Tibbetts Award

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Affectionately referred to as the "Tibbie", these national awards are made annually (since 1998) to those small firms, projects, organizations and individuals judged to exemplify the very best in SBIR achievement.

Tibbetts Awards recognize accomplishments where, in the judgement of those closely involved and often most immediately affected, the stimulus of SBIR funding has made an important and definable difference.


In selection for Tibbetts Awards, the focus is primarily on:

  • Economic impact of technological innovation
  • Business achievement and effective collaborations
  • Demonstrated state and regional impact and proven support

Hiatus and Return[edit]

In 2007 the Tibbetts award went on hiatus and was not awarded for the years 2008, 2009, and 2010. Nominations for the 2011 Tibbetts award opened on November 15, 2010. In 2011, Forty-four companies and eight individuals were selected to receive the award. Tibbets Awards were awarded to businesses ranging from medical device companies such as MedShape Solutions, to electronics manufacturers such as Qualcomm, Inc; to nanobiotechnology companies such as ANP Technologies.[1]

About the SBIR Program[edit]

Roland Tibbetts began the SBIR program as a tiny experimental project at the National Science Foundation. Today, the SBIR program has developed more than $21 billion worth of research by more than 15,000 firms—resulting in more than 45,000 patents. SBIR companies employ more than 400,000 scientists and engineers—making the program the largest concentration of scientific and engineering talent in the United States, exceeding the combined total of all American academic and non-profit institutions. Each year, 11 federal agencies award $2 billion in research contracts as part of the SBIR program.

Past winners[edit]

Ben Plowman receives his 2002 Tibbetts Award.


Winner Company
Eric Schmidt & Kevin Mahaffy Exquadrum, Inc


Winner Company
Jack Glaser MBF Bioscience
Pallabi Saboo Harmonia Holdings Group, LLC


Winner Location
Wyatt Technology Corp. Santa Barbara, CA


Winner Location
Network Foundation Technologies Ruston, La.
ANP Technologies Newark, Del.
Vecna Technologies, Inc. Cambridge, Mass.
Fiber Materials Biddeford, Maine


Winner Company
Eric Adolphe, Esq OPTIMUS Corporation
Houston Baker National Cancer Institute
Northrop Grumman Ship Systems
Pallabi Saboo Harmonia Holdings Group, LLC
Dr. James I. Finley Deputy Undersecretary of Defense (A&T)
Dr. James Nolan Decisive Analytics Corporation[2]
Patty Forbes Formerly Senate Committee on Small Business
Thomas Knight Invistics Corporation


Winner Company
Mr. Allen Baker Vital Strategies, Inc.
Mr. Stephen Guilfoos Air Force, Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL)
Dr. Patrick Guire Innovative Surface Technologies, Inc.
Mr. Richard Hendel Boeing Company
Dr. Mahendra Jain Kentucky Science & Engineering Foundation