The 2016 Innovators’ Dinner
The 2016 Innovators’ Dinner
UNHInnovation (UNHI) hosted the sixth annual Innovators’ Dinner on October 20th to celebrate and encourage the commercialization of innovative ideas generated through UNH research. The dinner was held in the Huddleston Ballroom where faculty, staff, students, and industry partners gathered to recognize the UNH community for its hard work, which resulted in 190 licenses, 13 patent applications, and a record $830,000 in commercialization revenue in FY16.
The evening began with a cocktail hour, and guests enjoyed passed hors d'oeuvres, a selection of craft beer and Peter Paul wines, and live music from a jazz band of talented UNH students. After the cocktail hour, guests took their seats and were served a delicious three course plated dinner crafted by UNH catering. The dinner tables and the room at large were decorated with beautiful pumpkins and gourds that were developed by Brent Loy, plant biologist at the NH Agricultural Experiment Station. The pumpkins were cultivated at the Woodman Horticultural Research Farm and generously donated for the event. As a thank you to all the attendees, each guest was given a small wooden keepsake that was handcrafted by students at the Peter T. Paul Entrepreneurship Center’s new Makerspace, a student volunteer-run organization equipped with tools and materials to help students create and develop their ideas.
During the dinner presentation, Marc Sedam, managing director of UNHI and vice provost of innovation and new ventures, outlined UNH’s successful commercialization activity and UNHI’s notable achievements throughout the past fiscal year. The 2016 innovators that were celebrated included first-time disclosers of an innovation, innovators of licensed products, and trademark recipients. In Marc’s message, he reminded the audience that while it is important to recognize the individual contributions of each UNH innovator, their work is a piece of the bigger picture. Many of the outputs of the university’s $110 million research portfolio create positive social change and help to cement UNH as an economic engine in New Hampshire and beyond.
As an excellent example of the positive impact of UNH intellectual property, UNHI announced at the dinner that the Office of Environmental Health and Safety and the Research Computing Center were this year’s winners of the Innovators of the Year Award for their collaborative work on UNHCEMS®, an online system for the inventory and use management of chemical stock, biological agents, radioactive materials, and hazardous waste. The system was first implemented at UNH in 2001 as a direct response to an EPA fine and UNH first licensed it for external use in 2003. Since this initial license, UNHCEMS has been implemented at more than 30 academic and commercial institutions to ensure lab safety and has generated more than $1 million in cumulative royalties.
From the room décor to the innovator awards, the Annual Innovators’ Dinner is an opportunity for UNHI to showcase and celebrate the creative outputs of the university and to look ahead to the goals and objectives of the coming year and beyond. UNHI is already planning for next year’s dinner and we look forward to celebrating the innovations and accomplishments of FY17.
Are you a UNH innovator with a big idea? Check out our website to learn more about innovation disclosure and how UNHI can help you reach your commercialization goals. https://innovation.unh.edu/disclose-innovation