Florida Tech President Named to National Academy of Inventors, Holds 16 Patents In His Career

By  //  December 13, 2016

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McCay Joins Elite Group of 2016 Fellows

T. Dwayne McCay, the president of Florida Institute of Technology and a renowned engineer and research scientist who was awarded 16 patents during his academic career, has been named a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI). (FIT Image)

BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – T. Dwayne McCay, the president of Florida Institute of Technology and a renowned engineer and research scientist who was awarded 16 patents during his academic career, has been named a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI).

McCay, who also holds a joint appointment as professor in Physics and Space Sciences and Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Florida Tech, joins a 2016 class of 174 others from top universities and research agencies worldwide, including Harvard University, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Massachusets Institute of Technology and the NASA Jet Propulsion Lab.

Election to NAI Fellow status is a high professional distinction accorded to academic inventors who 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 the welfare of society.

With the election of the 2016 class there are now 757 NAI Fellows representing 229 research universities and governmental and non-profit research institutes. The 2016 Fellows are named inventors on 5,437 issued U.S. patents, bringing the collective patents held by all NAI Fellows to more than 26,000.

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McCay is now part of an elite list of fewer than 100 presidents and senior leaders of research universities and non-profit research institutes to be named NAI Fellows.

“I am deeply honored to join the other outstanding members of the 2016 class of NAI Fellows and to carry on the tradition of academic excellence and scientific curiosity these distinguished men and women represent,” McCay said.

Others accorded the honor include 376 members of the three branches of the National Academy of Sciences; 28 inductees of the National Inventors Hall of Fame; 45 recipients of the U.S. National Medal of Technology and Innovation and U.S. National Medal of Science; 28 Nobel Laureates, 215 AAAS Fellows; 132 IEEE Fellows; and 116 Fellows of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences, among other awards and distinctions.

McKay took over the presidency of Florida Tech in 2016. (FIT Image)

Prior to embarking on his career as a university administrator and leader in 1986, McCay served in several capacities at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama. He was chief of the propulsion division in the Structures and Propulsion Laboratory, served as Branch Chief of the Turbomachinery and Combustions Devices Branch and of the Propulsion Analysis Branch; and Senior Aerospace Engineer of the Auxiliary Propulsion Branch.

Previously, he was a Senior Research Physical Scientist at the Air Force Rocket Propulsion Laboratory and a Research Engineer at ARO Inc. at Arnold Air Force Station in Tullahoma, Tennessee.

The academic inventors and innovators elected to the rank of NAI Fellow are named inventors on U.S. patents and were nominated by their peers for outstanding contributions to innovation in areas such as patents and licensing, innovative discovery and technology, significant impact on society, and support and enhancement of innovation.

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The 2016 NAI Fellows were evaluated by a selection committee which included 19 members, comprising NAI Fellows, recipients of U.S. National Medals, National Inventors Hall of Fame inductees, members of the National Academies and senior officials from the USPTO, National Institute of Standards and Technology, Association of American Universities, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, Association of University Technology Managers, and other prominent organizations.

The 2016 Fellows will be inducted on April 6, 2017, as part of the Sixth Annual Conference of the National Academy of Inventors at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum in Boston. U.S. Commissioner for Patents Andrew H. Hirshfeld will provide the keynote address for the induction ceremony.


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