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Robotics Pioneer Melonee Wise Wins 2022 Engelberger Award

Melonee Wise, Zebras Vice President of Robotics Automation (Picture: Zebra Technologies)

Robotics Pioneer Melonee Wise Wins 2022 Engelberger Award

Wise’s technology contributions recognized with ‘Nobel Prize’ of robotics!

Zebra Technologies Corporation (NASDAQ: ZBRA), an innovator at the front line of business with solutions and partners that deliver a performance edge, today announced Melonee Wise, Zebra’s Vice President of Robotics Automation, received the 2022 Engelberger Award for her contributions to robotics technology.

Wise received the award last night during a special dinner held at the Automatica Exhibition for Smart Automation and Robotics in Munich, Germany.

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Bestowed by the Association for Advancing Automation (A3) and dubbed the ‘Nobel Prize of Robotics,’ the accolade is widely recognized as the world’s most prestigious robotics award. Wise is one of only six individuals to receive an Engelberger award this year.

She was previously CEO of Fetch Robotics until its acquisition by Zebra Technologies in 2021, extending Zebra’s strategic vision into advanced robotics to produce market-leading innovations that customers use to help increase productivity, reduce costs and improve safety.

For nearly 20 years, Wise has been designing, building, and programming robotic hardware and software. She was the second employee at Willow Garage, a research and development laboratory specializing in robotics, where she led a team of engineers developing next-generation robot hardware and software. In 2014, she and other members of Willow Garage founded Fetch Robotics, which is best known for its autonomous mobile robots (AMRs) for warehouses.

“I’m truly honored to receive the Joseph Engelberger award for Technology,” Wise said. “Just as Engelberger forged the path of industrial robots in manufacturing automation, the Fetch Robotics team has followed in his footsteps to bring AMRs to the forefront of manufacturing, warehouse and logistics automation. I am deeply inspired by Engelberger’s work and with Zebra, I hope to continue to push the boundaries of robotics technology to enable the adoption of robotics in new industries and applications.”

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Zebra and Fetch’s combined power elevates human and robotic performance by augmenting capabilities and coordinating work and movement in real-time resulting in faster fulfillment, timely replenishment and autonomous movement of material for higher efficiencies and customer satisfaction.

Named after the late Joseph F. Engelberger, known throughout the world as the founding force behind industrial robotics, the Engelberger Robotics Award is the world's most prestigious robotics honor. Since its inception in 1977, the Engelberger Robotics Awards have been presented to 134 robotics leaders from 17 different nations for excellence in technology development, application, education and leadership. Each winner receives a $5,000 honorarium and commemorative medallion.

“As the robotics industry grows, so does our list of extremely talented nominees deserving of this coveted Engelberger Award,” said Jeff Burnstein, president of A3. “In their unique ways, each of these six remarkable individuals have played prominent roles in shaping the robotics industry we’re a part of today, from educating future roboticists in the U.S. and Italy to advancing the role of mobile, industrial and collaborative robotics in manufacturing facilities and warehouses alike.”

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