Amazon, Cozi, Pathway, Talyst, and VholdR Among Winners at WTIA Awards Bash

3/5/10Follow @gthuang

Pardon me if I’m still a little hung over, but last night was a blast. Eight hundred techies packed into the Showbox SoDo in Seattle for the 15th annual Industry Achievement Awards organized by the Washington Technology Industry Association (WTIA). The awards recognize excellence in local tech companies, and the winners were selected by a distinguished panel of judges too long to list here.

Here’s a quick rundown of the awards:

—Talyst won in the “commercial product or service” category, beating out Apptio and Concur (two very worthy business software firms). As I described in a feature story last summer, Bellevue, WA-based Talyst makes software that helps pharmacies manage the flow of medications in hospitals, clinics, assisted living facilities, and correctional facilities. CEO Carla Corkern also spoke at the WTIA’s healthcare IT event last September.

—Seattle-based Cozi won for “consumer product or service of the year,” edging out Cheezburger Network and Picnik (two of the most popular Web startups in town). Cozi, which raised $5 million from a new strategic investor last month, makes Web-based software to help busy families plan activities and chores, manage to-do lists and schedules, and communicate better. Last summer, CEO Robbie Cape talked with me about some of the company’s big partnerships (with Dell and Gannett, for example) and his startup philosophy.

—Seattle-based VholdR won for “breakthrough startup of the year,” beating some stiff competition from DreamBox Learning and Gist. VholdR makes high-def wearable video cameras and software for skiers, explorers, and other sports enthusiasts to share their stories of action and adventures, through an online video community. The idea for the company dates back to 2003, when founders Marc Barros and Jason Green won third place in the University of Washington business plan competition.

—Amazon Web Services (AWS) beat out Azaleos and Hubspan for “service provider of the year.” Earlier in the day, Steve Ballmer spoke about Microsoft’s cloud computing strategy, but Seattle-based AWS has been leading the field since 2006, at least for startup developers looking to rent flexible Web-based data storage and processing power to run their Web services. Amazon vice president Adam Selipsky talked about how Amazon’s cloud computing platform works, at another WTIA event exactly a year ago.

—Pathway Medical Technologies edged out Neah Power Systems and Powerit Solutions for the title of “innovative manufactured product of the year.” Kirkland, WA-based Pathway sells a device that helps doctors drill through and vacuum out blockages in leg arteries. The company has gone through an up-and-down year, as Luke reported in an in-depth feature last fall, but it seems to be adjusting to a challenging healthcare market. Pathway was co-founded by Tom Clement in 1998 and is now led by CEO Paul Buckman.

—Last but not least, Washington State Employees Credit Union won for “information technology department innovation,” OneBusAway won for “best use of technology in the government, nonprofit or education sector,” and Ruby Damper, a 7th grader at Orca school in Seattle, won for “technology leader of tomorrow.”

Gregory T. Huang is Xconomy's Deputy Editor, National IT Editor, and the Editor of Xconomy Boston. You can e-mail him at gthuang@xconomy.com or call him at 617-252-7323. Follow @gthuang

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