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RIT honors contributions of inventors, innovators

Thomas Gennett, chemistry professor and co-director of RIT’s Nanopower Research Labs in the College of Science, received the RIT Creator’s Award for 2002.

Professor Thomas Gennett and NSF Deputy Director Joseph Bordogna at RIT's inventors dinner

Gennett was honored for his groundbreaking work with carbon nanotubes. “We’re very excited about where this will take technology applications in the near future,” he notes, citing uses that will allow marked fuel savings in things ranging from from cars to space vehicles.

The Creator’s Award recognizes outstanding creative works by an individual or group in the RIT community. The award-winning work, required to be part of RIT’s portfolio of intellectual property, must show inventiveness, the potential to be revolutionary, an impact on students, community and society, and substantial long-term benefits. RIT’s Intellectual Property Policy committee chooses
the winner.

RIT also announced six winners of the Intellectual Property Productivity Award at a dinner in April. They are Gennett, Noboru Ohta, Michael Potter, Mitchell Rosen, Bruce Smith and Ryan Raffaelle. Additionally, Smith, associate dean of the Kate Gleason College of Engineering and microelectronics professor, received a plaque for a recently issued patent on microlithography processes. Smith won the first Creator’s Award in 1999.

The Inventors’ Dinner honors RIT students and faculty/staff members who have disclosed a creative work that RIT has begun the process of protecting through trademark, patent or copyright application.

This year’s event featured keynote addresses by Congressman Sherwood Boehlert (R-N.Y.), chair of the House Science Committee, and Joseph Bordogna, deputy director and chief operating officer of the National Science Foundation.