The Community Foundation of Louisville (CFL) and Greater Louisville Inc’s (GLI) EnterpriseCorp announced the winners of the 2015 Vogt Invention & Innovation Awards at a news conference Thursday. The awards target the manufacturing and hardware sector to help startup ideas and products develop into a viable and successful businesses in our region. The Vogt Awards reward entrepreneurs by investing in companies committed to economic growth and job creation.
The Community Foundation’s Vogt Invention and Innovation Fund has supported the Vogt Awards for more than 15 years. In that time nearly $2.5 million has been awarded to 50 companies. The program is administered by Greater Louisville Inc’s EnterpriseCorp, an economic development agency focused on entrepreneurial assistance.
“For the past fifteen years, we have had an impressive group of applicants and winners. This year is no different,” says Susan Barry, President and CEO of CFL. “This Vogt Awards encourages and rewards exciting and innovative ideas that will make a difference for years to come.”
The 2015 winners are:
The 2015 Vogt Invention & Innovation Award recipients each receive a $20,000 development grant that provides participation in a 10-week Lean Start-Up course by Nucleus: Kentucky’s Life Sciences and Innovation Center, appointment of professional mentors selected for compatibility to the project, and prototype development through the University of Louisville’s J.B. Speed School of Engineering. This includes advanced software, additive manufacture & 3D rapid prototyping, micro/nano technology and more. Winners also have access to GE Appliance industrial design and FirstBuild Microfactory, University of Louisville’s Rapid Prototyping Center and Micro/Nano Tech Center, LVL1 Hackerspace, and the Louisville Mini Maker Faire.
In addition, each recipient receives the opportunity to participate in Vogt Demo Day on November 17, 2015, where they will make presentations to regional investors and compete for a $100,000 award toward the further development of their project.
The late Henry V. Heuser Sr., a native Louisvillian and founder of the Henry Vogt Machine Company, created a $5 million endowment at CFL to support local entrepreneurship shortly before his death in 1999. Whenever Henry had an idea about how to make something better, quicker, or easier, all he had to do was walk out to the shop floor to assess its viability and commercial potential. His legacy is the establishment of an award that allows engineers and entrepreneurs access the same kinds of resources.
“ The Greater Louisville region continues to advance its manufacturing and hardware sector,” said EnterpriseCorp’s Director Lisa Bajorinas. “The Vogt awards spotlight our startups and fast growth companies through Henry Heuser Sr.’s vision.”
For more information about the Vogt Invention & Innovation Awards, go to www.vogtawards.com.