RadioBDC Logo
| Listen Live
Text size +

Great Hair, Comfy Shoes: Some Pics from Innovation Day at the State House

Posted by Scott Kirsner  October 15, 2009 02:00 PM

E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article

It was fun moderating a panel of venture capitalists and entrepreneurs at the Massachusetts State House this morning, at the first-ever Innovation Day. It was organized by the New England Venture Capital Association, as well as the MA Legislative Biotechnology Caucus and the Joint Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies.

Surprising, and a bit disappointing, was how few legislators and staffers showed up -- but it was apparently a busy day at the State House. (My general experience about our elected and appointed officials is that they will show up only if asked to speak. Listening they are not so good at.) Economic development secretary Greg Bialecki, who is trying to position himself as a champion of innovation in MA, was on the agenda to speak but didn't show up.

Those gripes aside, here are four pictures from the event:

During the panel, Amir Nashat of Polaris Venture Partners happened to mention Living proof, a beauty products company in Cambridge that spun out of MIT research. Polaris is the company's sole backer. Nashat mentioned that a new product from the company, called Full, helps make hair look thicker, and is only being sold on QVC right now. (According to a company blog post, they sold 40,000 bottles in a half hour last month on the shopping network.) I had to ask Nashat if he was using the product, and he said he was. This was definitely the first time a venture capitalist has pitched a QVC product to me...

Other panelists agreed that his hair looked great.


Being a hard-core investigative journalist, I also asked CEO Scott Savitz what shoes he was wearing. He said they were from Donald Pliner (on sale now for just $194.95!), and had become popular with several of the other Shoebuy execs. Those are Savitz's feet at the bottom of the pic.

The other feet in the picture are (top) Eran Egozy, co-founder of Harmonix Music Systems (by Rockport -- he had to check), and (middle) Ellen Rubin, co-founder of CloudSwitch (by Nike.)


Here's the view from the podium. Someone from WPI's robotics program is asking a question:


This last one is from author and social media strategist Joselin Mane (@joselinmane on Twitter). Yes, I did consider moderating the panel while standing on that balcony, for maximum Mussolini-esque authority.


E-mail this article

Invalid E-mail address
Invalid E-mail address

Sending your article

2 comments so far...
  1. Hi Scott- I was the front row Tweeter. Didn't get around to introducing myself, but someday... Here are some highlights from my perspective (pasted tweets): - Scott Kirsner asked innovators about policy changes, answers to follow...

    How gov't can help inno: hard to get int'l staff b/c visa issues, cultural issues w/idea exchange, branding of area. Make history here...

    @massgovernor Culture of entrepreneurial spirit is strong, gov't program like angel investor/seed $ would be very helpful. "Stay in MA"

    @massgovernor @mayortommenino @bostonredevelop inno day panel: there was also a big plea for stronger EE policy, esp for public buildings.

    Just met kiki mills of mitx. What they do for communications 2.0 should be applied for open gov't... Working on it, slowly. THX kiki! - How much to do this job?!

    (One extra just for fun)

    Great job- thanks,

    Posted by Sam Hammar October 16, 09 08:55 AM
  1. I was sorry to miss the proceedings, but I got an invitation to press the ceremonial plunger at the implosion of the smokestacks in Lawrence yesterday. Yes, innovation is great, but it's hard to beat blowing things up, wouldn't you agree?

    Posted by Greg Bialecki October 16, 09 12:39 PM


BetaBoston technology news logo
Innovation and technology news that matters, on a new website from the Boston Globe, featuring Scott Kirsner and other original reporting.

About Scott Kirsner

Scott Kirsner was part of the team that launched in 1995, and has been writing a column for the Globe since 2000. His work has also appeared in Wired, Fast Company, The New York Times, BusinessWeek, Newsweek, and Variety. Scott is also the author of the books "Fans, Friends & Followers" and "Inventing the Movies," was the editor of "The Convergence Guide: Life Sciences in New England," and was a contributor to "The Good City: Writers Explore 21st Century Boston." Scott also helps organize several local events on entrepreneurship, including the Nantucket Conference and Future Forward. Here's some background on how Scott decides what to cover, and how to pitch him a story idea.

On Facebook

Subscribe via e-mail

Get Innovation Economy updates via e-mail. Enter your address and click 'Subscribe':

More from Scott


March 3: Web Innovators Group
Demos, drinks, and schmoozing at the Royal Sonesta in Cambridge.

March 7-8: MassDigi Game Challenge
Competition for aspiring game developers... plus panels and keynotes related to the business of play.

April 3-4: Mass Biotech Annual Meeting
Issues facing the region's life sciences community.