National Academy of Inventors names five UT faculty members to 2017 Class of Fellows

Five faculty members from four UT institutions have been selected as Fellows to the National Academy of Inventors (NAI), the highest professional accolade bestowed to academic inventors.

They are:

  • Dereje Agonafer, UT Arlington, professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering 
  • Robert W. Heath Jr., UT Austin, professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
  • Shelly Sakiyama-Elbert, UT Austin, professor and chair of the Department of Biomedical Engineering
  • James P. Allison, UT MD Anderson Cancer Center, professor and chair of the Department of Immunology
  • Scott C. Weaver, UT Medical Branch, professor and chair of the Department of Microbiology & Immunology

The five UT faculty members are part of a class of 155 fellows announced this month. Altogether, there are now 912 NAI Fellows, representing over 250 research universities and governmental and non-profit research institutes. The 2017 Fellows are named inventors on nearly 6,000 issued U.S. patents, bringing the collective patents held by all NAI Fellows to more than 32,000 issued U.S. patents. 

Those who are elected to NAI Fellow status must have demonstrated a prolific spirit of innovation in creating or facilitating outstanding inventions that have made a tangible impact on quality of life, economic development, and welfare of society. Those elected to the rank of NAI Fellow are named inventors on U.S. patents and were nominated by their peers for outstanding contributions in areas such as patents and licensing, innovative discovery and technology, significant impact on society, and support and enhancement of innovation.

For more information, read the news releases from NAI, UT Austin, UT Arlington and UTMB.

A full list of all University of Texas faculty members belonging to the NAI is listed here:

  • Agonafer, Dereje, The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Agrawal, C. Mauli, The University of Texas at San Antonio
  • Akopian, David, The University of Texas at San Antonio
  • Allison, James P. , The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • Armstrong, Daniel W., The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Baughman, Ray H., The University of Texas at Dallas
  • Beaman, Jr., Joseph J., The University of Texas at Austin
  • Behbehani, Khosrow, The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Cason, Carolyn L., The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Chen, Nai Yuen, The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Coleman, James J., The University of Texas at Dallas
  • Dimos, Duane B., The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Eighmy, T. Taylor, The University of Texas at San Antonio
  • Georgiou, George, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Goodenough, John B., The University of Texas at Austin
  • Heath, Jr., Robert W.,The University of Texas at Austin
  • Karbhari, Vistasp M., The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Kondraske, George V., The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Lewis, Frank L., The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Magnusson, Robert, The University of Texas at Arlington
  • McGinity, James W., The University of Texas at Austin
  • Metcalfe, Robert M., The University of Texas at Austin
  • Milner, Thomas E., The University of Texas at Austin
  • Nygren, David R., The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Palmaz, Julio C., The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
  • Peppas, Nicholas A., The University of Texas at Austin
  • Reifsnider, Kenneth L., The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Sakiyama-Elbert, Shelly, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Sessler, Jonathan L., The University of Texas at Austin
  • Timmons, Richard B., The University of Texas at Arlington
  • Weaver, Scott C., The University of Texas Medical Branch

About The University of Texas System
Educating students, providing care for patients, conducting groundbreaking basic, applied and clinical research, and serving the needs of Texans and the nation for more than 130 years, The University of Texas System is one of the largest public university systems in the United States. With 14 institutions and a projected enrollment of more than 234,000 students, the UT System confers more than one-third of the state’s undergraduate degrees, educates approximately two-thirds of the state’s health care professionals annually and accounts for almost 70 percent of all research funds awarded to public institutions in Texas. The UT System’s operating budget for FY 2018 is $18.3 billion, funded in part by $3.6 billion in sponsored programs from federal, state, local and private sources. With more than 20,000 faculty – including Nobel laureates and members of the National Academies – and nearly 80,000 health care professionals, researchers, student advisors and support staff, the UT System is one of the largest employers in the state.

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News Contact Info

Karen Adler: kadler@utsystem.edu • 512-499-4360 (direct) • 210-912-8055 (cell)
Melanie Thompson: mthompson@utsystem.edu • 512-499-4487 (direct) • 832-724-1024 (cell)