From building robots to people, Dr. Jones is a prolific maker and founder. After his FIRST foray into engineering, he rapidly set out to start his first company as an undergraduate at IIT in Chicago delivering wireless internet on commuter rail lines. He finished his undergraduate degree in Aerospace Engineering, underscored by a substantial focus in robotics—founding Illinois Tech Robotics (ITR) and growing the Midwest FIRST organizations.
Subsequently, the not-yet Dr. Jones transitioned to pursuing his PhD in Neural and Biomedical Engineering at IIT and University of Chicago and conducting research at the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. Here, he developed a high-performance hand exoskeleton used for human-subjects research into rehabilitation from stroke. The tremendously rewarding endeavor involved an expansive effort across numerous disciplines of engineering and medicine and resulted in new insights for hand rehabilitation and new prospects for orthotic devices. During this time, he remained involved with FIRST, founded the Collegiate Robotics program, mentored ITR, and continued to volunteer with Midwest FIRST in under-served communities in Chicago.
Through it all, it was clear that leveraging technology to have an impact on health and human life was an imperative career goal, directly in clinical and translational research, driving products to market, or through community service.
This lead to joining a 3-person startup and accelerating a device for breast cancer ultrasound. In the subsequent 6 months from achieving his PhD, he lead this team taking the automated ultrasound device and company from prototype through 510k and ISO13485 to market launch.
After moving to Boston, he co-founded HD LifeSciences—a medical device company 3D printing titanium spine implants—where he focused on the intellectual property, research, and future device development. The implants embody essential elements for bone growth and usability, greatly surpassing existing solutions on the market. In just over a year, the company had received their 510k clearance, implanted over 300 devices, and received their first patent.
He currently maintains a focus on robotics, artificial intelligence, and medical devices—founding Awaire to pursue a machine intelligence based on neural systems and human emotional processing, working with AI detection of oral cancer in India, and continuing to be open to new collaborative opportunities.< Back to All Judges