Capital Region Serial Entrepreneur Named 2016 William F. Glaser ’53 Rensselaer Entrepreneur of the Year

Robert L. Godgart ’82: The 2016 William F. Glaser ’53 Rensselaer Entrepreneur of the Year

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September 8, 2016

Capital Region Serial Entrepreneur Named 2016 William F. Glaser ’53 Rensselaer Entrepreneur of the Year

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Alumnus Robert L. Godgart ’82, founder of Autotask and ChannelEyes, To Be Honored October 7

Troy, N.Y. — Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) alumnus and serial entrepreneur, inventor, and technology executive Robert L. Godgart ’82 has been selected as the 2016 William F. Glaser ’53 Rensselaer Entrepreneur of the Year. Established in 1990, the award brings the world of entrepreneurship and innovation into Rensselaer classrooms by recognizing successful entrepreneurs and role models who share their wisdom and experiences with students.

As a successful entrepreneur, Godgart started five companies and turned them all into market leaders. His visionary ideas took him on a journey to transform not one, but several industries. At Rensselaer, Godgart pioneered early computer applications in architecture and soon launched his first company, Image Systems Technology. The CAD Overlay product would become the world standard to put paper drawings on PC computers for architects and engineers.

Next, Godgart teamed up to create the Capital Region's first seed venture fund, leading investments in successful Rensselaer alumni companies such as Learnlinc and Vicarious Visions. He started PowerAdz to revolutionize the newspaper industry, putting 1,800 newspapers online. Godgart is most well-known for founding Autotask, the world’s leading information technology business management software, and also started ChannelEyes to reinvent how indirect sales channels are managed. Today, he gives back to the community as an executive coach, mentor, board member, and angel investor who helps CEOs and entrepreneurs accelerate their growth.

“We are excited to honor Bob Godgart as the recipient of this year’s William F. Glaser ’53 Rensselaer Entrepreneur of the Year, a hallmark event made possible due to the generosity of Bill Glaser in his dedication to promote and foster entrepreneurship in our world,” said Thomas Begley, dean of the Lally School. “Bob reflects the tenacity, innovation, and commitment of Rensselaer students and graduates who create solutions for a better tomorrow.”  

The Rensselaer Entrepreneur of the Year program will take place Friday, October 7, from 2:30 to 4 p.m. on the Rensselaer campus in the Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies auditorium. The event, which is free and open to the public, is sponsored by the Paul J. ’69 and Kathleen M. Severino Center for Technological Entrepreneurship and the Lally School of Management at Rensselaer.

“It is a great honor to receive this recognition from Rensselaer; however, it’s also for all the people behind these ventures that made them successful,” said Godgart. “Co-founders, management teams, investors, strategic partners, and most importantly, the employees and their families who spent so much of their lives dedicated to the startup life. I truly hope that my business journey will inspire young RPI entrepreneurs to pursue their technological dreams.” 

Godgart received his bachelor’s degree in architecture from Rensselaer with a concentration in building science, but ultimately became fascinated with computers. In 1980, before the days of personal computers and cell phones, he spent many nights in the lab pioneering computer applications in architecture.

Godgart has been an active leader in the information technology community, serving as chairman of CompTIA, the information technology industry's largest association, and was named several times as a CRN Magazine Channel Chief, the MSP Mentor 250, SMB 150, and the Channelnomics 12 Channel Leaders to Watch. 

Today, the William F. Glaser ’53 Rensselaer Entrepreneur of the Year Award has become part of a tradition at Rensselaer. Each year, the award celebrates entrepreneurs whose vision, commitment, and creativity exemplify the entrepreneurial spirit that is part of the past, present, and future of Rensselaer.

At Rensselaer, President Shirley Ann Jackson is guiding a transformation that fulfills the vision of The New Polytechnic, an emerging paradigm for teaching, learning, and research at Rensselaer. The foundation for this vision is the recognition that global challenges and opportunities are so great they cannot be adequately addressed by even the most talented person working alone. Rensselaer serves as a crossroads for collaboration—working with partners across disciplines, sectors, and geographic regions—to address complex global challenges, using the most advanced tools and technologies, many of which are developed at Rensselaer. Research at Rensselaer addresses some of the world’s most pressing technological challenges—from energy security and sustainable development to biotechnology and human health. The New Polytechnic is transformative in the global impact of research, in its innovative pedagogy, and in the lives of students at Rensselaer.

To RSVP for the 2016 William F. Glaser ’53 Rensselaer Entrepreneur of the Year Award event, visit http://scte.rpi.edu/2016eoy.

For more about the Lally School of Management, visit http://lallyschool.rpi.edu/.

About Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, founded in 1824, is America’s first technological research university. The university offers bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees in engineering; the sciences; information technology and web sciences; architecture; management; and the arts, humanities, and social sciences. Rensselaer faculty advance research in a wide range of fields, with an emphasis on biotechnology, nanotechnology, computational science and engineering, data science, and the media arts and technology. The Institute has an established record of success in the transfer of technology from the laboratory to the marketplace, fulfilling its founding mission of applying science “to the common purposes of life.” For more information, please visit http://www.rpi.edu.

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