Research Communications

Finalists announced for southeastern Ohio’s 2013 Innovation Awards 

March 18 gala to celebrate regional entrepreneurs, innovators

ATHENS, Ohio (Feb. 20, 2014)—Forty-six individuals in southeastern Ohio have been named finalists for the 2013 Innovation Awards, which celebrate entrepreneurship and innovation in the region.

The winners in each of the six categories will be announced at the Innovation Awards gala, to be held from 6 to 9 p.m. on Tuesday, March 18 at Ohio University's Baker Center Ballroom.

"This pool of nominees is evidence of an active and vibrant ecosystem of creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship in southeastern Ohio," said Lynn Gellermann, executive director of TechGROWTH Ohio, which hosts the annual recognition event. "Both public institutions and private entities are working hard in our region to create jobs, businesses and technologies that can make a positive impact on our state and national economies."

TechGROWTH Ohio is a program funded by the state Third Frontier program, Ohio University and industry sponsors to provide investments and business expertise to startup companies in southeastern Ohio. TechGROWTH Ohio, administered by the Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs, is part of an entrepreneurial ecosystem that includes programs that support university and regional technology commercialization and small business incubation.

An external panel of judges is reviewing the 2013 Innovation Awards finalists and will select the recipient in each category.

The 2013 Innovation Awards finalists are:

Entrepreneur of the Year: Aaron Thomas, Class "A" Sounds; Ben Lachman, Nice Mohawk Limited; Jessica and Jason Kopelwitz, Fluff Bakery and Rickshaw Thai; Joseph Kittle, Molecular Technologies Laboratories and Applied Bioventures; Sean Jones, QuickLoadz; Tim Rathbun, SUREnergy; Tim Matheney and Justin Thompson, T&M Tactical; Todd Hawkins, Tesla Nanocoatings; William Wilson, Apex Sports.

Green Innovation: Todd Hawkins, Tesla Nanocoatings; Roger Wilkens, Center for the Creation of Cooperation; Matthew Blankenhorn, Aluminastic; Kyle O'Keefe, Rural Action; Kent Shields and Gerardine Botte, E3 Clean Technologies; Gil Fuleki, BioStar Energy Group; Francis McFadden, Ohio University; Austin Stahl, Archer Technologies.

Outstanding Faculty Innovation: Lakhdar Hammoudi, Ohio University-Chillicothe; Kelly McCall, Ohio University; John Bowditch, Ohio University; Hao Chen, Ohio University; Gerardine Botte, Ohio University; Frank Kraft, Ohio University; Eric Masson, Ohio University; Dave Bayless; Ohio University; Brooke Hallowell, Ohio University.

Woman in Innovation: Sara Marrs, Athens County Economic Development Council; Michelle Greenfield, Third  Sun  Solar; Kerry Pigman, Ed Map; Gerardine Botte, Ohio University; Carol Humphreys, Muskingum County Business Incubator; Carol Clark, X2 Angels.

Social Innovation: Patty Mitchell and Robert Lockheed, Collaborative Art International; Kyle McPeck, TicketCrush.com; James Hall, Corporation for Ohio Appalachian Development (COAD) Ohio Weatherization Training Center; Jennifer Simon, Ohio University Innovation Center; Chang Liu and Siang Lee Hong, Ohio University; Ben Lachman, AthensWorks; Andre Sappington, BEAM Global Initiatives.

Outstanding Student Innovation:
Lingying Tong, Ohio University; Eric Martin, Ohio University; Chad Mourning and Scott Nykl, Affine Technologies; Ashley Williams, Ohio University; Alex Lunka, Eco2Capture.

Registration for the Innovation Awards is open through Monday, March 10. The $30 per person fee includes dinner and a networking event. To register, visit www.gala.ohio.edu.

In addition, the Innovation Awards will feature the presentation of the 2013 Konneker Medal for Commercialization and Entrepreneurship, which is awarded to current and former Ohio University faculty members or students each year. The program is managed by the Vice President for Research and Creative Activity.

Contacts: Andrea Gibson, director of research communications, (740) 597-2166(740) 597-2166, gibsona@ohio.edu; Jane New, executive-in-residence for TechGROWTH Ohio, (740) 597-1551(740) 597-1551, new@ohio.edu