Young Connecticut Scientists to be Awarded the H. Joseph Gerber Medal of Excellence

Hartford, CT — Three outstanding young Connecticut scientists will be awarded the H. Joseph Gerber Medal of Excellence at the 33stAnnual Meeting and Dinner of the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering on May 21, 2008, at the New Haven Lawn Club in New Haven, CT.

The award, created by the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering with the sponsorship of Gerber Scientific, Inc., is in recognition of H. Joseph Gerber’s (1924-1996) technical leadership in inventing, developing and commercializing manufacturing automation systems for a wide variety of industries, making those industries more efficient and cost-effective in a worldwide competitive environment.

As an inventor and as founder, Chief Executive Officer, Chairman of the Board and President for Gerber Scientific, Inc., Mr. Gerber was a leader for nearly half a century in inventing and producing factory automation equipment designed to solve global manufacturing problems. An elected member of the National Academy of Engineering and the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering, Mr. Gerber received the National Medal of Technology in 1994 followed by the Connecticut Medal of Technology in 1995.

The recipients of this year’s H. Joseph Gerber Medal of Excellence are 2008 Connecticut Science Fair winners Fiona W. Wood (1st Place, Life Sciences – Senior Division) of North Haven High School and Theresa A. Oei (1st Place, Physical Sciences – Senior Division) of East Catholic High School in Manchester, CT; and the 2008 Connecticut Science Challenge winner Ilya B. Belopolski of New Canaan High School (1st Place).

Wood’s winning Science Fair entry was entitled “A Numerical Model of Late-Spiking Neurons” and Oei’s award was for her project on “Use of Seashells to Detoxify Lead-Contaminated Effluent and Groundwater.” Belopolski, the winner of the Connecticut Science Challenge, won for his project on “The Effect of Short-Chain Fatty Acids on Gene Expression in Entamoeba histolytica.”

Gerber Scientific is the world’s leading supplier of sophisticated automated manufacturing systems for sign making and specialty graphics, apparel and flexible materials, and ophthalmic lens processing. Headquartered in South Windsor, Connecticut, the company operates through four businesses: Gerber Scientific Products, Spandex Ltd., Gerber Technology, and Gerber Coburn.


The Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering was chartered by the General Assembly in 1976 to provide expert guidance on science and technology to the people and to the state of Connecticut, and to promote the application of science and technology to human welfare and economic well being. For more information about the Academy, please see