State House Innovation Day 2018 Celebrates Megatrends and the Future of Tech in Massachusetts
TechHUB Caucus Honors Leading Innovators with NextGEN Awards
The Massachusetts TechHUB Caucus hosted its 3rd marquee Innovation Day today, an event which brought 200-plus attendees to the State House to discuss “Megatrends and the Future of Tech in Massachusetts.” The Caucus also recognized the contributions of leading tech innovators with an inaugural round of NextGEN Awards, recognizing tech firms and organizations that are leading and innovating in their field and contributing to the Massachusetts tech economy for the next generation.
The event featured both home-grown tech companies and global corporations with a significant presence and investment in Massachusetts. These companies are developing technologies and driving innovation in areas including networking and communications, data analytics, robotics, autonomous vehicles, smart communities, wearable technology, and digital health.
Tech is one of the state’s strongest economic engines. According to the Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council’s 2017 State of Technology Report, the sector today directly employs over 300,000 and an additional 100,000 employed in tech occupations in other sectors of the economy, which including indirect jobs, underpinning 34% of all jobs in Massachusetts.
“Bringing the tech community to the State House is a critical step in forming relationships, educating our lawmakers, and shining a spotlight on how these innovators and innovations are not just fueling much of the Commonwealth’s economic growth, they are making huge impacts on businesses and consumers here in the region, in the nation, and around the world,” says Tom Hopcroft, CEO of MassTLC.
Keynote Speaker Andy Ory, Founder and CEO of 128 Technology, a firm that has developed a platform that addresses networking challenges by natively providing network based security, control and insight across enterprises, discussed the state’s history in micro-computing and the trending tech sectors it is leading in today.
The inaugural NextGEN Awards winners were recognized for a variety of distinguishing criteria, including: disruptive technology, rapidly scaling operations in Massachusetts, demonstrating best practices in diversity hiring, and having impact on a regional economy in the Commonwealth. The NextGEN Award winners include:
- 128 Technology – Burlington
- Center for Marine Robotics at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution — Falmouth
- MachineMetrics – Northampton
- Optimus Ride Inc. – Boston
- Partners Connected Health Innovation – Boston
- SolidEnergy Systems – Woburn
“Today was a terrific opportunity to explore what is possible thanks to the innovations of the businesses propelling Massachusetts forward,” said TechHUB Caucus co-chair Senator Karen Spilka (D-Ashland). “The winners of the NextGEN awards are transforming the future of technology and driving the next generation of economic growth.”
“We appreciate the opportunity to host a discussion with tech leaders and public officials here at the State House,” stated Representative Ann-Margaret Ferrante (D-Gloucester), TechHUB Caucus co-chair. “We are fortunate to have so much talent in Massachusetts, and the tech community is driving trends that are making a positive impact on our communities. I look forward to continuing an ongoing dialogue that will foster an even stronger innovation economy here in Massachusetts.”
The TechHUB Caucus is supported by a Working Group that includes: Dell, Google, MassTLC, TechNet, the MassTech Collaborative, Microsoft, MITX, and Verizon.
“The TechHUB Caucus plays a critical role in bringing together innovators from around the Commonwealth with policymakers, helping forge a deeper understanding and openness between the two groups,” said Tim Connelly, CEO/Executive Director of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, the public economic development agency tasked with growing the innovation economy in Massachusetts. “Innovation Day at the State House is a great event where we see this dynamic in action. It’s a prime opportunity to ask questions, get hands-on demos, and to hear from the tech sector about innovations that are just over the horizon.”
The event featured live demonstrations from well-known tech firms and Massachusetts startups which showcased innovative technologies. Participants included: 128 Technology, AUVSI, Bounce Imagining, Cisco, GreenSight Agronomics, Idea-A-Thon, Locus Robotics, Machine Metrics, NextShift Robotics, Onduo, Optimus Ride, Partners Connected Health Innovations, Pivotal, Raytheon, Riptide Autonomous Solutions, Solid Energy, Tech Goes Home, Tulip Interfaces, Verizon, and the Center for Marine Robotics at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution.
“Massachusetts is fortunate to have a thriving innovation sector. A strong ecosystem of innovators – from startups to large enterprises – is revolutionizing how we live and work,” said Donna Cupelo, Region President of Verizon New England. “Verizon understands firsthand how important it is to foster a culture of innovation that is driving trends and fueling economic growth for our state, our region and our nation.”