U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $15 Million in Entrepreneurs Across the Nation to Move Ideas to Market, Promote American Innovation

| November 15, 2016

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $15 Million in Entrepreneurs Across the Nation to Move Ideas to Market, Promote American Innovation
WASHINGTON – U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker today announced 35 organizations — including nonprofits, institutions of higher education, and entrepreneurship-focused organizations — from 19 states will receive nearly $15 million to create and expand cluster-focused, proof-of-concept and commercialization programs, and early-stage seed capital funds through the Economic Development Administration’s (EDA) Regional Innovation Strategies (RIS) program. The diverse group of awardees, selected from a pool of more than 215 applicants, reach urban and rural areas across the United States, including the program’s first investments in historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in the South; a women-focused, early-stage capital fund in Texas; a Native American-centered, proof-of-concept program in Oklahoma; and urban innovation hubs honing in on fashion technology (New York) and social innovation (Louisiana). Additionally, six awards are being made in EDA’s Investing in Manufacturing Community Partnership regions.

Spotlight

The childhood obesity epidemic in America is a national health crisis. One in every three children (31.7%) ages 2-19 is overweight or obese. The life-threatening consequences of this epidemic create a compelling and critical call for action that cannot be ignored. Obesity is estimated to cause 112,000 deaths per year in the United States, and one third of all children born in the year 2000 are expected to develop diabetes during their lifetime. The current generation may even be on track to have a shorter lifespan than their parents. Along with the effects on our children’s health, childhood obesity imposes substantial economic costs. Each year, obese adults incur an estimated $1,429 more in medical expenses than their normal-weight peers. Overall, medical spending on adults that was attributed to obesity topped approximately $40 billion in 1998, and by 2008, increased to an estimated $147 billion. Excess weight is also costly during childhood, estimated at $3 billion per year in direct medical costs.


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Spotlight

The childhood obesity epidemic in America is a national health crisis. One in every three children (31.7%) ages 2-19 is overweight or obese. The life-threatening consequences of this epidemic create a compelling and critical call for action that cannot be ignored. Obesity is estimated to cause 112,000 deaths per year in the United States, and one third of all children born in the year 2000 are expected to develop diabetes during their lifetime. The current generation may even be on track to have a shorter lifespan than their parents. Along with the effects on our children’s health, childhood obesity imposes substantial economic costs. Each year, obese adults incur an estimated $1,429 more in medical expenses than their normal-weight peers. Overall, medical spending on adults that was attributed to obesity topped approximately $40 billion in 1998, and by 2008, increased to an estimated $147 billion. Excess weight is also costly during childhood, estimated at $3 billion per year in direct medical costs.

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