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BioPark hosting tech awards ceremony

The ABQ BioPark Aquarium will play host to the annual Flying 40 technology awards Wednesday. (Raymond Watt/ABQ BioPark)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The annual Flying 40 technology awards is celebrating its 20th year, but it’s a bittersweet achievement with the closing of Technology Ventures Corp. on May 1.

TVC, which launched in 1993 when Lockheed Martin Corp. assumed management of Sandia National Laboratories, has worked to help entrepreneurs take new lab technologies to market and to assist others in launching and growing companies in New Mexico. But Lockheed Martin, which funded TVC, lost the lab contract in December. TVC’s funding ended when the new lab manager, Honeywell International, took over last month.

TVC was the organizer and driving force behind the Flying 40, which it launched in 1998 with four other longtime sponsors and partners: KPMG LLP, New Mexico Bank & Trust, the Journal’s Business Outlook, and the Sandia Science and Technology Park Development Corp.

Former TVC President and CEO John Freisinger said the remaining sponsors could continue to manage the Flying 40 in the future, something they will discuss after this year’s awards event.

“I believe the Flying 40 will transcend the TVC,” Freisinger said.

The event will be held on Wednesday, June 7, at the Albuquerque Aquarium and Botanical Gardens. It’s sold out, with 630 participants expected.

The late-afternoon venue includes strolls through the aquarium and gardens with live music and open-air food and beverage dining, followed by the Flying 40 awards celebration. Winners will receive sea life sculptures in honor of the aquarium.

Two companies, Siarza Social Digital and Asset Performance Technologies Inc., will receive Falcon Awards at the ceremony. Those are honorable mentions for firms that might not have the five-year history or minimum of $1 million in revenue needed to qualify for a Flying 40 Award, but whose strong growth shows high potential for creating jobs in the future.

Community sponsors this year include Achievement Gallery, Nusenda Credit Union, Sandia Laboratory Federal Credit Union, Sandia National Laboratories and Wells Fargo Bank.