The complete listing of 2009 Tekne Awards categories and recipients includes:
ADVANCED MANUFACTURING AWARD
The Advanced Manufacturing Award is presented to companies that have excelled in the production of advanced materials and chemicals, machinery and equipment, electronics and components, measuring instruments, photonics, optics and lasers, computer and peripheral equipment.
Advanced Manufacturing recipient is Minnesota Thermal Science LLC. The Plymouth, Minn.-based company has developed the Credo Cube, designed to be the most scalable thermal container on the market. It offers pharmaceutical and biologics industries an alternative to inefficient and expensive shipping methods. The 100 percent reusable cube ensures safe transport of temperature-sensitive medical and bio-tech products while maintaining thermal protection for up to seven days, the longest-duration thermal protection in the industry.
The Cleantech Award recognizes businesses that manufacture environmentally sound products or solutions that reduce costs, inputs, energy consumption, waste or pollution.
Cleantech Award recipient is Minneapolis-based Vast Enterprises LLC. It is using new technology to transform recycled materials into an innovative composite material used for green building. Its patented technology creates environmentally friendly material that is 100 percent recyclable, and over the last year has kept 1.2 million pounds of rubber out of landfills.
The Green Award honors businesses that practice environmental awareness/responsibility and incorporate sustainability principles into their overall business model.
Green Award recipient is Ecolab Inc. The company develops products to help companies lower their use of water and energy while reducing the amount of chemical waste released into the environment. Ecolab practices sustainable, eco-friendly behavior, as well. In 2008, it significantly reduced energy and water usage in its plants worldwide. In 2009, it partnered with the EPA Climate Leaders program, setting a goal to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by 20 percent per dollar of sales from 2006 to 2012.
INNOVATION IN TEACHING (K-12) AWARD
The Innovation in Teaching Award recognizes innovative classroom use of technology in K-12 Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education, expanding opportunities for students to be successful in technology-related careers.
Innovation in Teaching Award recipient is Laurie Toll of Weaver Lake Elementary School in Maple Grove, Minn. Five years ago, Toll helped launch a K-6 Science, Math and Technology magnet program. Today, students are able to collaborate with experts and other classrooms around the world through the use of video conferencing. Toll also works with students to help publish their work as podcasts, video and blogs.
INNOVATIVE COLLABORATION OF THE YEAR AWARD
The Innovative Collaboration of the Year Award honors a business/community/higher-ed/K-12 collaboration or partnership that has demonstrated leadership, dedication and excellence in delivering an innovation to the Minnesota technology economy and/or community in general.
Innovative Collaboration of the Year Award recipient is Fabcon Inc and VAST Enterprises LLC. Minneapolis-based VAST Enterprises LLC and Savage, Minn.-based Fabcon Inc. partnered to launch the first precast wall panel with a composite masonry exterior. The new composite brick introduced by VAST and used in Fabcon’s wall panels is made of 95 percent recycled tires and plastic. Over the next five years, these two companies will work together to consume 350 million pounds of recycled material.
IT-SOFTWARE & HARDWARE, COMMUNICATIONS AND INFRASTRUCTURE AWARD
This award is presented to companies that have shown great success on software and hardware (Web-based software, Web 2.0, etc.), networking, communications and wireless equipment and products.
Small and growing company recipient is SearchAmerica. Based in Maple Grove, SearchAmerica created Charity Advisor and Medicaid Advisor to enable users to identify all uninsured patients who qualify for hospital charity programs or other government initiatives, and enroll them immediately. These solutions also prevent fraud or identity theft. Since 2001, Charity Advisor and Medicaid Advisor have helped more than five million low-income patients become enrolled in financial assistance programs.
Established company recipient is CareerOneStop.org. Under the guidance of program director Mike Ellsworth, the state of Minnesota has redeveloped CareerOneStop.org, integrating a new Web content management system, a search engine, and a new information architecture and taxonomy. The U.S. Department of Labor-sponsored Web site offers a greater breadth of data than any other public or private site and serves more than 24 million unique visitors each year.
MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY AWARD
The Medical Technology Awards acknowledge companies excelling in production of devices, diagnostics and equipment relating to the medical field.
Small and growing company recipient is Plymouth-based Nonin Medical Inc. The company is committed to extending healthcare solutions into the home, giving individuals more freedom and reducing medical costs. The company’s Onyx II, Model 9560 fingertip pulse oximeter enables clinicians to remotely monitor patients’ pulses and oxygen saturation levels. It also allows patients to monitor their own health through online patient health records and home telemedicine systems.
Established company recipient is Eden Prairie-based Starkey Laboratories Inc. The country’s largest hearing aid company offers a revolutionary new product, the S Series hearing aid. It offers two innovative new features, T2 and Sweep Technology. T2 allows patients to control their hearing aids using any cell or touch-tone phone. Sweep Technology allows patients to adjust their hearing aids with a touch of the finger.
TECHNOLOGY EXECUTIVE OF THE YEAR AWARD
The Technology Executive of the Year Award honors individual members of executive teams who are responsible for the advancement of technology and technology strategy within a company or organization.
Small and growing company recipient is Phil Isaacson, chief technology officer and owner of Plymouth-based Nonin Medical Inc. Nonin began in Isaacson’s basement where the four founders started testing and prototyping their first pulse oximeter. Twenty-four years later, Isaacson’s vision continues to drive the company as Nonin works to design for the future and the ever changing healthcare industry.
Established company recipient is Joel Ronning, chief executive officer of Eden Prairie, Minn.-based Digital River Inc. Founded in 1994, Digital River Inc. is the world’s leading e commerce solutions provider and has eight global data centers and clients such as Adobe Systems Inc., Microsoft Corporation, Electronic Arts Inc. and Kodak. Ronning has worked diligently for the last 15 years to grow a successful Minnesota business, which employs approximately 1,300 professionals, half of whom live in Minnesota.
TECHNOLOGY SERVICES AWARD
The Technology Services Award honors companies that succeed in innovative development and/or delivery of technology services, including consulting services, service providers and software as a service.
Small and growing company recipient is Eden Prairie-based Access Genetics LLC. Its Web-based software, laboratory materials and networked professional services have come together in its molecular information system, Access TeleGene. A telepathology Web portal, TeleGene provides expert, real-time interpretations of complex test results delivered by a network of physicians, medical technologists and genetic counselors. It also improves materials management through a Web store and real-time inventory tracking.
Established company recipient is XATA Corporation of Eden Prairie. Its product, XATANET, allows customers to analyze their fleet operations in order to improve procedures and cut costs while adhering to U.S. Department of Transportation regulations. In addition to the technology offered, XATA Corporation provides a variety of professional services, such as product training and custom application development.
TECHNOLOGY USER AWARD
The Technology User Award recipient has shown innovative application of products or services resulting in dramatic business improvement or market advantage.
Technology User Award recipient is Honeywell. The Golden Valley, Minn.-based company created a new wireless technology suite designed specifically for heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) that eliminates the need to run wires for many applications. RedLINK gives homeowners greater control over comfort and energy use from anywhere in their home. The product has also cut installation time, enabling contractors to handle more jobs.