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Twenty Five Global Innovators Honored as Tech Museum Awards Laureates

Press Release Date 
Wednesday, September 8, 2004
The Tech Museum of Innovation today announced the 25 laureates for the 2004 Tech Museum Awards, presented by Applied Materials, Inc. At a black tie awards gala on November 10, Silicon Valley leaders and representatives from program partners the United Nations Development Programme, The World Bank Institute, and Santa Clara University, will honor all 25 for their pioneering work in developing technology for the benefit of humanity. Five of these laureates will share a $250,000 cash prize.

The Tech Awards are designed to honor individuals and for-profit, public and not-for-profit organizations from around the world who are applying technology to profoundly improve the human condition in the areas of environment, economic development, education, equality and health.

This year, an esteemed panel of judges considered more than 580 nominations, representing 80 countries. The 25 laureates represent a global community from locations including Australia, Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, India, Guatemala, Nepal, Nigeria, Singapore, the United States, and Uruguay. Work done by the laureates can be seen in virtually all of the world's continents.

"The Tech Museum Awards, which were inspired by United Nations development goals set at the millennium, uniquely recognize those who use technology to benefit mankind," said The Tech's President and CEO Peter Giles. "By celebrating this spirit of innovation, The Tech seeks to inspire a new generation of socially conscious leaders who will leverage technology to address the myriad of challenges we face as a global community."

In Silicon Valley technology is everywhere, but it's only gradually impacting the most remote corners of the world. The Tech Museum Awards recognize the need to bridge existing technology in emerging countries with emerging technologies in developed countries. Sponsors, partners, judges, finalists and all applicants support the use of technology to meet humanitarian needs.

"The Tech Museum Awards honor leaders who have pioneered breakthrough technologies demonstrating innovation and advancement worldwide," stated Jim Morgan, Chairman of presenting sponsor Applied Materials. "By harnessing technology, they have truly benefited society with their life-altering work around the globe."

For more information on the awards and this year's laureates, visit

The 2004 Tech Museum Awards Laureates:

Intel Environment Award -- Developing or using technologies that conserve and protect our planet's ecosystems:

  • Dine' Citizens Against Ruining our Environment (Dine' CARE), Durango, United States
  • Frost Protection Corporation, Montevideo, Uruguay
  • David Kuykendall and Jim Hunter, Agricultural Research Service, USDA, Beltsville, United States
  • Dr. Kenneth Owens, Jr. and Paul Burgess, Humboldt State University, Arcata, United States
  • Shidhulai Swanirvar Sangstha (SSS), Dhaka, Bangladesh

Accenture Economic Development Award -- Providing innovative technology solutions to overcome significant barriers to economic development in non-industrial countries:

  • Centre for Development of Disadvantaged People, Chennai, India
  • Grameen Foundation USA – Grameen Technology Center, Seattle, United States
  • Indigenous Stock Exchange, Barrengarry, New South Wales, Australia
  • International Development Enterprises-International, Lakewood, United States
  • Dr. Bir Bahadur Singh, Kano, Nigeria

The Microsoft Education Award -- Delivering technology applications that remove barriers to education such as computer and Internet access, infrastructure problems, language, and poverty:

  • Baruch College Computer Center for Visually Impaired People & Touch Graphics, Inc., New York City, United States
  • DonorsChoose, New York City, United States
  • iEARN-USA, New York City, United States
  • Andrew E. Lieberman, Asociación Ajb'atz' Enlace Quiché, Santa Cruz del Quiche, Guatemala
  • National Society for Earthquake Technology – Nepal, Kathmandu, Nepal

Agilent Technologies Equality Award -- Using technology to overcome human rights violations and improve the local democratic process:

  • Rodrigo Baggio, Committee for the Democratization of Information Technology-CDI, Rio De Janeiro, Brazil
  • CARE, San Francisco, United States
  • Engineers Without Borders, Toronto, Canada
  • NetHope, San Jose, United States
  • Whirlwind Wheelchair International at San Francisco State University, San Francisco, United States

Health Award -- Applying effective surgical techniques, vaccination programs, drug development strategies and human genome-based information to improve the safety of health care in marginalized communities and the rest of the world:

  • Fritz Institute, San Francisco, United States
  • Dr. Ashok J. Gadgil, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, United States
  • Integrated Medical Systems, Inc., Signal Hill, United States
  • SATELLIFE, Inc., Watertown, United States
  • Singapore Infra-red Fever Screening System (IFSS) Team, Defense Science & Technology Agency, Singapore Technologies Electronics, Ltd., Chartered Electro-Optic, Singapore

About The Tech Museum Awards
The concept for The Tech Museum Awards and its five categories was inspired in part by The State of the Future at the Millennium report of The Millennium Project of the American Council for the United Nations University, which recommends that award recognition is an effective way to accelerate scientific breakthroughs and technological applications to solve the most critical global challenges. The Awards were inaugurated in 2001.

Judging for The Tech Museum Awards is independently conducted by Santa Clara University's Center for Science, Technology and Society, a global network of academic and industry experts dedicated to understanding and influencing how science and technology impact society. They assemble five panels of judges from around the world, recruited from research institutions, industry and the public sector, who judged the nominations on five set criteria.

The Tech Museum Awards Partners
The Tech Awards represent a collaborative effort among educational institutions and business. Silicon Valley leaders supporting The Tech Awards include presenting sponsor Applied Materials, Inc., Santa Clara University's Center for Science, Technology, and Society, the United Nations Development Programme and The World Bank Institute. Category sponsors include Intel, Accenture, Microsoft, and Agilent Technologies Inc. Sponsorship of The Tech Awards provides an organization with an opportunity to showcase its support of the global community and align itself with a prestigious program whose sole focus is to address critical challenges facing the world. For more information on sponsorship opportunities, email

About The Tech Museum of Innovation
Located in the heart of downtown San Jose, Silicon Valley, Calif., The Tech, a non-profit organization, engages people of all ages and backgrounds in exploring and experiencing the technologies affecting their lives and aims to inspire the innovator in everyone. For more information, visit or call (408) 294-TECH.