NAI-AU Seventh Annual Luncheon
Thursday, September 21, 2017

Posted in Events on September 15, 2017 at 9:50 pm

The Auburn University Chapter of the National Academy of Inventors cordially invites you to its Seventh Annual Luncheon.

Thursday, September 21st,  11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Ballroom ABC – Auburn Marriott Opelika Hotel and Conference Center at Grand National
3700 Robert Trent Jones Trail, Opelika, AL (Google Maps link)

Keynote Speaker:
Will Wright
Entrepreneur in Residence
Economic Development Partnership for Alabama (EDPA)

Title: “Mapping Entrepreneurship in Alabama”

Biographical Information: Will Wright received his bachelor of science degree in Biology from Harvard University in 2003 (magna cum laude), and he later earned his MBA from the Haas School of Business at the University of California at Berkeley in 2009. He graduated with honors at both institutions and was the recipient of the Haas Public Service and Leadership Award at UC Berkeley. Will has served as a Consultant, Director of Business Development, Founder, and CEO at several healthcare related companies. He founded Wright Strategies, LLC, an independent consulting company out of Birmingham, AL, and he is currently serving as the Entrepreneur in Residence at the Economic Development Partnership for Alabama (EDPA).

NAI-AU Sixth Annual Luncheon
Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Posted in Events on October 10, 2016 at 8:59 pm

The Auburn University Chapter of the National Academy of Inventors cordially invites you to its Sixth Annual Luncheon.

Wednesday, October 12th,  11:30 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Ballroom A – The Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center

Keynote Speaker:
S. Davis Worley, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus
Fellow, National Academy of Inventors
Chemistry and Biochemistry
Auburn University

Title: “A Successful Auburn Commercialization Story”

Biographical Information: Dr. S. Davis (Dave) Worley, Professor Emeritus at Auburn University, received a Ph.D. in chemistry at the University of Texas in 1969. He worked at the NASA Manned Spacecraft Center, Cleveland State University, and the Office of Naval Research before joining the faculty at Auburn in 1974. He has received numerous awards, including the 2004 Charles Stone Award from the ACS as the Outstanding Chemist in the Southeast, the 2006 Auburn University Innovative Faculty Research Award, and the university award for Excellence in Innovation in 2010. In 2014, he was inducted as a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors, a prestigious honor given to only two other faculty members at Auburn University. Dr. Worley has authored or co-authored over 250 journal articles, holds 35 patents, and has given numerous technical presentations around the world.

Dr. Worley and his research team have developed biocidal polymers that are capable of purifying water within seconds in a simple flow-through filter system. As the culmination of years of innovation in the Worley laboratory in N-halamine chemistry, HaloSource Inc. ( can now offer point-of-use water purification units made using inexpensive yet highly efficient, bead-based filters. The filters have been packaged into sports bottles, water canisters, pool-care pods, and even mounted into counter-top sinks. This portable, point-of-use technology is already being sold and used by millions in India, China, and Brazil in areas where access to clean drinking water had previously been limited.

NAI-AU Fifth Annual Luncheon
Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Posted in Events on April 16, 2015 at 5:32 pm

The Auburn University Chapter of the National Academy of Inventors cordially invites you to its Fifth Annual Luncheon.

Wednesday, April 22nd,  11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Terrance Room – The Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center

Keynote Speaker:
Ruel A. Overfelt, Ph.D.
Professor and Executive Director
National Air Transportation Center of Excellence RITE/ACER
Auburn University

Title: “Expanding Opportunities in Additive Manufacturing”

Biographical Information: Dr. Ruel A. (Tony) Overfelt, the William and Elizabeth Reed Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Auburn University, received a Ph. D. in Materials Science and Engineering from Vanderbilt University in 1984. He worked for General Electric Corporation in the 1980s on a variety of engineering assignments with responsibilities for manufacturing and materials development. During his time at GE, Dr. Overfelt completed the company’s prestigious “A”, “B”, and “C” Advanced Courses in Engineering as well as the Edison Engineering Leadership Program. Since coming to Auburn University in 1991, he has worked to develop improved metals-based manufacturing technologies. Dr. Overfelt has authored or co-authored over 180 papers in archival journals and conference proceedings, holds 2 patents, and has made numerous technical presentations.

NAI-AU Third Annual Luncheon
April 5, 2013

Posted in Events on March 19, 2013 at 9:31 pm

The Auburn University Chapter of the National Academy of Inventors cordially invites you to its Third Annual Luncheon

April 5th, 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.
Ballroom B Right – The Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center

Keynote Speaker: Keith McGreggor, Director of the Georgia Tech VentureLab
“Startup Engineering… how the trillion dollar experiment in startupsover the last decade has radically transformed how we build startups forever”

Keith McGreggor is the director of VentureLab, Georgia Tech’s comprehensive center for technology commercialization, open to all faculty, research staff, and students who want to form startup companies based upon their research. VentureLab has launched more than 150 companies, which have raised almost $700M in angel and VC funding.

He is the lead instructor for the NSF Innovation Corps (I-Corps) program for Georgia Tech, a founding node in the I-Corps network. Keith is also a member of the NSF I-Corps curriculum committee, and gives frequent invited talks on I-Corps and the foundations of the lean startup philosophy.

Keith has been an entrepreneur for the last three decades. His first company, Artificial Intelligence Atlanta, was the first AI company in the southeast, which led to a gig in robotics for Lockheed.

He has been a founder or co-founder of six software companies. Keith wrote and shipped the first 3D program (1984/5) and first color paint program (1987) for the Macintosh. He developed the color architecture for the Macintosh, wrote substantial portions of the graphics system, and managed the graphics group at Apple Computer in Cupertino. A stint as co-founder of an internet company in the mid 1990s led to Keith becoming a director of engineering at Yahoo in 1999.

Keith holds a Bachelor and Master’s degree in computer science from Georgia Tech. He’s currently writing his dissertation on fractal visual analogies, in support of his PhD in computer science from Georgia Tech.

November 13 Lecture: Survival Techniques and Technologies of a University Start-up Company

Posted in Events on November 13, 2012 at 1:20 pm

NOVEMBER 13, 2012; 2:00 – 4:00 PM
IN FOY 258

Survival Techniques and Technologies of a University Start-up Company
Increasing numbers of colleges, universities and institutes of technology today place value on the efforts of their faculty to create new technologies that have societal and market value. No one better understands what the technologies are and how to apply them than their own inventors. To best apply that knowledge and the principles of finding the right intended users, institutions of higher learning are beginning to encourage and reward faculty who start their own companies with the university intellectual property that the faculty themselves have created. Dr. Earl Wagener of Tetramer Technologies will cover the topic of survival techniques and technologies of just such a university faculty start-up company. Topics will include creating an atmosphere of amnesty, the doing-knowledge-judgment hierarchy, how to select academic projects for commercialization, raising money without venture capital, managing conflicts of interest, and finding real live customers.

Questions? Contact: or

Dr. Earl H. Wagener earned his Ph. D. (1967) degree in physical organic chemistry from Clemson University. Over the past 40 years, he has held leadership positions in eleven research and development groups at Dow Chemical, Stepan, and Tetramer in both the U.S. and Europe. These groups have developed innovative products having cumulative sales of over $3 billion dollars, including: the first commercially feasible cathodic electrodeposition polymers, membranes for reverse osmosis, gas separation, fuel cells, and dialysis, urethane and epoxy polymers for the aerospace, electronic, automotive, and coatings industries, specialty latexes for coating, construction, medical, and agricultural industries, and specialty chemicals such as ion exchange resins, antibacterials, methocel, mining chemicals and surfactants for use in home care, personal care, agricultural, and food products.

Dr. Wagener joined Tetramer Technologies L.L.C., in 2001 as CEO. He has been the principal investigator for 7 Phase I, 4 Phase II, 2 Phase IIB and 1 Phase IIR NSF SBIR Awards. He is an NSF Senior Discovery Fellow and was elected to the Thomas Green Clemson Academy of Engineers and Scientists in 2002.

Dr. Richard Voyles Lecture: Securing NSF grants under the new I‐Corps Program

Posted in Events on July 3, 2012 at 6:09 pm

National Academy of Inventors‐AU Chapter* Sponsors a lecture by Dr. Richard Voyles, NSF I‐Corps Program Director

July 12, 2012; 11 – 12:00 AM lecture in Ross 136, open to all

10:00 Meeting with VIPs
11:00 Lecture in Ross 136, open to the whole university.
12:00 Lunch meeting with NAI-AU committee in Ross 202
1:00 Informal discussion with AU faculty interested in iCorp program, Ross 202

Securing NSF grants under the new I‐Corps Program

National Science Foundation is developing a new program to reinvigorate entrepreneurship tied to federally-sponsored research. Researchers with NSF-sponsored research ideas that they believe are nearing commercial potential can apply for funding to help determine the business potential of ground- breaking ideas. To qualify for funding and make a go/no-go decision on commercialization potential, PIs must do two things: assemble an entrepreneurial team and commit the team to enroll in an NSF- supported entrepreneurship course tailored for engineers and scientists. NSF has adopted an emerg- ing new curriculum that formulates business creation that is friendly to engineers and scientists. In an economic climate that presents increasing challenges due to the accelerating pace of technological change, and dwindling natural resources, greater speed and efficiency in translating academic advanc- es into meaningful impact on society is relevant to all. To read more about the I-Corps-funded projects, go to: america-does-best/

In addition to I-Corps, Dr. Voyles is the lead Program Director for robotics at NSF. He will briefly discuss the National Robotics Initiative and its goals for infrastructure development. Questions? Contact:

Dr. Richard Voyles: Dr. Voyles is NSF Program Director in the newly formed I‐Corps Program that grants up to $50,000 per project. Dr. Voyles received the B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University, M.S. from the De‐ partment of Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University in 1989, and Ph.D. in Robotics from the School of Com‐puter Science at Carnegie Mellon University in 1997. In addition to I‐Corps, he is a Program Director in the National Robotics Initiative, and Robust Intelligence. His research interests are in the areas of cyber physical systems, robotics and artificial intelligence; development of small, resource‐constrained robots and robot teams for urban search and rescue and surveillance; sensors and sensor calibration, particularly haptic and force sensors, real‐time control, and robotic manipulation. Dr. Voyles’ industrial experience includes Dart Controls, IBM Corp., Integrated Systems, Inc., and Avanti Optics. He has also served on the boards of various start‐ups and non‐profit groups, includ‐ ing The Works, a hands‐on, minds‐on engineering discovery center.

Auburn University Chapter of the National Academy of Inventors 2nd Annual Luncheon

Posted in Events on February 24, 2012 at 10:13 pm

The 2nd annual luncheon of the Auburn University Chapter of the National Academy of Inventors will take place at 11:45 am on Friday, March 9, 2012 in the Terrace Room at the Hotel and Dixon Conference Center in Auburn, Alabama.

11:45 Buffet Lunch
12:00 Welcome & Opening Remarks – Ram Gupta
12:10 “Importance of Research Commercialization” – John M. Mason
12:20 Presentation of Excellence in Innovation Award – John D. Weete
11:45 Introduction of Speaker – Bernhard Kaltenboeck
11:45 Speaker