Leo J. Brancato, Mechanical Engineering 1950, was the inventor of screw thread inserts for which he holds more than 11 patents.   The patents are for specialized uses that include securing an artificial tooth into the bone structure of a jaw, self-locking wire inserts, adjustable coil inserts, and coil spring inserts.  After graduating from The Cooper Union, he received his Masters in Mechanical Engineering from Columbia University in 1952.

Leo Brancato began his career as a design engineer for Ermold Corporation from 1946 to 1951.  He worked as a research and development engineer for the Heli-Coil Corporation from 1952 to 1970.  In 1970, Leo co-funded Mite Corporation and served as its President from 1974 until his retirement in 1988.  Mite Corporation was a manufacturer of industrial fasteners that produced screw thread inserts for metals and plastics.  Based in Danbury, Connecticut, the company later merged with the Heli-Coil Corporation.

Leo Brancato served as a trustee on the board of the Danbury Hospital from 1961 to 2005, on the Housatonic Regional Mental Health Council from 1965 to 1968, and as Commissioner of Conservation of Danbury from 1974 to 1979.   He was a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). He passed away in 2016.

Leo Brancato received the The Cooper Union President’s Citation in 1976 and was inducted into The Cooper Union Hall of Fame in 2009.


  1. Obituary on Legacy.com December 30, 2016 Link