STARBASE Minnesota Receives Tekne Award

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STARBASE Minnesota Receives Tekne Award

STARBASE Minnesota Receives Community Impact Award at the 2018 Tekne Awards

19th annual Tekne Awards recognized Minnesota’s technology innovators and innovations

STARBASE Minnesota Receives Tekne Award

St. Paul, MN Nov. 30, 2018 – The Minnesota High Tech Association (MHTA) has named STARBASE Minnesota as the recipient of the 2018 Tekne Award in the Community Impact award category. Held November 29 at the Minneapolis Convention Center, the Tekne Awards honor companies and individuals who have played a significant role in developing innovative, technological products and services that positively impact the lives and futures of people living around the world.

STARBASE Minnesota is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization founded in 1993 whose mission is to educate and inspire youth in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).  STARBASE is a program of the Department of Defense, hosted by the MN National Guard who provide an exciting, state of the art and high-tech STEM environment. A public/private partnership that works, STARBASE engages STEM-passionate stakeholders from government, military, education, and industry on a common vision of developing a love of STEM in students and future STEM-skilled workforce.  Since 1993, STARBASE has served over 64,000 youth in the Twin Cities and in  Duluth.  Innovative curriculum taught by top-notch educators in a “real world” context that is further enhanced by engineers and scientists from 17 leading STEM corporations brings STEM to life for students; the MN Guard provides capacity-building support that enables STARBASE to serve nearly 5,000 students each year.  In addition to their active involvement in STARBASE, these stakeholders and partners invest financially making STARBASE one of the most successful, mutually beneficial collaborations of federal, state, corporate and private entities in the region.  STARBASE’s engaging, evidenced-based 20-25-hour STEM programs for students in grades 4-6 are in high demand.  Currently, 60 Twin Cities and Duluth schools from 11 area school districts participate in STARBASE, free of charge, primarily students underrepresented in STEM.  STARBASE has a 22-member Board of Directors and 12-member Duluth Advisory Board with backgrounds in business, education, military and government.  All are passionate about igniting students’ interest in STEM and creating pathways to future careers.

Kim Van Wie, Executive Director shared just how honored the STARBASE board and staff are with this recognition, “The STARBASE Minnesota program is unique, bringing the public and private sectors together to develop the next generation of STEM leaders and innovators who will contribute to the economic health and strength of our communities.  With the involvement of our many partners, students are able to build a frame of reference for STEM in the real world, a newfound confidence and excitement about future STEM careers.” Mike Thyken, Chairman of STARBASE Board of Directors said, “It is an honor to be given this most prestigious award and to serve these students and communities. We are thrilled!”

Tekne Awards were presented to 16 of Minnesota’s most influential companies and recognized innovations in software, emerging technologies, STEM workforce development, cybersecurity, biotechnology, advanced manufacturing, and more.

“This year’s Tekne Award winners exemplify the diversity and strength of Minnesota’s innovative economy,” said Margaret Anderson Kelliher, president and CEO of the Minnesota High Tech Association. “The selected organizations all continuously challenge the status quo of the science and technology industries, and we were proud to honor them in this ceremony.”

About Minnesota High Tech Association (MHTA)

MHTA is an innovation and technology association united in fueling Minnesota’s prosperity. We help bring together the people of Minnesota’s technology ecosystem and lead the charge in directing technology issues to Minnesota’s state capitol. MHTA is the only membership organization that represents Minnesota’s entire technology-based economy. MHTA members include organizations of every size − involved in virtually every aspect of technology creation, production, application and education in Minnesota. Find out more online at or or follow MHTA on Twitter at

About Tekne

Each year the Tekne Awards shine a spotlight on Minnesota’s science and technology industry.  The gala affair draws nearly 1,000 attendees from across the state and from technology areas ranging from advanced manufacturing and information technology to healthcare and agricultural technology. The technology community comes together on this very special evening to celebrate Minnesota innovation and recognize Tekne Award finalists and recipients – the best and brightest of Minnesota’s diverse science and tech-based economy. The Tekne Awards began in 2000, and are presented by the Minnesota High Tech Association.

Find out more online at  or follow MHTA on Twitter at #TekneAwards