Covering a patently positive storyWritten by Lisa Renee Ward | | email@example.com
A common complaint about the media is that it doesn’t do enough to promote good news; it would rather focus on bad news and controversy.
I was invited to attend a Jan. 28 event at Imaging Systems Technology (IST), which was celebrating patent No. 50. I expected there would be quite a bit of media coverage — 50 patents is a big deal for just about any company, but especially for one that is a small firm here in Toledo.
After learning Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur was expected, and seeing the name cards for dignitaries who were invited, like Mayor Mike Bell, it was surprising when it became apparent myself and my husband, Miguel Roman, who was acting as my photographer, were “the” media and Kaptur was the only elected official.
As part of Kaptur’s comments, she said, “Thank you first for staying in Toledo, for believing in this region, for giving your lives to this region, in research and development in one of the highest tech fields that exists globally. You are really rare and you are crucial to us as we try to build a new future in this 21st century.”
Everyone from IST and Deep Springs Technology (DST) was proud of what they had accomplished. To describe it as amazing would be an understatement.
In addition to the many things they are working on, including military armor, IST created the first large touch screen in 1998 for a 42-inch plasma display and continues to lead in that market, making more than 30 different models.
As part of the celebration, awards were handed out in recognition; Kaptur was asked to present the awards. Donald K. Wedding was the first to receive an award and was given a flag that had been flown over the Capitol by Kaptur.
Oliver Strbik, James Butcher, Ed Peters, Jessica Davis, Robert Wenzlaff, Jeff Guy and Tricia Wedding received their awards to the applause of friends, family and guests.
Then Daniel Wedding II was honored with a “Young Inventors Award” for receiving his first patent, at 9 years old. He developed a unique design for a boomerang. That’s not only an accomplishment, it’s a testament to his parents and his grandfather, Donald K. Wedding, for inspiring such a love of technology and science.
Toledo Free Press posted a news brief Jan. 29 about Kaptur’s comments, patent No. 50 and DST receiving an invitation to participate in the Vehicle Armor Challenge sponsored by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), the research and development office for the U.S. Department of Defense.
Vicki W. Kurtz, vice president of IST, said on Jan. 31 that IST was formed in 1997, DST in May of 2007 as a spinoff of IST to handle the structural applications of spheres.
“We love this city. It’s a great place to raise a family and you can live comfortably on a modest income,” Kurtz said.
The office of Mayor Bell was contacted Jan. 28 for a comment about IST and responded Feb. 2 via e-mail:
“IST has been a quiet success story, but to achieve a milestone of 50 patents in the company history is certainly remarkable,” said Toledo Mayor Michael P. Bell. “It is the work of companies like IST and their spin-offs that contribute to technological advancements that demonstrate Northwest Ohio’s research and development capabilities are helping to reinvent our local economy.”
After I shared the news with Councilman D. Michael Collins, he contacted IST and toured its facilities. Collins is sponsoring a resolution to honor IST for its entrepreneurial accomplishments that should be before City Council on Feb. 22.
Journalist and novelist Pete Hamill once said, “The best newspapermen I know are those most thrilled by the daily pump of city room excitements; they long fondly for a ‘good murder;’ they pray that assassinations, wars, catastrophes break on their editions.”
It is exciting to be involved in a breaking news story, to shine a light on things people would prefer to keep in the dark. But good news can create just as many emotions —pride, joy, accomplishment. Just ask anyone from IST.
Toledo Free Press Web Editor Lisa Renee Ward operates the political blog GlassCityJungle.com.