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Two UVA Faculty Elected to the National Academy of Inventors

Boris Kovatchev and Robin Felder

Boris Kovatchev and Robin Felder

Tuesday, December 8, 2020

Robin Felder, Professor of Pathology, and Boris Kovatchev, Professor of Psychiatry and Neurobehavioral Sciences, have been named Fellows of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI). Felder and Kovatchev are among the 175 fellows honored as prolific academic innovators from across the world. The NAI Fellows Program highlights academic inventors who have demonstrated a 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. Election to NAI Fellow is the highest professional distinction accorded solely to academic inventors. To date, NAI Fellows hold more than 41,500 issued U.S. patents, which have generated over 13,000 licensed technologies and companies, and created more than 19.5 million jobs. In addition, over $1.6 trillion in revenue has been generated based on NAI Fellow discoveries.

The 2020 NAI Fellows Induction Ceremony will be held on June 8, 2021, in Tampa Florida, a commemorative event at the Tenth Annual Meeting of the National Academy of Inventors.

Citation for Robin Felder

Robin A. Felder PhD, is Professor of Pathology at the University of Virginia and the Associate Director for Clinical Chemistry in the University of Virginia Health System.   Felder is a prolific inventor and researcher in both robotics as well as the field of human biochemistry. He is the recipient of 27 prestigious prizes, including:

  • Engelberger Robotics Award for Leadership, at the 40th International Symposium on Robotics. 
  • Edlich-Henderson Innovator of the Year, the highest honor bestowed on a University of Virginia innovator.
  • American Association for Clinical Chemistry Annual Researcher Award,
  • National Academy for Clinical Biochemistry Annual Award.
  • Association for Clinical Biochemists (United Kingdom) and American Association for Clinical Chemistry Transatlantic Lectureship Award.
  • Japanese Clinical Laboratory Automation Biannual Chairman’s Award.

 He holds 22 U.S. patents and 3 foreign patents that have been licensed to 9 companies. He is the founder of nine companies over the past two decades, including WellAWARE Systems, Global Cell Solutions and Medical Automation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to reducing costs and improving efficiency in health care systems.

He has published over 350 articles, books, and book chapters. He is the founder of the Association for Laboratory Automation, and the founding editor of its world-renowned journal.

Citation for Boris Kovatchev

Boris P. Kovatchev is a Professor at the University of Virginia (UVA) School of Medicine, and the founding Director of the UVA Center for Diabetes Technology. Kovatchev specializes in mathematical modeling and computing, and for the past 25 years he has been an international leader in research and development for diabetes technology.

Kovatchev received the U.S. Diabetes Technology Leadership Award in 2008, and was honored for his significant leadership, vision and research in the application of science and engineering to fight diabetes. He is one of only a handful of Americans and the first-ever mathematician to receive the award. In 2011 he was named the UVA's Edlich-Henderson Inventor of the Year, and in 2013 he was the recipient of JDRF's Gerold and Kayla Grodsky Award presented for outstanding scientific contributions to diabetes research. He was named one of the top 14 Pioneers of Medical Progress by U.S. News and World Report in 2009.

Dr. Kovatchev holds 18 U.S. patents and 73 international patents. He has authored over 200 peer-reviewed publications, and is a member of the editorial boards of IEEE Transactions on Biomedical Engineering and the Journal of Diabetes Science and Technology.