Von Paris is wearing a Maryland Strong shirt and mask, part of Route One Apparel’s coronavirus pandemic-inspired line

Good News Stories of the Week – Featuring the Baltimore Spirits Company, Route One Apparel, and More.

The coronavirus pandemic and its impacts are changing daily and are hard to predict, but the stream of good news, selfless deeds, neighborly kindnesses and remarkable innovation coming out of the BioHealth Capital Region is flowing steadily.

From small acts of kindness between individuals to big, multi-partner collaborations, individuals, businesses, academic institutions and public/private partnerships are giving their all to solve COVID-19 related problems and meet unmet needs created by the pandemic. 

Here is this week’s BioBuzz Good News Roundup:

Baltimore Small Batch Whiskey Maker Boosts Hand Sanitizer Supply

Baltimore Spirits Company has deployed its small-batch whiskey-making skills to produce approximately 3,000 gallons of hand sanitizer while keeping up with production of its signature spirits. The distillery discovered that a waste product generated during the distilling process could be used to make hand sanitizer that was badly needed in the community and for frontline healthcare workers in Baltimore. A team of five went to work producing small batches of the hand sanitizer, 265 gallons of which was purchased by Johns Hopkins. The pivot to producing hand sanitizer has not only helped deliver a needed supply to the community, but it has also generated revenue to support payroll, allowing their team to remain employed during a time of uncertainty. 

Dunkirk, Maryland’s Patriot Spaces Converts Steel PODSⓇ into COVID-19 Medical Stations

PATRIOT Spaces, a division of PATRIOT located in Dunkirk, delivered the first of what could be 100s of converted PODS storage containers to the United Medical Center in Washington, D.C. The company delivered six PODS storage containers that had been converted to COVID-19 patient medical stations. These 8’ x 16’ foot PODS were quickly converted to medical stations with negative air pressure controls, self-contained air conditioning, standard medical electrical service and lighting, a nurse’s call button and easily sanitized finishes. The company was awarded a contract by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Baltimore District, to convert the PODS into Containerized Medical Stations (CMS). With some 40,000 PODS ready for conversion and 12 warehouses across the U.S. the company has the potential to provide significant help to healthcare facilities battling COVID-19.  

University of Maryland Alumni Produces Maryland-Themed Masks and Tee Shirts

Ali von Paris, a University of Maryland graduate and Route One Apparel’s founder and CEO, in the company’s headquarters on May 1, 2020. Von Paris is wearing a Maryland Strong shirt and mask, part of Route One Apparel’s coronavirus pandemic-inspired line.
(Julia Nikhinson/The Diamondback)

Ali von Paris, a 2012 graduate of the University of Maryland’s business school, is the Founder and CEO of Route One Apparel, an e-commerce company located in Timonium, Maryland that sells Maryland state pride-themed items. When the pandemic set in, her company pivoted to making social distancing themed tee shirts. Shortly thereafter, Paris was getting requests for face coverings and the company adapted once again, producing state of Maryland-themed face masks. The company even instituted a buy one, give one program where the company would donate a mask to a healthcare worker or first responder for each mask purchased. 

Baltimore’s Keytech Creates New Positive Air Pressure Air Respirator Design

When the call went out from Baltimore-area healthcare systems for personal protective equipment (PPE) for the fight against COVID-19, Keytech, and their network of partners — including Johns Hopkins, the state of Maryland, LaunchPort, Engineered Medical Systems, DeWalt and Emma Bigelow  — answered the call. The company set out to design a new PAPR or positive pressure air respirator that blows air into a hood through a HEPA filter to create positive air conditions that block contamination. The company recently announced it had completed its design on May 1 and was in the process of ramping up PAPR production within the next few weeks. The company’s goal is to donate around 100 PAPR devices to local hospitals, which have faced challenges obtaining the necessary PAPRs through traditional supply chain channels.  

TEDCO - Leading Innovation to Market

Calvert County National Guardsman Creates GoFundMe to Assist County Residents Impacted by COVID-19

National Guardsman Andrew Ellison wanted to do something to help his fellow county residents that had lost their jobs because of the coronavirus. Just before he was going to be deployed, he reached out to the local nonprofit Calvert Family Advocates, which is part of the Maryland Association of Social Services Boards (MASSB) Foundation, and pitched his GoFundMe idea. Together, Ellison and Calvert Family Advocates established a $25,000 GoFundMe campaign; the fundraising effort opened just a week ago and is actively seeking donors.

If interested in helping, you can donate by clicking here.

Read more local Good News we’ve found in and round the region 👏

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Steven Surdez

Steven Surdez

Principal at StoryCore
Steve has over 20 years experience in copywriting, developing brand messaging and creating marketing strategies across a wide range of industries, including the biopharmaceutical, senior living, commercial real estate, IT and renewable energy sectors, among others. He is currently the Principal/Owner of StoryCore, a Frederick, Maryland-based content creation and execution consultancy focused on telling the unique stories of Maryland organizations.

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