“The Council is thrilled to celebrate these incredible inventors at the 2015 Edison Patent Awards,” said Troy Sarich, Ph.D., Research & Development Council of New Jersey Chairman and Vice President of Real World Evidence at Janssen. “Each year, the Council is impressed by the pace and quality of innovation shown by both our applicants and honorees.”
The R&D Council will also honor New Jersey Governor Chris Christie; Astronomer and NobelLaureate (Physics) Robert Woodrow Wilson, Ph.D.; and NJIT President Joel Bloom, Ed.D. for their unique contributions to the state’s STEM economy.
Robert Woodrow Wilson will receive the R&D Council's highest award, the Science & Technology Medal. This medal is awarded to individuals who have made significant contributions to the advancement of science and technology, while successfully bringing innovation from the laboratory to the marketplace. Dr. Wilson receives this award for his work discovering cosmic microwave background radiation, a scientific breakthrough that provided crucial corroboration of the Big Bang Theory. Born and raised in Houston, Dr. Wilson attended college at Rice University, where he graduated with honors in physics, and then Caltech, where he earned his Ph.D. in physics. In 1963, after earning his Ph.D., he joined Bell Laboratories in Crawford Hill where he began the work on radio astronomy that would win him the Henry Draper Medal in 1977 and the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1978. Today, he lives with his wife Betsy in Holmdel in the house they bought when he came to Bell Laboratories.
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will receive the Chairman's Award. Governor Christie was selected for his leadership in education and public policy and in particular, for signing into law the bipartisan New Jersey Medical and Health Sciences Education Restructuring Act. This law dramatically overhauled and strengthened the state's higher education system by promoting longterm and sustainable economic growth and high academic achievement, and by strengthening three hubs of higher education in the state. The law also complements the Governor's other higher education initiatives, including signing a $750 million bond referendum for capital improvements, increasing state aid to colleges and universities by $65 million, and adding $28 million in additional student financial assistance.
NJIT's President, Joel Bloom, Ed.D., will be honored as Educator of the Year. Dr. Bloom has been with NJIT for a quarter of a century and has helped the university become one of the nation's leading public polytechnic institutions of higher learning, as well as one of its best values for students pursuing careers in STEM. Prior to joining NJIT, Dr. Bloom was assistant commissioner in the New Jersey Department of Education for the Division of General Academic Education, where he was responsible for managing many of the department's initiatives, over 300 grants and contracts, and a $24 million budget.
The 36th Edison Patent Award Ceremony & Reception will take place on the evening of November 12, 2015 at the Liberty Science Center. The Liberty Science Center is home to the nation’s largest IMAX Theater, where a short original film will pay tribute to the honored individuals and the patents of the inventors.
“The honorees at this year’s ceremony are among the most exceptional inventors and leaders I have ever encountered,” said Council President Anthony Cicatiello. “From technological breakthroughs that create a cleaner environment for our descendants to astronomical advances that help us understand the beginnings of life itself, this is a group of people whose devotion to research and development enable us all to see a little clearer when we ‘stand on the shoulders of giants.’”
For more than half a century, the Research & Development Council of New Jersey has been dedicated to cultivating an environment supportive of the advancement of research and development in New Jersey. Established in 1962, the Council was created to serve as a unified voice for the three R&D sectors —industry, academia and government — to work with the State to create an environment R&D could thrive in. The R&D Council is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization whose membership includes representatives from academia, government and industry, including several Fortune 500 companies. More information can be found at the R&D Council’s website: http://www.rdnj.org/.