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TechUnited:NJ Catalyst Awards Honors NJ Innovators and Bill Nye


TechUnited:NJ, a leading technology and innovation organization, recently hosted its much-anticipated Catalyst Awards in Asbury Park as part of the North to Shore event series. The Catalyst Awards brought together extraordinary leaders, disruptors, and entrepreneurs who are shaping a better future, pushing boundaries and challenging norms.  

The award ceremony highlights outstanding achievements in various categories, including progress, leadership, and hope with a night of dinner, drinks, and celebration. To cap off the evening, Aaron Price hosted a fireside-style chat with the legendary Bill Nye “the Science Guy,” a staunch supporter of science in technology.

The Innovators

The TechUnited:NJ Catalyst Awards celebrated and honored several outstanding individuals and organizations who are making remarkable contributions to the world of technology and innovation. Among those honored were:

  • Gov. Phil Murphy – The recipient of the Catalyst of Garden State Award, recognizing his significant contributions to the growth and development of the technology ecosystem in New Jersey.
  • Faith Taylor – Global Sustainability Officer at Kyndryl and President of Women@NJPAC, who took home the Catalyst of Empowerment Award. Taylor is being recognized for her exceptional leadership and dedication to empowering others in the technology industry.
  • The Center for Entrepreneurship at Monmouth University – Winner of the Catalyst of Ventures Award. This esteemed institution has been instrumental in fostering entrepreneurship and innovation, providing invaluable resources to aspiring entrepreneurs.
  • Vydia – Winner of the Catalyst of Technology Award. Vydia is being recognized for their groundbreaking contributions to the technology field, particularly in the realm of music video distribution and rights management.
  • Sampath Sowmyanarayan – CEO of Verizon Consumer, named the Catalyst of Leadership Award winner. Sowmyanarayan’s exceptional leadership and innovative strategies have played a vital role in shaping the future of Verizon and the telecommunications industry.
  • Fiserv FIN Future Techies STEAM Education Program – The recipient of the Catalyst of Education Award. This program is being recognized for its remarkable efforts in promoting STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) education and inspiring future generations of tech innovators.
  • The founding team at Culina Health – Winners of the Catalyst of Innovation Award. Culina Health has demonstrated outstanding innovation in the healthcare technology space, revolutionizing the way healthcare is delivered and managed.
  • Jonathan Schultz – CEO of Onyx Equities, who received the Martinson-Ballen Award. Schultz is being honored for his remarkable contributions to the real estate and technology industries, demonstrating immense innovation and leadership in his field.

These exceptional individuals and organizations serve as inspirations to others and exemplify the spirit of innovation and progress that the TechUnited:NJ Catalyst Awards aim to celebrate.

The Fireside Chat with Bill Nye

Aaron Price, the President & CEO of TechUnited:NJ, sat down with Bill Nye for a fireside chat. During this discussion, Nye underscored the importance of science, critical thinking, and reason within New Jersey’s thriving tech scene. He highlighted the potential of technology, asserting that technology creates more good than bad by bringing countless benefits to society such as job creation, improved communication, enhanced health services, and sustainable solutions.

One of the most notable points Nye raised was the untapped potential of geothermal energy in New Jersey. This sustainable energy source, which harnesses heat from the Earth’s interior, could be a game-changer for the state, offering a reliable, clean, and virtually inexhaustible power supply.

In recognition of his commitment to science education and his inspiring talk at the event, Bill Nye was honored with the Catalyst of Hope Award. This accolade signifies Nye’s unwavering dedication to advancing the cause of science and his belief in its potential to solve the world’s most pressing problems.

The evening was not only a recognition of the state’s brightest innovators but also a testament to the importance of science in our rapidly evolving tech landscape. With advocates like Nye and organizations like TechUnited:NJ, the future of New Jersey’s tech scene looks brighter than ever. The next event coming from TechUnited:NJ will be Propelify on October 5th in Hoboken.

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