project is made possible through a $2.4 million grant from the Maryland Department of the Environment from the Energy Water Infrastructure Program. The county is using engineering and project-management resources via the Northeast Maryland Waste Disposal Authority for the design, construction and long-term operation of the facility.

Allstate agents earn grant for American Red Cross

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Seventy-six Allstate exclusive agents, exclusive financial specialists and licensed sales professionals from the greater Washington, D.C., area, including several from the Crossroads Business Journal area, recently came together to volunteer and secure a $45,000 Allstate Foundation Helping Hands Grant to benefit the American Red Cross National Capital Chapter.

The grant will support the American Red Cross’ mission to quickly respond to a disaster by providing relief to emergency responders, as well as financial assistance to those affected by a disaster.

The disaster preparedness kit distribution was part of a multi-state Allstate Foundation volunteer effort benefitting the American Red Cross in Connecticut, Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Washington, D.C. In all, more than 8,580 Allstate Foundation starter disaster preparedness kits were distributed and $131,000 was donated to the American Red Cross through Allstate Foundation Helping Hands® grants.

Participating Allstate agency owners and licensed sales Professionals from the region include:

Virginia

• Jason Sengpiehl, Purcellville

• Jennifer Smith, Front Royal

• Jennifer Smith, Winchester

Maryland

• Nicholas Cathell, Cumberland

• Jerome Holz, Frederick

• Michelle Turner, Frederick

• Jason Williams, Frederick