In November 2020, Poly-Med’s founder, Dr. Shalaby W. Shalaby, was awarded the Dr. Charles Townes Individual Lifetime Achievement Award. This awardhonors an individual who has exhibited a sustained commitment to the advancement of technology and the community through his/her technology-oriented and innovative contributions. Such contributions may be business, civic, and/or educational in nature and must benefit the state of South Carolina (SC).
InnoVision describes its awards program as the only one of its kind, calling it “a grassroots, volunteer led non-profit made-up of businesses, organizations, universities, and individuals dedicated to finding innovation and technology in products, services, and education from across the state, and recognizing and honoring peers for achievements in their respective fields.”
At Poly-Med, our roots and humble beginnings have always been a significant part of who we are and who we aspire to be. With the nomination and selection of Dr. Shalaby as the recipient of this award, this award honors Dr. Shalaby as an individual who has exhibited a sustained commitment to the advancement of technology and the community through his/her technology-oriented and innovative contributions.
In 1990, Dr. Shalaby came to the Upstate of SC to become a bioengineering professor at Clemson University; a post he was offered based on his pioneering work in the field of antibiotic delivery systems, bioadhesives, and bioabsorbable polymers. He was a prolific writer of successful federal grants, which provided research experience and financial support to scores of Clemson University graduate students. In 1993, he founded Poly-Med, Inc. in the Clemson Research Park, where he built two state-of-the-art R&D and manufacturing facilities, which served as a training ground for life science students at Clemson University.
In the twenty years Dr. Shalaby called the Upstate home, he brought honor and distinction to the Clemson University institution and numerous graduate students, who had the privilege to have him as a mentor. Additionally, South Carolina served as a place where he demonstrated that innovation could flourish. Decades before there was talk of creating a “knowledge economy” in the state, Dr. Shalaby was a living spirit of innovation, entrepreneurship, and job creation in his work at Clemson University and Poly-Med. While he had numerous opportunities to have his company acquired by giants in the life science industry, he chose to remain in the Upstate. He cherished the relationships and close ties with Clemson University and the opportunities of providing young, innovative minds hands-on experience in a real-world lab setting and the ability to create real-world life science breakthroughs.
Dr. Shalaby’s legacy of innovation will continue far into the future due to his impact on the lives he touched. His family and the Poly-Med team continue to mature and commercialize his ideas into the next generation of medical device innovations.
More about the Innovision Awards
InnoVision Awards, established in 1999, is South Carolina’s premier organization dedicated to the advancement of innovation and technology. InnoVision is the only program of its kind – a volunteer-led non-profit organization comprised of public and private partners from businesses, organizations, universities, along with individuals dedicated to discovering innovation and technology in products, services, and education from across the state of South Carolina. InnoVision seeks to recognize and honor peers for their achievements in their respective fields and the award is a mark of distinction for outstanding leadership, innovation, and technological excellence.