The 2014 Innovators' Dinner
The 2014 Innovators' Dinner
UNHInnovation hosted the annual Innovators’ Dinner on October 9th to celebrate the intellectual property achievements of the past year. Faculty, staff, and students gathered in Huddleston Hall to recognize the collective hard work that resulted in 124 license agreements, 68 innovation disclosures, six patents filed, six patents issued, two trademarks registered, over $500,000 in royalty income, and upcoming initiatives geared towards entrepreneurial creation, development, and support.
The evening started off in the best way possible: with drinks, hors d'oeuvres, and live music. Attendees settled down at tables decorated with beautiful pumpkins and gourds that were developed by Brent Loy, plant biologist at the NH Agricultural Experiment Station and namesake of the J. Brent Loy UNH Innovator of the Year award. The centerpieces were cultivated at the Woodman Horticultural Research Farm and generously donated for the event.
Two very exciting new programs were announced during the presentation portion of the evening: The Peter T. Paul Entrepreneurship Center and the UNH Entrepreneurship Network. The Entrepreneurship Center will be the university’s interdisciplinary, co-curricular home for entrepreneurship and will facilitate the development of UNH creativity from intangible ideas into viable assets. This will benefit the public by providing innovative ideas and economic expansion opportunities; the innovators by giving them a means to commercialize their intellectual property; and the university by promulgating and protecting UNH research. Marc Sedam, Associate Vice Provost for Innovation and New Ventures, will be the Founding Director of the center and is open to ideas about how to best utilize the center.
The UNH Entrepreneurship Network will engage highly-experienced business professionals with the new generation of entrepreneurs. In a mutually beneficial relationship, young entrepreneurs will receive guidance, support, advice, and the accumulation of their mentors’ massive industry knowledge. Mentors will invest in the future of the economy by creating a legacy: making sure that their wisdom and experience go towards helping tomorrow’s business leaders, while opening themselves up to dynamic ideas and advancement.
The 2014 innovators that were celebrated included first-time disclosers of an innovation, innovators of licensed products, patent recipients, and trademark recipients. Dr. Tom Laue was honored as this year’s UNH Innovator of the Year. Dr. Laue is a professor in the Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Biomedical Sciences. He is the Director of the Bimolecular Interaction Technologies Center and the Center to Advance Molecular Interaction Science. Dr. Laue is the co-founder of the start-up company Spin Analytical, which licenses technology that Dr. Laue helped to develop at UNH.
In addition to filling pockets and purses with pumpkins and gourds, attendees were also given items that were the fruits of UNH innovations. Gift bags included samples of eco-friendly dishwasher detergent from Itaconix, a start-up company co-founded by former Materials Science professor Yvon Durant; seed packets of Brent Loy-developed pumpkins licensed to and kindly donated by Johnny’s Selected Seeds; and bookmarks from Prevention Innovations, a program from the College of Liberal Arts that aims to end domestic violence and stalking.
Program Support Assistant, UNHInnovation