The U.S. Small Business Administration is seeking nominations for awards honoring the critical economic role small businesses play in federally funded research and development through SBA’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) programs. Two awards will be given, the “Hall of Fame” award, recognizing companies that have an extended period of extraordinary success of research, innovation and product commercialization, and the “Tibbetts Award” with two categories, one for companies that have participated in the SBIR/STTR programs, and another for individuals who advocate on behalf of the programs. Nominations for these awards will close at 5 p.m. EST on January 31, 2013. Awards will be presented in Washington, D.C., in May 2013. To submit a nomination, please visit Tibbetts Awards, companies and individuals, and Hall of Fame Awards.
The Tibbetts Awards are named after Roland Tibbetts, who was instrumental in developing SBIR, a highly competitive program to ensure small businesses get a chance to compete for federal research and development funding, along with the opportunities it provides to profit from commercialization of the technologies they develop. The SBIR and STTR programs currently account for more than $2.5 billion per year in federal R&D funds. They are coordinated by the SBA in cooperation with 11 other federal agencies with large external research and development budgets. The awards are presented to companies and individuals that are beacons of promise and models of excellence in high technology.
Typical of past Tibbetts Award winners are:
- an Arizona bio strategies company whose genetic engineering accomplishments help combat Gaucher’s disease, a rare genetic disease usually fatal in childhood, and
- a three-time award winner, from California, that developed a state of the art manufacturing facility for the production of aerospace quality composite products for missile defense and commercial space.
Selections for Tibbetts Awards are based on several factors, including the economic impact of the technological innovation, overall business achievement and demonstration of effective collaborations.
Hall of Fame winners have typically included Fortune 500 and 1000 companies like Qualcomm and Genzyme. Genzyme, a 2012 Hall of Fame award winner, evolved from a tiny start-up with just a handful of employees to one of the world’s leading biotech companies. This Massachusetts-based company focuses on developing innovative products and services for major unmet medical needs such as rare genetic disorders, organ transplant, osteoarthritis and renal disease.