(Hauppauge, NY- October 1, 2012)- Suffolk County Executive Steven Bellone praised tech giant Microsoft today, as more than 575 people gathered for a ribbon-cutting for the new Microsoft store at the Walt Whitman Shops in Huntington. Microsoft opened one of their first two retail stores in New York State at the Walt Whitman Shops, also using the occassion to donate $1.5 million in software grants to local community organizations who are partnering with Microsoft to help close the digital divide for young Long Islanders. On the same day, Microsoft opened another store in Westchester County.
Bellone praised Microsoft for bringing 50 new jobs to Huntington, calling it a “smart strategic move” as the mall is located in the middle of a bi-county region of more than three million people. “I want to welcome Microsoft to Suffolk County, and wish the company great success as they begin to create a retail presence here,” said Bellone.
Deputy County Executive and Commissioner of Economic Development & Planning, Joanne Minieri, who spoke at the ribbon-cutting said, “It’s a big deal to be able to boast the first Microsoft store in the state. Microsoft is making a significant investment in our community with jobs and resources to bridge the digital divide. We look forward to working with Microsoft to grow their presence in Suffolk.” Suffolk Commissioner of Information Technology Don Rogers joined Minieri, along with Town of Huntington officials at the event.
During the ribbon-cutting ceremony, David McAughan, COO of Microsoft retail stores and Store Manager Stephen Melnick presented $1.5 million in software grants to the local chapters of Junior Achievement ($1M), The Children’s Aid Society ($250K), and The Mentoring Partnership of Long Island ($250K).