The Gorge Technology Alliance held its seventh annual awards program on December 10, 2019, recognizing the Tech Leader and STEM Education Leader of the Year and honoring all finalists for the two awards. Mark Zanmiller received the GTA’s 2019 Technology Leader of the Year award for his legacy of leadership in Gorge tech businesses and the community. Mark is currently Business Development Director for Sightline Applications but has held key roles at four different early-stage Gorge tech companies. He has also volunteered innumerable hours on community boards and committees, including years as a Hood River City Councilor, and as an integral part of the Hood River County Christmas Project.
Patrick Getchis, STEM Teacher at Wy’east Middle School, received the 2019 STEM Education Leader of the Year award for his years of excellence in STEM education. Patrick has led middle-school robotics teams to World Competitions several times. He has an impressive and innovative maker lab, and classes that have opened opportunities especially for Latino students. His classroom is a place where all students are welcome and where all can see himself or herself as tech and STEM leaders. The GTA donates $1000 to the program of the STEM education award winner.
Additional finalists honored included Rob Gilchrist of Trillium Engineering and Jeff Knapp of Insitu for Tech Leader, and STEM educators Jeff Hawkins of Pacific Crest Innovation Academy, Jocelyn Paris of Wahtonka Community School, Dezirah Remington from Dufur School and Robert Wells-Clark of The Dalles High School.
The GTA’s annual awards program recognizes and thanks the many companies, organizations and individuals working to advance the tech industry and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education in the Columbia River Gorge. The GTA Technology Leader and STEM Education Leader of the Year awards are presented to the individual or organization who made the largest positive impact on the technology and STEM education community of the Columbia River Gorge. Nominations are accepted from across the Gorge and all finalists are celebrated at the annual Winter Party for their leadership and hard work. Learn more here.