Tickets Available for Arizona’s Premier Technology Industry Event at

Phoenix Convention Center on November 8, 2018

PHOENIX--(BUSINESS WIRE)--#aztechcouncil--The Arizona

Commerce Authority have announced individual award winners, company

award finalists, Future Innovators of the Year and Teacher of the Year

winners for the 2018

the leaders and visionaries whose body of work contribute to the growth

and prosperity of Arizona’s technology sector.

“The 2018 honorees demonstrate the incredible talent in Arizona’s

technology ecosystem,” said Sandra Watson, President & CEO of the

Arizona Commerce Authority. “As a result of their success, Arizona is

recognized as a leading hub for innovation. We thank each of them for

their investments in our state and congratulate them on their


“Determining the winners and finalists for the 2018 GCOI celebration was

no simple task,” said Steven G. Zylstra, president and CEO of the

Arizona Technology Council. “As we continue to expand our portfolio of

world-class technology companies and promising startups, the competition

for these awards gets tougher. The innovators on this list are truly the

best and brightest in Arizona, and we look forward to honoring them.”

The individual/company award winners are:

  • Ed Denison Business Leader of the Year: Heidi Jannenga, WebPT,

  • Judges Award: Al Maag, MaagComplus, Tempe

One company within each of the following categories will be announced as

the winner at the GCOI event:

  • Innovator of the Year, Start-Up Company: BlackBar Engineering,
    Tucson; Paradox Inc., Scottsdale; and Regulonix, Tucson

  • Innovator of the Year, Small Company: CampusLogic, Chandler;
    Dynamic Water Technologies, Scottsdale; and Solera Health Inc., Phoenix

  • Innovator of the Year, Large Company: Benchmark, Phoenix; IBM,
    Tucson; and Opendoor, Scottsdale

  • Innovator of the Year Award – Academia: Dr. Yasin Silva and Dr.
    Deborah Hall – Bully Blocker, ASU, West Campus, Glendale; Dr. Ferran
    Garcia-Pichel, School of Life Sciences and The Biodesign Institute,
    ASU, Tempe; and Dr. Laurence Hurley, The University of Arizona, Tucson

The individual company award winners and finalists were evaluated and

chosen by the following selection committee of experts independent of

the Council:

  • Islamshah Amlani, Honeywell Aerospace

  • James Goulka, Arizona Tech Investors

  • Dave Higgins, Benchmark

  • Doug Hockstad, Tech Launch Arizona

  • Eric Miller, PADT

  • Mary O'Reilly, PhD, CEM, Flinn Foundation

  • Chuck Vermillion, AccountabilIT

The Future Innovators of the Year award winners represent the "Best of

the Best" of the Arizona Engineering and Science Fairs (grades 9-12) for

2018. The winning teacher will receive a $1,000 cash award and each of

the winning students will receive a $1,000 scholarship to further

enhance his or her education.

Future Innovators of the Year Award Winners:

  • Damian Galasso, Galasso Homeschool, Tucson

  • Bryan Gopal, Brophy College Preparatory, Phoenix

  • Trevor Hale, Liberty High School, Peoria

  • Rohit Nandakumar, Basha High School, Chandler

Future Innovators of the Year Honorable Mentions:

  • Nikita Bharati, Basha High School, Chandler

  • Sukesh Ram, BASIS, Peoria

Teacher of the Year Award Winner:

  • Pradip Misra, Bagdad High School, Bagdad

Teacher Honorable Mentions:

  • Katy Gazda, Red Mountain High School, Mesa

  • Hilary Stacey, Empire High School, Tucson

The Future Innovators and Teacher of the Year award winners were

evaluated and chosen by a selection committee independent of the

Council, including members of the Arizona

supports, promotes and coordinates programs and activities of the

engineering and science associations within the state of Arizona through

facilitated communication and leadership.

In its 15th year, GCOI will be held 4:00 - 8:30 p.m. on

Thursday, November 8, 2018, at Phoenix Convention Center, 100 N. 3rd

St., West Building, 3rd Floor. The event attracts more

than 850 attendees each year for a night of networking, food, and


The event will consist of a strolling dinner and Tech Showcase followed

by a theatre-style awards program. The Tech Showcase includes over 50

companies showcasing their innovations, culture and future here in

Arizona. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased online

About the Arizona Technology Council

The Arizona Technology Council (AZTC) is Arizona’s premier trade

association for science and technology companies. Recognized as having a

diverse professional business community, Council members work towards

furthering the advancement of technology in Arizona through leadership,

education, legislation and social action. The Council offers numerous

events, educational forums and business conferences that bring together

leaders, visionaries, and community members to make an impact on the

technology industry. These interactions contribute to the Council’s

culture of growing member businesses and transforming technology in

Arizona. To become a member or to learn more about the Arizona

Technology Council, please visit

and follow AZTC on Twitter at @aztechcouncil.

About the Arizona Commerce Authority

The Arizona Commerce Authority (ACA) is the state's leading economic

development organization with a streamlined mission to grow and

strengthen Arizona's economy. The ACA uses a three-pronged approach to

advance the overall economy: attract, expand, create - attract

out-of-state companies to establish operations in Arizona; work with

existing companies to expand their business in Arizona and beyond; and

help entrepreneurs create new Arizona businesses in targeted industries.

For more information, please visit

and follow the ACA on Twitter at @azcommerce.


Media contact:


Alec Robertson




Organization contact:


Technology Council

Steven G. Zylstra