Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science



Birdwell and Wang Receive Wheeley Award

     Doug Birdwell (Professor, EECS) and Tse-Wei Wang (Associate Professor Emerita, CBE) received the B. Otto and Kathleen Wheeley Award for Excellence in Technology Transfer at the University of Tennessee Research Foundation’s Awards Luncheon on September 20, 2013.  The award, established by B. Otto and Kathleen Wheeley, recognizes and encourages technology transfer from the University to private industry.  The award recognizes the significance and success of technologies developed by Drs. Birdwell and Wang in UT’s Laboratory for Information Technologies, which they co-direct and was established in 1995. 

Criteria for the award include:

     Otto Wheeley, UT graduate, was deputy chairman of the Koppers Co. and president of Kopvenco, its venture capital subsidiary in the early 1980’s.  Eager to promote technological entrepreneurship in Tennessee, he founded Venture First Associates, Inc. and worked with UT to promote commercial development of university research.  Fifteen faculty members have received the award since it was established in 1989.

     Drs. Birdwell and Wang, together with other members of their team, developed and patented enabling information technologies for large-scale high performance DNA databases for human identification.  Their technologies are used throughout the United States and in many other countries under license from the University of Tennessee Research Foundation.  Licensing revenues for these technologies to date exceed $1M.

     Drs. Birdwell and Wang each received plaques at the luncheon in recognition of their 14 patents awarded during the past three years.  To date, they have received 23 patents covering these and related technologies.

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