Bring us the all-time best small businesses' success stories in the SBIR Program...

SBIR Hall of Fame

The SBIR Hall of Fame, started in 2011, recognizes previous SBIR awardees with a long period of extraordinary success in research, innovation, and commercialization within the SBIR program.  

Hall of Fame Eligibility

For the SBIR Hall of Fame, nominees must be previous SBIR awardees that have contributed significantly to the program’s goals over a period of time through their work.  

Any individual who owns and operates or who bears principal responsibility for operating a business that received an SBIR Phase I and II award may be nominated.  Partners who jointly own and operate a business may be nominated as a “team,” so long as the number of individuals in the team nomination does not exceed four.  Nominees must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States or its territories at least 18 years of age and will be subject to background checks. Businesses owned and operated by nominees must comply with federal civil rights laws.  Nominees may have previously received a Tibbetts Award, although receipt of a Tibbetts Award is not required.

View full rules

How to enter

Hall of Fame Nomination Process

Nominations will be accepted starting December 15, 2011.  The nomination period will close on January 31, 2012 at 11:59 PM ET.  

Nomination packages must be submitted through the portal using the “Enter a Submission” tab.  Please note, you will need to establish a free account with in order to submit any nominations.   

Nomination packages must contain all the elements listed below, be uploaded in either MS Word or PDF format  and must not exceed the page or word limits identified below.

  1. Business profile, including (1 page):
    • Identification of Award
    • SBIR Hall of Fame
    • Business Name
    • Name of Business Owner/Operator
    • Mailing address
    • Email
    • Phone number
    • SBIR Award Year
    • SBIR Award Title
    • SBIR Award Phase
    • SBIR Awarding Agency
    • Name of Nominator
    • Nominator’s email
    • Nominator’s phone number
  2. 500 word (or less) description of the business for public release, if you win
  3. Five (5) page (or less) narrative answering the question with specific references to the evaluation criteria identified above: “Why does this business deserve to be in the SBIR Hall of Fame Award?”
  4. Photograph of nomines for public release, if you win
  5. OPTIONAL - Letters of support (no more than 3 letters may be submitted)


Ahson Wardak

Ahson Wardak
Senior Advisor at Office of Investment and Innovation, SBA

Steven Sullivan

Steven Sullivan
Program Manager for Navy Small Business Technology Transfer at Office of Naval Research

Joe Hennessey

Joe Hennessey
Acting Director of Industrial Innovation Programs at NSF

Maurice Swinton

Maurice Swinton
Past Director of Office of Technology, SBA

Edsel Brown

Edsel Brown
Director of Office of Technology, SBA

Judging Criteria

  • Technical Innovation
    Technical innovation – e.g., how the technical innovation has advanced national priorities in R&D, how the technical innovation has benefited the federal government or private citizens
  • Business Impact
    Business impact - e.g., job creation and retention, revenue growth, successful acquisition or financial exit
  • Broader social and economic benefit
    Broader social and economic benefit – e.g., encouraging women and minority participation in R&D, supporting regional economic development, creating connections to local universities
  • Degree of impact
    Degree of impact – e.g., a large IPO event, creation of a significant number of new jobs, acquisition by larger firm
  • Longevity
    Longevity – e.g., the company should be well established and have exited from the SBIR program several years ago