The Fifth Annual American Ingenuity Awards

The flagship publication of the Smithsonian Institution geared up to honor the winners of the fifth annual American Ingenuity Awards™ at a ceremony on December 8, 2016, at the National Portrait Gallery in Washington DC. Introduced in 2012, the American Ingenuity Awards™ have been called “the Golden Globes of the Intellect” and “the Academy Awards of Innovation.” They celebrate groundbreaking individuals across nine wide-ranging categories. This year’s winners are: Performing Arts: Aziz Ansari, actor, writer, comedian, for his innovative show “Master of None.” Award Presenter: Master of None actor Eric Warheim. Technology: Jeff Bezos, for advances in space exploration through his company Blue Origin. Award Presenter: Astronaut Mae Jamison Education: Film director David Lynch, for his work through the David Lynch Foundation to promote meditation in schools. Award Presenter: frequent Lynch collaborator, actor Kyle MacLachlan Visual Arts: OK Go, Damian Kulash, Trish Sie, for their groundbreaking, zero gravity video “Upside Down and Inside Out.” (OK Go will perform during the event). Award Presenter: Stephen Colbert (via video) and in person, NPR’s Ari Shapiro Social Progress: Marc Edwards and LeeAnne Walters, who uncovered the Flint, Michigan water crisis. Award Presenter: Erin Brokovich (via video) Life Sciences: Anthony Atala, whose innovations in 3D printing to create human organs is nothing short of a medical miracle. Award Presenter: Nina Tandon, CEO and co-founder of EpiBone, a company using patient’s stem cells to “grow their own bone.” History: Sarah Parcak, the “space archeologist,” is developing an online interactive citizen science platform so everyone with a computer can discover and monitor archaeological sites. Award Presenter: anthropologist, Acting Provost and Under Secretary for Museums and Research at the Smithsonian Institution Richard Kurin Youth Achievement: Christopher Gray, who created Scholly, an app and web platform that uses an algorithm to connect eligible students with pre-screened scholarships. Award Presenter: M. Night Shyamalan Physical Sciences: Kip Thorne, Rainer Weiss, Barry Barish, and Ronald Drever, for proving Einstein’s theory of the existence of gravitational waves in the universe. Award Presenter: Stephen Hawking (via video) and physicist Jim Gates in person. “We have always been an intensely creative, problem-solving country,” says Smithsonian magazine’s Editor in Chief Michael Caruso. “These are the Americans who are working hard every day to build our future.”

Photography by Mike Braaten

74

77

78

1

3

4

5

6

7

9

10

11

12

13

14

18

19

20

21

22

23

25

26

27

28

29

30

31

32

33

34

35

36

37

38

39

40

41

42

44

45

46

47

48

49

50

52

53

54

55

57

58

59

61

62

63

64

66

68

69

71