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Not All Heroes Wear Capes: A Shoutout to Some of Our Inspirational Clients

May 1, 2020

All of us at Shulman Rogers have been tremendously inspired by stories of our clients’ resilience and unyielding support of those in need during this crisis.

To all of our clients on the front lines of this battle – doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists, EMTs, firefighters, law enforcement personnel and essential workers– we salute you. We are grateful for, and in awe of, your fearless and tireless work to support us in our time of need.

And, to all of our business clients —  as we work with you to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on your businesses, silver linings to our days come in the form of stories about how so many of you have found creative and altruistic ways to “pivot.” We share some of these stories below.

 

Awesome Ninja Labs

Leveraging their networks and experience in medical device production, Awesome Ninja Labs aims to generate 75,000 – 100,000 face shields (made to FDA quality standards for medical devices and suitable for use within hospital and other healthcare environments) in the coming weeks to support front-line healthcare workers. To achieve this ambitious goal and simultaneously respond to the economic impact COVID-19 has had on our community, Awesome Ninja is hiring furloughed or laid-off workers for temporary employment.

Check out Maryland Governor Larry Hogan as he announces support for Awesome Ninja Labs PPE manufacturing initiatives in this press conference.

 

BETAH Associates, Inc.

Wilhelmina Bell-Taylor founded BETAH Associates to “Do Well and Do Good.” Her daughter and now CEO, Michelle Taylor, has carried that belief forward by ensuring that philanthropy is an integral part of The BETAH Way. Encouraged by words that her mother penned in a journal for over 10 years, Michelle created a short video to offer hope to others during this difficult time. As a minority and woman-owned business, BETAH is committed to supporting communities of color, as they have been most impacted by the pandemic. During the COVID-19 crisis, BETAH contributed to NIH Children’s Inn, Feeding America, and Maryland SPCA and continue to identify organizations that are serving hard-hit communities in the area. 

In addition- BETAH staff member, Patricia Sias is working with with her family to provide those directly affected by COVID-19 with nutritionally balanced groceries (with a little sweet treat), and now serves 24 families. 

 

Bialek Environments

Throughout this unprecedented pandemic, Bialek Environments has continued to work tirelessly to support our clients on the front lines.  For one of our clients, the Veterans Affairs, we have been active in guiding them through the quick conversion of existing spaces into COVID-19 patient rooms. Intellistruct, Bialek’s prefabricated construction division, partnered with our manufacturers to develop design concepts for ‘rapidly deployed’ ICU units that can be retrofitted to site specific conditions across the country. Up to 500 of these units can be built, deployed, and installed within 10 days. 

Additionally, despite the uncertain environment, Bialek has been able to keep all team members employed.

 

Common Market

The Common Market has rapidly and effectively transformed operations in response to this ever-evolving pandemic environment.  Honoring the safety of their shoppers and staff, Common Market has implemented several safety protocols such as; daily high-risk shopper hours, extensive social distancing measures (one-way aisles), online shopping for curbside pickup and delivery options and much more.  To recognize and support their staff, Common Market instituted hero pay for the efforts of their hard-working staff and when the need for additional staff arose, they made it a priority to hire local service industry members affected by closures.  In addition to making a sizeable food donation to Frederick Health workers, Common Market is extending their 5% discount, originally set to expire in April, for Health Care Workers and First Responders through the entire month of May.  

The Common Market has worked tirelessly to ensure their shelves remain stocked as best possible and is humbled to be a continued health food and product staple for the Frederick community. 

Read more about their efforts here.

 

Founding Farmers, Farmers Spirits Distillery and Farmers Restaurant Group

The Farmers Restaurant Group team developed a complete e-commerce platform to allow customers to order 800-plus supermarket staples alongside prepared foods and cocktails, schedule pick-up times, and have groceries loaded into their vehicles curbside from its locations in DC, Maryland and Virginia. Farmers Spirits Distillery also turned their distillery into a hand sanitizer production line.

They also saw an opportunity to give back by serving the needs of the people in all of D.C.’s eight wards, where some couldn’t find adequate grocery carriers. 

Read more about their pivot here.

 

Hatch Exhibits

Soon after making the difficult decision to furlough his employees, Chris McCormick, President of Hatch, realized that he could transform his Maryland factory, typically used to fabricate colorful displays and pop-up exhibition booths, to make Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).

Chris and his wife Tracy, along with the rest of the team quickly worked to develop prototypes of gowns and face shields and have delivered more than 20,000 products to hospitals in need of PPE.

Read more about their story here.

 

Lake County Sheriff’s Office

The Lake County Florida Sheriff’s Office has expanded its textile program, in which low risk inmates make and sew uniforms, shirts and prison jumpsuits, to respond to the COVID-19 crisis. Inmates have been trained to make protective masks for healthcare workers, fire and rescue squads and senior citizens in assisted living facilities. They have delivered thousands of masks so far and have inspired other agencies to implement similar programs.

Read more about their efforts here.

 

RASA Grill

As a result of the international pandemic, RASA Grill quickly pivoted to offer delivery and takeout/pickup service to their customers — but they have gone even further — by joining Jose Andres’ and World Central Kitchen, to expand their operations and provide thousands of free meals to school children, their staff and their families, grocery workers and hospital workers fighting on the front lines.

Read more about their efforts here.

 

ThinkWell

ThinkWell, an organization focused on building resilient health systems in low and middle income countries, has been working across Asia and Africa to help governments with their COVID-19 response. Currently, ThinkWell is helping countries increase their private-sector testing capacity, secure PPE through innovative supply chain arrangements, develop patient screening protocols, and support the national budgeting process for recovery. ThinkWell is also working with multi-lateral banks to develop loan programs for hard-hit countries and innovative financing solutions for potential COVID-19 vaccines and treatments.

Read more about ThinkWell’s other COVID-19 initiatives here.   

 

Twin Valley Distillers

Twin Valley Distillers found a novel way to keep working and serve the community at the same time — by turning their production line of whiskey and rum into a hand sanitizer factory. 

Read the full story, as reported by WJLA, here.

 

Vigene Biosciences

Vigene Biosciences has joined the fight against COVID-19.  They now have 2020 GMP manufacturing slots to help manufacture the vaccines for COVID-19 in the following 3 categories:

  • Adenovirus GMP production expressing certain COVID-19 antigen;
  • GMP AAV-delivered COVID-19 vaccine; and
  • GMP Plasmid or Bacmid based COVID-19 vaccine.

Read more about their work here.