Researcher’s win a trail blazer for ‘Winnovative’ female engineers

Karen Reynolds, Women in Innovation (Winnovation) Engineering award winner
Karen Reynolds, Women in Innovation Engineering award winner

Professor Karen Reynolds, the driving force behind Flinders University’s Medical Device Partnering Program (MDPP), has been recognised as one of South Australia’s most innovative women after winning the Engineering category at last night’s Women in Innovation (Winnovation) awards in Adelaide.

Professor Reynolds developed the MDPP, an innovative model for collaboration between researchers, end-users and commercial partners, to help catalyse the medical technology industry in South Australia.

The program, which received funding this week to plan a national roll-out, has helped small to medium enterprises play a key role in driving South Australia’s economic transformation by engaging with more than 300 companies or inventors to help them get their medical technology to market.

Based at Flinders University’s Tonsley Innovation Precinct, Professor Reynolds’ leading edge research has seen her received a string of high profile awards in recent years, including the coveted tile of South Australian Scientist of the Year.

Last night’s Winnovation awards brought together a power-packed ‘who’s who’ of high performing South Australian women at the South Australian Health and Medical Research Institute (SAHMRI).

South Australian Government Ministers Kyam Maher and Katrine Hildyard were on hand as the awards praised the State’s “unsung heroes, quiet achievers, difference makers mavericks” for “challenging the known or solving the unknown in their contribution to South Australian enterprise”.

Professor Reynolds said she hoped her award would inspire other women to recognise the value of their contribution to technology and engineering, and encourage more women to become involved in study and research in these areas.

“Women have so much to offer in the areas of technology and engineering, and I hope my success in some small way inspires them to become involved,” she said.

“Through initiatives like Flinders University’s Medical Device Partnering Program, I’ve been able to make a significant contribution to the development of medical technology that will have positive impacts in South Australia, and hopefully far beyond.

“I feel very honoured to see that success recognised at an event that acknowledges such a wide range of talented and inspiration South Australian women.”

Flinders PhD student Melanie Fuller was also recognised at the Winnovation Awards, as a runner-up in the Emerging Innovator category.

[article by Office of Communication and Engagement, Flinders University]

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