Archive for the ‘Awards’ category

OptiPro Systems Receives 2016 Tibbetts Award from the U.S. Small Business Administration

January 26, 2017

 High-tech manufacturing company recognized for achievements in the Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) program

OptiPro Systems, LLC, a world leader in precision optics optipro_3d-no-tagline-copymanufacturing equipment, was honored with the 2016 Tibbetts Award for their achievements in innovation and job creation as a participant in the SBIR program. The company credits the program to helping develop solutions for cost-effective manufacturing of optical components with defense and commercial applications. OptiPro was one of 37 U.S. companies to receive this prestigious award during a White House ceremony on January 10th.Named in honor of the late Roland Tibbetts, the acknowledged father of the SBIR program, the esteemed Tibbetts Awards recognize those individuals, organizations, firms or projects that made a visible technological impact on the socio-economic front and exemplify the very best in SBIR achievements.

“It is truly an honor to be a recipient of the 2016 Tibbetts Award. Without the SBIR program, OptiPro would not have been able to make the R&D investments necessary to grow our company and advance our technology to where it is today,” said Mike Bechtold, President of OptiPro. “Our continued success with the SBIR programs will help us to create the best possible advanced manufacturing solutions, especially for our important U.S. based precision optics and ceramic producing companies.”  

 Since receiving their first SBIR grant, OptiPro has grown from less than 15 employees to more than 80 today. The company hosts a semi-annual SBIR review conference which highlights the technical advancements being made by OptiPro as well as other small companies participating in the SBIR program. Through the SBIR program, OptiPro has developed new machines and processes which are commercialized in sales to Prime contractors, small to medium sized optics manufacturers, and exported around the world. All profits earned since receiving their first SBIR grant have been re-invested in the company to increase technological improvement and commercialization of technologies.

>>more about OptiPro<<

UB’s Paras Prasad Named Fellow of National Academy of Inventors

January 2, 2017

University at Buffalo researcher Paras Prasad, an internationally recognized expert in optics and photonics, has been named a Fellow of the nailogoNational Academy of Inventors (NAI).

NAI Fellow is the highest professional distinction accorded by the organization to academic researchers who have demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development and the welfare of society.paras-prasad

Among other individuals, the list of NAI Fellowsincludes presidents and senior leaders of research universities and nonprofit research institutes, Nobel Laureates, and recipients of the U.S. National Medal of Technology and Innovation and U.S. National Medal of Science.

New fellows will be inducted at a ceremony on April 6 at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston, Massachusetts.

Prasad, PhD, serves as the executive director of UB’s Institute for Lasers, Photonics and Biophotonics (ILPB). He is a SUNY Distinguished Professor in the departments of Chemistry, Physics, Medicine and Electrical Engineering.

Prasad was an early pioneer in nanomedicine, which uses super-small particles, materials and devices to treat and diagnose disease.

He specializes in the use of optics, photonics and nanotechnology in this field, and has worked with colleagues to study and develop a wide range of new materials that could ultimately improve lives around the world.

These novel materials include miniature luminescent crystals that could be used in image-guided surgery; light-activated nanoparticles that could enable the development of new bioimaging technologies for disease detection; new nanoneurotechnologies for monitoring and enhancing brain functions; and magnetic and laser-activated nanoparticles that could be used for cancer diagnosis and treatment. This latter technology was licensed to UB spinoff Nanobiotix, a publicly traded company and leader in nanomedicine that has maintained close contact with Prasad while working to develop these and other new nanomedicine products.

Prasad has published more than 750 scientific papers, eight edited books and four monographs, and has been named the inventor or co-inventor on numerous patents. In keeping with his emphasis on the translational impact of his research, Prasad has been extremely active in launching startup companies and partnering with industry for co-development of technologies to create new companies. His efforts have led to 9 different companies worldwide.

He has received numerous regional, national and international recognitions for his lifetime achievements, including the Morley Medal; Jacob F. Schoellkopf Medal; Guggenheim Fellowship; Sloan Fellowship; Western New York Health Care Industries Technology/Discovery Award; and Excellence in Pursuit of Knowledge Award of the Research Foundation for SUNY. He was named a fellow of the American Physical Society, OSA (the Optical Society) and SPIE (the international society for optics and photonics).

This year, SPIE awarded him the society’s highest honor: the Gold Medal. The University at Buffalo awarded him the high honor of the UB President’s Medal in 2016 in recognition of extraordinary service to the university, and he also received UB’s inaugural Innovation Impact Award in 2015 for his contributions to the invention of the technologies licensed to Nanobiotix.

In 2005, he was named one of the “Scientific American 50,” the magazine’s list of “visionaries from the worlds of research, industry and politics whose recent accomplishments point toward a brighter technological future for everyone.” He was on the Thomson Reuters “Highly Cited Researchers” list for 2014 and 2016.

Prasad has received honorary doctorates from KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Sweden; the Aix-Marseille University in France; and the National Research Nuclear University (MEPhI) in Russia.

The National Academy of Inventors is a nonprofit member organization comprising U.S. and international universities, and governmental and nonprofit research institutes, with over 3,000 individual inventor members and fellows spanning more than 200 institutions. The academy was founded in 2010 to recognize and encourage inventors with patents issued from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office; enhance the visibility of academic technology and innovation; encourage the disclosure of intellectual property; educate and mentor innovative students; and translate the inventions of its members to benefit society.

2015 New York Photonics Awards Presented at Annual Meeting

September 25, 2015

 

ROCHESTER, NY, September 17th. 2015 – The Rochester Regional Photonics Cluster/New York Photonics (RRPC) today honored three leaders in education and business for their contributions to New York’s Optics and Photonics Industry.

RRPC Executive Director Tom Battley joined past years’ award winners to present the awards in front of more than 300 representatives from industry, government and education from across the region at the New York Photonics 2015 Annual Meeting held in the Rochester Museum and Science Center.


BickslerThe RRPC Entrepreneur Award
is given each year to an individual for demonstrating creativity, innovative spirit and drive in pursuit of the dream of creating an industry-leading company in the Optics, Photonics and Imaging Industry. The Entrepreneur Award recipient for 2015 is Bob Bicksler, CEO of JML Optical Industries in East Rochester, NY.

Bicksler has served as the President and CEO of JML Optical Industries since the 2011 change of ownership. He is responsible for developing the company’s strategy and has led numerous initiatives to position JML as a leader in the optics industry. Prior to acquiring JML with several partners, Bob served as the President and CEO of a leading provider of software products and services for the mobile device market. Bob has over 30 years of operational and financial background in manufacturing, technology, and telecommunications companies. His track record is one of continued success in growing companies and delivering superior products to a wide range of customers.

Bob is a Lecturer (part-time) of Strategy and Entrepreneurship at the University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School. He is also an active instructor at North Carolina School of Science and Math (NCSSM), part of the UNC system. NCSSM is the world’s first public, residential high school for juniors and seniors that provides a specialized curriculum in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and math. Bob holds degrees from The Pennsylvania State University (BS, Business Administration) and The University of North Texas (MS).

 

DuncanMoorePhotoThe RRPC Leadership Award is given each year to an individual for working with RRPC members and the community to promote the Rochester Region’s Optics, Photonics and Imaging Industry. The Leadership Award recipient for 2015 is Dr. Duncan Moore.

Moore is the Rudolf and Hilda Kingslake Professor of Optical Engineering, Professor of Biomedical Engineering, and Professor of Business Administration at the University of Rochester. In 2007, he was also appointed Vice Provost for Entrepreneurship at the University. In this role, he manages the Kauffman Campus Initiative ($10.6M over 5 years). From 1995 to 1997, Dr. Moore was Dean of Engineering and Applied Sciences at the University, and in 1996 he also served as President of the Optical Society of America. The U.S. Senate confirmed Dr. Moore in the fall of 1997 as Associate Director for Technology in The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). In this position, which ended December 2000, he worked with Dr. Neal Lane, President Clinton’s Science Advisor, to advise the President on U.S. technology policy.

Moore has extensive experience in the academic, research, business, and governmental arenas of science and technology. He is an expert in gradient index optics, solar cell design, computer-aided design, and the manufacture of optical systems. In 1993, Dr. Moore began a one-year appointment as Science Advisor to Senator John D. Rockefeller IV of West Virginia. He also chaired the successful Hubble Independent Optical Review Panel organized in 1990 to determine the correct prescription of the Hubble Space Telescope. He currently chairs the Product-Integrity-Team for the James Webb Space Telescope, the successor to the Hubble Space Telescope. He is also the founder and former president of Gradient Lens Corporation of Rochester, NY, a company that manufactures the Hawkeye boroscope. He holds Master’s and Ph.D. degrees in optics from the University of Rochester, and a bachelor’s degree in physics from the University of Maine. Dr. Moore was elected to the National Academy of Engineering in February 1998, and in 2006 Moore received the Gold Medal of The International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE). Dr. Moore was the recipient of the 2009 Edwin H. Land Medal presented by the Society for Imaging Science and Technology and the Optical Society of America.

Conrow2The RRPC Education Award is given each year to an individual for inspiring students to embrace Optics, Photonics, and Imaging sciences and guiding them in career development. The Education Award recipient for 2015 is East High School Science Teacher Paul Conrow.

Conrow initiated and developed the East High School Optics Manufacturing Lab (Rochester, NY) that includes a complete shop for manufacturing precision optics.  He was the initiator, with New York Photonics Executive Director and a team of volunteers, of the Optics Summer Sizzler, a summer immersion program for teaching students and teachers about optics and photonics.

Conrow helped run a summer physics research program for area high school students, under the direction of Professor Kevin McFarland at the University of Rochester. This paid experience for students required them to refurbish, test, and experiment with several 3’ x 10’ solid scintillating panels.  He has worked with students to perform cosmic ray experiments with scintillating panels on the university campus. The final destination for the panels is FermiLab in Batavia, Illinois as part of a multi-year neutrino experiment that began in 2009.

Happy Birthday Marty Dvorin, Founding Professor of the Monroe Community College Optics Program!

January 31, 2015

Martin Dvorin is Professor emeritus of the Optical Systems Technology Program at a Community College.  He began teaching optics at Monroe Community College, on Alexander Street, in Rochester, NY in 1966.

We reprint here a recollection written for us by Marty in 2009, and edited just two months ago.

Happy Birthday Marty!

In the early 1960’s, the Optical Society of America, in a research effort “Optics – an Action Program”, under the direction of its president, Van Zandt Williams, determined that, from retiring and deaths, the United States was losing its optical technicians. Independently, Corwin Brumley, Vice President for R&D at Bausch and Lomb, I, and others around the coffee pot, came to the same conclusion. Optics was changing. We did not have the technicians with the skills needed for present and future projects. All this pointed to an impending national crisis.

One afternoon, in the summer of 1966, while I was working away in my ‘skunk works’ office at Bausch and Lomb, there was a knock on the partition opening that served as a door.

“Martin Dvorin?”  “ The same.  And you are?”  “Frank Milligan, assistant to the Vice President of Faculty at Monroe Community College. May I come in?”

How he was directed to me, I’ll never know, but Dr. Milligan came to ask me to take over the Optical Technology Program at M.C.C. At the time I was Technical Director of a large R&D contract which I could not leave until it was delivered, so we settled for my teaching nights, adjunct, at the ‘campus’, an abandoned high school in downtown Rochester, on Alexander Street.

That first evening, in September 1966, I faced 13 younger Marty Dvorins, when, in 1951, I started my own night school program which concluded a few months previous in the spring of 1966. Among the students present were (the late) Robert Novak and the late Harvey Pollicove. We had a cozy lecture hall, and high school Cenco lab equipment and maybe some from drug stores. We used photographic equipment from the Police Science Department. My shared desk sat in a “bull pen” office, which housed faculty from many departments. (also the late) Dr. Howard Smith of Eastman Kodak was the other part time faculty member.

In the spring of 1968, the B&L project delivered, I could take on full time duties at the College. Since my goal was to teach what would be useful to students in their work, I wanted lots of input from local companies which would hire them, so I visited several in the area and interviewed managers, to fill in a survey that included: equipment the graduates would use, skills they would need, and, most secret, how many would be hired in one, two and five years. The agreement was: information from any one company would be absolutely confidential, but the totals from all companies would be public knowledge. I took the results, and added in a little “technology forecasting” imagining what future developments there might be. All this went into the design of courses and recruiting plans. The advisory committee was pleased with what I presented. Also, I would actively recruit minorities, which in 1968 included women.

The first course in the new campus, a Survey of Optics, for the general public, was presented in the summer of 1968, The first (of my) full-time optics students entered in the fall of 1968, to unfinished facilities. “Blackboards” were corrugated cartons. One day, Dr. James Walsh (yes, deceased), V.P. Faculty, entered and stood quietly in the back of the room. I always invited any member of the faculty to sit in. I was lecturing by the light of my Coleman lantern. Jim had heard of this and wanted to observe it. I was a one-man department, and did a lot of improvisation and construction. Money was tight. Local companies contributed equipment and supplies, and I brought in my own darkroom stuff. Steve Avery (my first student of color) was the first student aide. When he saw me clamber up onto a darkroom counter: “Marty you’re pretty agile for an old guy”. I was forty-five years old- a real old guy!

One morning, Ouida Norris, Chair of Biomedical Engineering Technology, stormed into my sixth floor corner office and showed me a newspaper article saying that, because of financial conditions, the College was investigating canceling her and my programs. Now there were two storming people, barging into the office of Leroy Goode, the College President (yes, died). “Don’t worry, nothing is happening, yet’. Happily. nothing did.

Being a one man department was exhausting me, so I went to the Faculty office, and requested another person. Charles Ball, then in the Audiovisual Department, had expressed interest. But the assistant was adamant. I had in my pocket prepared a letter of resignation, which, until I retired, I always kept in my desk in the event I needed it. (I never did). I flashed it. The guy shrank back, like a vampire does from garlic. Then I went back to my office and called Theron Carter at Kodak.  “Ted, this is Marty. H-E-L-P!”, and hung up the telephone. Somehow, Charlie was transferred to the Optical Technology Department. Rochester industry has always been supportive of the Program. And still is, now in 2012.

Budget money did come in, and we bought better lab equipment from Ealing (I saw a lens bench I bought, in one of your pictures) and others. I called the late Alex Martens, a V.P. at B&L, my alma mater. “Alex, I need a spectrometer”. “Marty, I can’t give you a new one. They are expensive. But I’ll lend you a used one.” “When?” “Oh, I can use one in the next few days.”  Alex, bless him, had one in a raincoat pocket when he came into our lab. Kodak gave us the first lens polishers. 500 plastic containers came from a former employer in Kearney, New Jersey.

Students were coming in; graduates were getting hired. Bob Novak, A.A.S. graduate, having just received his B.S.degree from Arizona University, visited the department. The details are hazy, but Bob joined the department the next semester. Now we were three. And  Howie Smith, of course.

1971 was a watershed year. To widen the market for our graduates, during summers, my late wife Harriette and I motored to New England. We would camp in our 1969 Dodge Sportsman van at Salisbury Beach Park, Mass., and visit companies around Route 128. I signed many confidentiality agreements, saw a lot of ‘company secrets’. Recruiters came from Lawrence Livermore Labs in California, and hired many of our graduates. With four year engineering grads having trouble finding jobs, our story was in the newspapers and on local television. When Dennis Gabor won the Nobel Prize for Holography, Howie and I were invited to explain holography on a morning T.V. program.

The Rochester Section of the O.S.A. held meetings and pre-meeting dinners at the M.C.C. campus, and I was invited to be President of the Rochester O.S.A for the year 1972-1973. In the summer of 1973, Harriette and I drove the van around the U.S.A. and visited Colleges and companies to further expand coverage. Around the Los Angeles area, the S.P.I.E. housed us and arranged for visits to important installations. The Optics Survey went national.

We applied for a federal grant, and were awarded enough money to add, among other things, a Bridgeport milling machine and a Strasbaugh polisher. We hired other people from industry as adjuncts. With an Education Committee, we set up a pioneering transfer program so that graduates from M.C.C. could continue at the Rochester Institute of Technology or the University of Rochester, working towards a B.S.,  M.S., or a PhD degree.

Feature articles describing the optics program were published in Applied Optics and several other international journals. The Optical Engineering Technology program at Monroe had come of age. If not for that visit, I just might have gone over and applied for the job that was offered to me that day in 1966

……Martin Dvorin, Novato, California, October, 2009, rev 10/2014

RRPC announces annual awards recipients

September 9, 2014

The Rochester Regional Photonics Cluster/New York Photonics (RRPC) has honored three leaders in education and business for their contributions to New York’s Optics and Photonics Industry.

RRPC Executive Director Tom Battley presented the awards in front of more than 200 representatives of industry, government and education from across the region at the RRPC’s 2014 Annual Meeting on Sept. 4 at the Rochester Museum and Science Center.

Michael Pavia

Michael Pavia

The RRPC Entrepreneur Award recipient for 2014 is Sydor Instruments Co-Founder and President Michael Pavia, who was recognized for demonstrating creativity, innovative spirit and drive in pursuit of the dream of creating an industry-leading company in the optics, photonics and imaging industry. Sydor Instruments provides custom diagnostics and ultrafast imaging systems, specializing in streak cameras, smart cameras and electro-optic detection techniques. Pavia’s company recently acquired the UK-based ballistics testing system supplier Sabre Ballistics. The deal doubles the size of Sydor’s international customer base, with a projected 50 percent increase in revenues. Pavia is an Adjunct Professor in Entrepreneurship at the University of Rochester’s Simon Graduate School of Business.

Jay Eastman

Jay Eastman

The RRPC Leadership Award recipient for 2014 is Dr. Jay Eastman, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of  Optel, Inc. Eastman was recognized for his work with fellow members of the RRPC and the community to advance the region’s optics, photonics and imaging industry. His company designs and manufactures medical products and provides medical device regulatory compliance assistance for third party customers. Previously, as CEO of Lucid, Inc., he directed the development, manufacture and sale of non-invasive medical imaging devices for the diagnosis of skin cancers and other dermatological disease. Prior to Lucid, Eastman founded Optel Systems, Inc., the first company to develop, manufacture and sell laser diode based bar code scanners. The company was acquired by PSC Inc. in 1986.

 

Stephen Jacobs

Stephen Jacobs     

   The RRPC Education Award recipient for 2014 is Dr. Stephen Jacobs, Professor of Optics and Chemical Engineering at the University of Rochester, and Senior Scientist at U of R’s Laboratory for Laser Energetics (LLE). He was recognized for inspiring students to embrace optics, photonics and imaging sciences and guiding them in career development.  Jacobs has spent his entire career working in the LLE, where he became a Senior Scientist in 1982. He developed the innovative Optics Suitcase educational initiative, designed to introduce middle school age students to the exciting range of concepts within the study of light. To date, 701 suitcases have been assembled and distributed to educators worldwide. Each case includes a teaching guide and materials for demonstrations and experiments that teach optics in a fun, interactive atmosphere.

A special presentation was made to Congresswoman Louise Slaughter (D-NY 25th Dist.) in honor of her late husband, Robert Slaughter. The RRPC has donated $2,500 in Mr. Slaughter’s name to the Dr. Walter Cooper Academy Fund of the Rochester Education Foundation. The funds will be used to purchase books for students at the City of Rochester school. Mr. Slaughter, who passed away earlier this year, was remembered as an avid reader who valued education.

 

JML Optical CFO DiSalvo is selected as finalist for Financial Executive of the Year

June 9, 2014

Len DiSalvo’s contributions to JML Optical Industries as the company’s CFO,  and to the Rochester community as a whole,  have placed him as a finalist for the Financial Executive of the Year award, sponsored by the Rochester Business Journal and Financial Executives International.

JML Optical CFO DiSalvo named Financial Executive of the Year finalist

JML Optical Industries CFO Len DiSalvo is Financial Executive of the Year finalist

In addition to finance and accounting, DiSalvo is responsible for human resources and information technology functions at JML Optical, which is a leading designer and manufacturer of custom precision optical components, assemblies and systems for use in the defense, medical diagnostic, life sciences, semiconductor, metrology and biometrics industries.

Prior to joining JML, DiSalvo  held the positions of CFO and Vice President for Finance for Harbinger Group Inc., formerly Zapata Corp., managing acquisition and divestiture activities and serving on the board of directors of the company’s publicly traded majority-owned subsidiaries. There, he directed the creation and eventual spin-off of an internet subsidiary. DiSalvo has also held financial positions at Constellation Brands and Bausch + Lomb, Inc.

“Len has been at the heart of JML’s successful transition from a sole proprietorship to a growth company with private equity and broader management ownership,” said JML CEO and President Bob Bicksler.  “Also under Len’s leadership and direct involvement, our customers will soon benefit from a new, state-of-the-art ERP system that is now being implemented.”

DiSalvo contributes to the wider Rochester community by serving as a board member of the Rochester Technology & Manufacturing Council, and as a member of the Nazareth College financial advisory council.

 

 

Sydor Instruments wins DOE SBIR grant

June 5, 2014

Acquisition of data in complex x-ray studies could improve 100-fold over existing technology with the help of an $833,000 federal grant awarded this week to Sydor Instruments.

sydorlogoIIThe company will use the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant, awarded through the U.S. Department of Energy, to complete the technology transfer of a novel microstrip detector,  in collaboration with Brookhaven National Laboratory. The detector is designed to be highly effective at acquiring count rates, energy resolution and spatial resolution data. Commercialization of the detector will allow researchers to advance discovery in a number of areas, among them nanoscale material science, structure-based drug design and environmental remediation of contamination sites.

“We are very pleased with being awarded this SBIR Phase IIB grant and would like to thank Brookhaven National Lab for its partnership and collaboration during this process,” said Sydor Instruments President Michael Pavia.  “This grant from the Department of Energy reinforces the importance of completing the technology transfer of this microstrip detector and positioning it for immediate commercial deployment.  By acquiring data at many points, the quality and quantity of data will be improved 100-fold from the current state-of-the-art.”

The SBIR program is a highly competitive program that encourages domestic small businesses to engage in federal research/research and development  that has the potential for commercialization. Through a competitive awards-based program, SBIR enables small businesses to explore their technological potential and provides the incentive to profit from its commercialization. According to the Small Business Administration, 11 federal agencies currently participate in the program, which is open to businesses with fewer than 500 employees.

For more information on the SBIR program, go to http://www.sbir.gov/about/about-sbir

Visit Sydor Instruments at http://www.sydorinstruments.com