Recipients of the Governor’s Medal for Science and Technology were announced this week. They include seven individuals and one company.
The Governor’s Office of Economic Development and the Utah Science Technology and Research, or USTAR, initiative collaborate on the yearly awards. Dr. Ivy Estabrook is the executive director of USTAR. She says the recipients are nominated by their peers from around the state.
“The folks that were awarded this year came from an incredibility impressive pool,” says Dr. Estabrook. “I mean it really is amazing the talent in science and technology and education that the state of Utah has.”
Four of the honorees are from the University of Utah. Dr. Phillis Coley and Dr. Erik Jorgensen are in the U’s biology department. Also receiving the medal are Dr. Ronald Weiss, President and COO of ARUP Laboratories and Troy D’Ambrosio, executive director of the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute at the David Eccles School of Business. D’Ambrosio says he’s fortunate to be at an institution that makes room for new ways of learning.
“To come and create a unique experience for students, and really taking a concept of ‘can we bring science and engineering students, mix them with business students,” says D’Ambrosio, “tie them with university faculty inventors, and use that experience as a great laboratory for learning?’”
The list of recipients also includes Dr. Christine Celestino from Juan Diego Catholic High School, Dr. Helen Hu, professor of computer science at Westminster College, Niel Holt, director of Utah State University’s Space Dynamics Laboratory, and Orem-based US Synthetic, the largest producer of diamond cutters in the world. The Governor’s Medal has been award annually since 1987.