A Year of Change and
As the year closes, it’s important to reflect on what has impacted our R&D community as we look to the future. The R&D 100 Awards Gala celebrated the top innovations of the past year in our annual event held in Orlando on Nov. 17—
and we welcomed an enthusiastic crowd to receive and acknowledge the game-changing
products, services and technologies that will have lasting impacts on their industries.
It’s always an interesting crowd that comes to this black-tie event as R&D Magazine
celebrated its 55th year of the R&D 100 Awards. There is genuine warmth (and wine)
flowing as attendees congratulate their colleagues for their hard work and success. And
as I noted from the stage, all of the R&D 100 community—Finalists as well as the 100
awardees—are now part of an exclusive R&D community and all of them play a significant
part in this fast-paced world of discovery.
There are always surprises—and this year was no exception. Along with the companies
and organizations that have participated in this prestigious program in the past, we were
glad to see some new faces in the crowd, too. A disruptive innovation can come from
anywhere, and that’s perhaps one of the greatest changes in the R&D community today as
smaller start-ups, R&D hubs and joint partnerships
develop new materials and technologies.
The Gala crowd saw a remarkable thing, among
many remarkable products—the littlest R&D
member ever seen in the form of a tiny baby who
accompanied mom to the stage to accept an R&D
100 Award with her family! This family business is
just one example of the range of R&D innovations
out there—and expresses the possibilities for the future. Our sincerest congratulations to
all of the 2017 R&D 100 Finalists and R&D 100 Winners. This issue contains descriptions
of the 100 top innovations and also includes the R&D 100 Special Recognition Awards as
well as the traditional Editor’s Choice Awards.
We also held the third annual R&D 100 Conference in Orlando, Nov. 16-17, and we were
pleased to see that the exchange of ideas and valuable presentations were so well received—
and also spurred great discussions. Please watch for articles coming out of this conference,
both online and in print, as well as new topics for 2018 that we feel will impact the R&D
community cross-industry. For those of you who missed it, mark your calendars for next
November for this unique R&D event and watch for announcements.
Our Gala event also included the acknowledgement our 2017 Scientist of the Year—Dr.
Cori Bargmann who now works with the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI) to promote
disease research in a new venture. We invited our 2017 Innovator of the Year, Dr. Warren
“Woody” Hoburg, to the stage and got a glimpse of the soaring new drone he and his MIT
colleagues invented. Please enjoy his profile beginning on page 6. Just like Woody, we look
forward to soaring to new heights in 2018 with our awe-inspiring R&D community!
Editorial Director, Bea Riemschneider
Editor, Laura Panjwani
Contributing Editor, Tim Studt
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innovation can come