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Turning Innovation Into Enterprise

2013 Nominees

Innovator of the Year

Knox Van Dyke Ph.D.
Increasing the effectiveness and potency of anti-cancer drugs; The development of tetrandrine to treat and/or prevent drug resistance or metastasis in cancer treatment.

Houbing Song Ph.D.
Developing Cyber-Physical Systems to enhance safety in underground mines, bridges and dams, landslide detection, and smart grid.

Ever J. Barbero, Dr. Eduardo M. Sosa, Dr. Gregory J. Thompson    Development of solutions to protect underwater tunnels with creation of the Resilient Tunnel Plug.

Jingwei_Xie_inlabJingwei Xie, Ph.D.
Using nanotechnology to develop products that can be used to improve treatment of burns and other skin wounds.





Jim Smith photoJames E. Smith Ph.D.
Actively involved in providing and enhancing technology solutions for the commercial and industrial marketplaces; involved with formation of 10 startups; holds 32 patents with 30 pending applications; mentor; instructor.




Kay and Gary McClureKay McClure & Gary McClure
Successfully started and grew Walhonde, a global leader in tube and pipe alignment tools for welding; holder of several patents with customers ranging from the U.S. Navy, NASA and a number of Fortune 500 companies, along with international firms.




Russ Safreed. left, and Mark McClungCharles (Mark) McClung & Russ Safreed
Successfully started and grew MarTek, maker of the patented “Chicken Switch” device used to improve workplace safety around circuit breakers and sold throughout North America and abroad.




Alexander V Stolin
Developed a novel, patent-pending device to improve the performance of high‐resolution radiation detectors for use in medical applications.

Jinghai Yi & Timothy Nurkiewicz Designed
Applied for patent and licensed a nanoparticle aerosol generator for use in inhalation toxicology and other applications.

Hota Gangarao 
Redefined the boundaries of fiber reinforced polymer (FRP) composite materials by economically applying them to civil and military infrastructure systems with innovative fabric architectures, resin systems, mass-manufacturing processes and structural designs.

JWBoydJonathan Boyd
Using information about cell signaling to enhance information systems security.





xingbo liu portrait WVU_ photographyXingbo Liu
Development of solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) interconnect; work on Integrated Gasification Fuel Cell system, and super alloys for steam turbine blades and advanced battery technologies.




Investor Recognition Award

Frontier-Twitter-LogoFrontier Communications/ Dana E. Waldo
Expanding broadband access to residential and business customers throughout West Virginia.





imgres-2West Virginia Capital Access Program/ Andy Zulauf & Michele O’Connor
Led creation of WV Capital Access Program, which has retained 481 jobs, created 366 new potential jobs, leveraged more than $57 million in private capital, and enabled the growth of 27 companies.





Outstanding Woman In Technology

valerie-evanoffValerie Evanoff
Founder of Cross Resolve, which applies scientific rigor to the business of creating technical solutions in biometrics, forensics and identity intelligence.





emaEmanuela Marasco
Researcher of multi-biometric systems that integrate evidence from multiple biometric sources, (i.e., different biometric traits, multiple samples, multiple algorithms) in order to enhance the recognition accuracy.




Charlotte Weber_RCBI Director & CEOCharlotte Weber
Leader of advanced manufacturing programs and initiatives in West Virginia, the region, and the nation.





Stephanie Skolik
Practicing ophthalmologist and researcher who holds multiple patents for ophthalmic medical devices.

Debra Rohrer
President of GeoRhea, which offers cost-effective GIS services utilizing Small Unmanned Aircraft (SUAV) drones in a variety of industry applications.

R&D100-DSC_0039_1Ranjani Siriwardane
At the forefront of chemical looping combustion (CLC), a revolutionary technology under development at NETL that will enable the clean use of West Virginia’s coal and shale gas resources.




Jeanne FinsteinJeanne Finstein
Development of high-tech learning products, including virtual physics labs, for educational enhancement in the classroom and through mobile devices.





Fonda Holehouse
Award winning professor who developed a new technical elective, “Technology Entrepreneurship and Enterprise Development,” and has mentored 55 semifinalists, 24 finalists, and 4 winners in the West Virginia Statewide Collegiate Business Plan Competition, while also creating the WV Technology Entrepreneurship Challenge.

Applying innovative solutions in agriculture, farming, energy, sustainability and education.





Start Up Innovation of the Year

Alternative Fuel Solutions of WV
Facility that converts aftermarket vehicles to operate on natural gas, propane, or other alternative fuels.

WVU College of Law, Entrepreneurship and Innovation Law Clinic
Providing more than $4 million in critical legal and business services to emerging entrepreneurs, innovators and businesses throughout WV.

Pioneered an innovative math and science learning system for middle school that can be used by students with visual impairments and by sighted students.

Develop a quantitative test of movement impairment for use in orthopaedic-related rehabilitation.

Student Innovator of the Year

emaEmanuela Marasco
Researcher of multi-biometric systems that integrate evidence from multiple biometric sources, (i.e., different biometric traits, multiple samples, multiple algorithms) in order to enhance the recognition accuracy.




HovemeyerRebecca Hovemeyer
Created time-saving apps now in use by Marshall University students to make academic life easier—a Class Schedule Generator and a Student Success App.





Harold Vass
Led the Meteor Consulting team, which developed a solution for efficiently and effectively dealing with unmarketable methane and similar byproducts during natural gas drilling; a finalist in the WV Technology Entrepreneurship Challenge.

BPC Rachael and Caleb Posing EZReaderRacheal Fetty and Caleb Creathouse
Created EZ Reader, an electronic voting machine ballot reader to be used to read the 5 percent of ballots mandated by law to be read by hand.





Floco foundersRicky Kirkendall, Logan Spears and Sam Mclaughlin
Created Flocco Apps, a software development company that has already worked with a dozen clients—including Fortune 500 company Mercer and non‐profit American Foundation for the Blind—to develop mobile apps for a variety of purposes.




PoseyBrandon Posey
Recent work has simplified the configuration of high‐performance computing systems at Clemson University and developed a mobile app to help users find parking spots.