Group names Longietti state official of year

State Rep. Mark Longietti of Hermitage, D-7th District

HERMITAGE – State Rep. Mark Longietti said he was humbled to be named a 2019 State Official of the Year by Life Sciences of Pennsylvania.

The award is given to state governmental officials who have distinguished themselves as leaders supporting the life sciences community.

“It just captured my imagination,” said Longietti, D-7, Hermitage. “These are cutting edge developments that extend people’s lives, save their lives and provide better quality of life.”

Life Science of Pennsylvania is the largest trade organization for life sciences companies, with more than 800 member organizations across the state.

“Over half of their membership are companies that have 10 employees or less and they’re really the innovators,” Longietti said. “They’re coming up with the new cures and new advancements in life sciences.”

Longietti, who is co-chair of the House Life Sciences Caucus, said he is honored to be recognized by a group that provides such important work on behalf of science-based industries.

“Discoveries by researchers in the biotech, biomedical, pharmaceutical and other fields lead to vaccines, breakthrough treatments and other tools that help us fight disease and live longer, healthier lives,” he said.

Also receiving the award was state Rep. Tim Briggs, D-Montgomery, who is co-chair of the state House Life Sciences Caucus with Longietti.

In addition to the life sciences companies producing cutting edge developments, Longietti said the organizations are innovators.

“Innovations in botanic and environmental sciences and crop technologies lead to advances that produce heartier, more disease-resistant crops that bolster our farming industry,” Longietti said.

Longietti said the life sciences community contributes to a healthier population and a stronger economy.

“So it’s vital that we continue to support these innovators,” he said. “We’re trying to establish a system where Pennsylvania is known for life sciences advancements.”

Longietti said it’s exciting to have this level of recognition.

“It’s always humbling to a degree to know that you’ve been selected out of those that could have been named,” Longietti said. “But it’s something I believe in to help people, Pennsylvanians and the economy.”

Follow Melissa Klaric on Twitter and Facebook @HeraldKlaric, email: mklaric@sharonherald.com

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