Annual Innovators' Dinner
Every year, UNHInnovation hosts an Innovators’ Dinner to celebrate and encourage the commercialization of innovative ideas generated through UNH research. During the dinner, we announce the annual J. Brent Loy Innovator of the Year Award recipient. The award, named for plant geneticist J. Brent Loy who received the university’s inaugural Innovator of the Year award, honors UNH faculty and staff who have demonstrated exemplary innovation commercialization and have successfully translated their research and ideas into social and economic impact.
2017 Innovator of the Year
Learn more about Dr. Brian Calder's work
Brian joined UNH in 2000 as a research scientist in the Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping and the NOAA-UNH Joint Hydrographic Center (CCOM/JHC). He earned his masters and doctoral degrees from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, Scotland, demonstrating his expertise in computing and electrical engineering.
Brian is currently a Research Associate Professor in Ocean Engineering and the Associate Director of CCOM. His research interests include methods for error modeling, propagation and visualization, and adaptive sonar backscatter modeling.
Brian’s research has led to the development of numerous software innovations, including CUBE and CHRT. The CUBE algorithm is used to process hydrographic data to make nautical charts more automatic, objective, and faster. The software is in use around the world, starting with NOAA’s field units for processing of their data since 2006 to the Hydrographic Offices in Canada, Chile, Portugal, UK, and the US. It has also been implemented in many commercial hydrographic data processing visualization systems with 16 companies from around the world.
Brian followed-up this success with the CHRT software, an amped up version of CUBE. Brian created CHRT by pulling together a global co-development group of industrial and academic partners and leveraged his on-going relations with the NOAA Office of Coast Survey to collaborate on CHRT development and implementations in both commercial and non-commercial packages.
The Impacts of Brian’s Innovations
Brian’s CV contains a section called “Cruises”, where he has participated in or led over 50 mapping missions of various water depths around the globe, including Hawaii, British Columbia, Alaska, the Equatorial Pacific, the high Arctic aboard the icebreaker USCGC Healy, the Gulf of Mexico, and Iceland.
Brian has pioneered the use of high-resolution modern Multibeam Echosounder systems for Underwater Archaeological investigation. His archaeological mapping missions have included Scapa Flow, Orkney, Scotland, US D-Day beaches in Normandy, France, and bodies of water along the Texas/Louisiana border (to aid in the recovery of debris from the Space Shuttle Columbia in 2003).
He has also chaired the Open Navigation Surface Working Group since 2003, which created the standard for the interchange of high resolution bathymetric data.
2016 Innovators of the Year
Research Computing Center (RCC) and Office of Environmental Health Safety (EHS)
UNH creates an online system for the inventory and use management of chemical stock, biological agents, radioactive materials, and hazardous waste. This system is known as UNHCEMS.
This innovation started with a fine from the EPA in 1997 due to violations of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. From this, innovators took the opportunity to thoughtfully design, develop, and implement an online inventory management system.
This is a remarkable 20-year collaboration between two departments within UNH’s Office of Research. Under the leadership of Brad Manning (EH&S) and Patrick Messer (RCC), we have seen EH&S at the forefront, mapping out the needs, vision, and use of the system, with RCC on the backend, developing the architecture and code.
Brad and Patrick’s leadership created the space for a fluid relationship to develop between those individuals who are truly responsible for making CEMS the resiliently dynamic system that it is.
This is a story about two entities that forged an innovative partnership to provide an enterprise-level solution that benefits the students, staff, faculty, and institution.
Since UNHCEMS was first piloted in 2001 at UNH, the following has happened:
- Central processing and barcoding of every chemical on campus
- Decreased duplication of chemical purchases by virtue of chemical users able to see what chemicals are already on campus
- Reduced chemical waste and removal of outdated or excess chemicals
- Creation of door placards that clearly identifies the hazards within any given room
- Compliance with relevant legislation
- Delivery and tracking of annual training for use and care of those materials
Collectively, this translates into the improved integration of emergency services within a community, cost savings, managed risk, and a strong foundation for the growing and competitive research enterprise.
Early recognition from the EPA for CEMS led to licensing the system to Brown University in 2003, followed by an additional 30 academic and commercial licenses over the past 13 years. CEMS has generated over $1M in cumulative royalties, and provided an affordable solution for organizations to manage their hazardous material inventories, remain compliant with ever-changing, increasingly stringent federal requirements, and serve as a cornerstone for the prioritization of a culture of laboratory safety for any organization.
2015 Innovator of the Year
Prevention Innovations Research Center
The Prevention Innovations Research Center is full of extremely talented Innovators, led by Co-Founders, Jane Stapleton and Sharyn Potter.
Jane joined UNH in 1986 as an affiliate instructor in women’s studies. As an activist, administrator, policy maker, service provider, and researcher, she has worked in the field of ending sexual and relationship violence for 28 years.
Sharyn joined UNH in 1998 as an associate professor in the Department of Sociology. For the past 25 years she has been involved in sexual violence prevention as a lead researcher, sat on boards for rape crisis centers, and continues to be a vocal advocate for prevention methods.
In 2006, Prevention Innovations was formed as a research and training unit with a mission to develop, implement, and evaluate programs, policies, and practices to end sexual, relationship, and domestic violence. Since its inception, the leadership team has continued to participate in national and international research projects to meet its mission.
In January of 2015, through an internal grant initiative directed by Senior Vice Provost for Research, Jan Nisbet, Prevention Innovations became Prevention Innovations Research Center.
Since 2008, UNHInnovation has worked with Prevention Innovations. In 2011, UNHInnovation focused on the “Bringing in the Bystander” and “Know Your Power” programs and filed for federal trademark registration. Both of these programs are not only innovative, but are also the only evidence-based programs of their kind.
The Center has produced a mobile app, video game, high school program and a private school program. In addition, they have been focusing their efforts on partnering with large state school higher education systems, extending its reach through international licensing, and even building a national consortium.
- In FY15 alone, Bringing in the Bystander has been non-exclusively licensed 106 times, representing 28.5% of FY15 licenses, creating $111,000 in licensing revenue;
- The Center has brought in nearly $4Million in external research funding;
- Added six employees;
- Became the lead researcher on a study conducted by the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault;
- Won the 2015 W.K. Kellogg Foundation Community Engagement Scholarship Award and was presented in the regional finals for the 2015 C. Peter Magrath Community Engagement Scholarship Award; AND,
- Undoubtedly, the most significant achievement, they are truly changing the world.