Dear Members and Friends,
Earlier this month, NextFlex held a round of member meetings that shared our vision of how we see flexible hybrid electronics, additive manufacturing, and advanced packaging evolving in the future. While there are many challenges ahead, we are confident that through our collaboration with members and others, we will not only rise together to meet those challenges, but we will also discover new opportunities along the way. The meetings provided members with project updates, government updates, and a chance to network together and with the NextFlex technical team. Members have asked for new ways to network with each other, particularly as the pandemic continues, so we were glad to help connect the community around important technical topics. Two of the breakout groups, Standards, Testing and Reliability and a potential new Technical Working Group on Automotive, made good progress on how to move forward. We were delighted that so many were able to participate, but if you missed it, all the recorded presentations are available for later viewing in the Member Portal.
A highlight of the meetings was, of course, the annual recognition of several key individuals who go above and beyond to help NextFlex achieve its mission. Those recognized received the designation as “NextFlex Fellow,” and received the award for their work in expanding learning programs nationally, guiding development of human health monitoring projects, and leading advanced manufacturing and flexible electronics from a materials and industry perspective.
This year’s NextFlex Fellow Award winners are:
- Doyle Edwards, Director of Government Programs, Brewer Science. As a frequent collaborator with NextFlex, Doyle has been a champion of NextFlex within his own company as well as the wider FHE community. With NextFlex’s help, Doyle has helped Brewer Science advance their own manufacturing programs and capabilities.
- Joey Mead, PhD., Interim Associate Dean, University Professor, Co-Director of Nanomanufacturing Center of Excellence; Deputy Director, NSF Center for High-rate Nanomanufacturing; Center Director, SHAP3D at UMass Lowell. Joey serves both as a member of the Governing Council and as academic co-lead for the Materials Technical Working Group for NextFlex.
- Courtney Taylor, Ph.D., Vice President of Workforce and Economic Development, East Mississippi Community College. Courtney is single-handedly responsible for the success of FlexFactor® in Huntsville with the Alabama Community College System. This successful implementation directly led to the expansion of FlexFactor to five additional locations around the country: Columbia in South Carolina, New Orleans and Chalmette in Louisiana, and Cypress and Torrance in California. Now living in Mississippi, Dr. Taylor leads an innovative workforce and economic development program and has announced that they will soon implement a new FlexFactor program with East Mississippi Community College as a key supporter of the local ecosystem.
- Jeremy Ward, Ph.D., Advanced Development Team Leader, Soft-Matter Materials, Air Force Research Laboratory, Materials and Manufacturing Directorate. Jeremy has been a strong supporter of NextFlex since its formation in 2015. He served as government co-lead of the Human Health Monitoring Technical Working Group until 2020.
Along with me, the NextFlex team thanks these individuals, as well as our past Fellow awardees, as they continue to make significant contributions toward furthering the development of flexible hybrid electronics and the advanced manufacturing ecosystem. Please join me in congratulating our 2021 NextFlex Fellows!
Malcolm J. Thompson, Ph.D.