Foundation Innovation Awards

Award summary

Research & Innovation annually presents two Foundation Innovation Awards to new and established University faculty and staff to recognize their contribution(s) to innovation, and/or for the commercialization of ideas that impact and benefit the public’s well-being. For these awards, innovation comprises all forms of discovery, creation and production of inventive and progressive ideas, methods, and products that promote society’s growth.

Awards in the amount of $5,000 each will be presented to recipients at the Honor the Best Ceremony.

The two Foundation Innovation Awards for faculty and staff are the:

  • Early Career Innovator Award — Honoring a full-time faculty or staff member who has been employed with the University for six years or less and whose work exemplifies the spirit of innovation, commercialization and entrepreneurship
  • Established Innovator Award — Honoring a full-time faculty or staff member who has been employed with the University for more than six years and whose recent work has actively contributed to innovation, commercialization, and entrepreneurship

View a list of Innovation award recipients

Selection committee and timeline

The deadline for the nominations is February 13, 2024.

The Selection Committee will comprise a member of the University Foundation Board, one University member and three external members.

Recipients will be notified in early April and receive the awards in early May, during the Honor the Best ceremony.

Who can nominate

Nominations may be submitted by any faculty or staff member of the University. Self-nominations are welcome as well.

Nomination materials

  • The nomination letter (2-3 pages) should be addressed to the Selection Committee and explain how the nominee has demonstrated a contribution to the innovation, commercialization or entrepreneurialism of ideas that have benefited society. Please provide specific examples of the steps that were taken to commercialize a discovery or innovation and its subsequent impact.
  • A copy of the nominee’s complete curriculum vitae.
  • A summary in 100 words (or less) of the nominee’s innovation efforts (for publicity purposes).


Email your completed nominations to

Additional information

If you have further questions or need additional information, please contact Research & Innovation at (775) 327-2363.