Thursday, September 15, 2011


Cora Zayas Sayre is One of 15 Innovators From Around the World Recognized for Applying Technology to Benefit Humanity

(SAN JOSE, Calif. and LIBERTAD, Misamis Oriental) Sept. 15, 2011 – CORA ZAYAS SAYRE, was today named as a laureate of The Tech Awards 2011, one of 15 global innovators recognized each year for applying technology to benefit humanity and spark global change. The Tech Awards, a signature program of The Tech Museum, and presented by Applied Materials, Inc., selected CORA ZAYAS SAYRE from among hundreds of nominations representing 54 countries.

Cora and her outfit the Water, Agroforestry, Nutrition and Development (WAND) Foundation has succeeded in developing cheap, robust and aesthetic composting toilets applicable in most  areas (upland, coastal, slums) using local materials which prevents water contamination and the spread of disease while producing valuable fertilizer from human waste. This has vast potential in solving sanitation problems for 2.1 billion people worldwide at the bottom of the economic pyramid including millions in the Philippines who do not have access to toilets. 

The Tech Awards: Technology Benefiting Humanity is one of the premier annual humanitarian awards programs in the world, recognizing technical solutions that benefit humanity and address the most critical issues facing our planet and its people. The awards program honors 15 scientists and innovators annually alongside the recipient of the Global Humanitarian Award. Laureates are selected by a prestigious panel of international judges organized by the Center for Science, Technology, and Society at Santa Clara University, and made up of Santa Clara University faculty as well as leaders from educational and research institutions, industry and the public sector around the world.

“The Tech Awards is an incredible honor, recognizing individuals and organizations whose ideas and execution of those ideas are changing the world,” said Dr. Elmer Sayre, In-house Adviser of the WAND Foundation. “We are proud to be among those recognized for their contributions, and will continue to develop solutions that improve the overall well being of people worldwide.”  Dr. Sayre co-founded the WAND Foundation with Cora and co-designed with her various sanitation solutions.

“The global challenges of the day have become increasingly strident, more deeply rooted,” said David Whitman, Vice President of Signature Programs at The Tech Museum. “Still, there is hope. These incredibly impressive Laureates have all proven to be equal to, or better than, the challenge to make the world a better place. By celebrating their accomplishments today, we are encouraging future innovators to work toward solutions to make the world healthier, safer and more sustainable.”
Established in 2000, The Tech Awards recognizes 15 Laureates in five universal categories: education, equality, environment, economic development and health. These laureates have developed new technological solutions or innovative ways to use existing technologies to significantly improve the lives of people around the world.  One Laureate in each category will receive a $50,000 cash prize during the annual Awards Gala in Santa Clara  CA. on October 20.

This year, the laureates represent the truly global vision of the program, spanning countries such as India, Honduras, Ethiopia and the Philippines. Their work impacts people in many more countries worldwide.  The Tech Awards collaborates with humanitarian, educational, and business partners through global outreach efforts, giving people around the world the opportunity to benefit from the successful technologies recognized through The Tech Awards. The selected laureates’ projects address multiple humanitarian efforts including developing alternate ways to generate electricity, creating free educational tools, providing sanitation, and improving literacy among children.

Key sponsors supporting The Tech Awards include Applied Materials, Inc., Intel Corporation, Nokia, Microsoft, Swanson Foundation, Flextronics, Polycom, Skoll Foundation, KPMG, Ernst & Young, Accenture, eBay, Qatalyst, Google, Wells Fargo, Xilinx, American Airlines, Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide, Bain & Company, NBC11, San Jose Mercury News, Forbes, Stanford Social Innovation Review, TIME, Xfinity, MEMC Electronic Materials, Brassfield Estate Winery, Hilton San Jose, Convention Plaza Hotel, and Hayward Quartz Technology.

For more information about The Tech Awards, visit

About The Tech Museum
The Tech Museum is a hands-on science and technology institution designed to engage people of all ages and backgrounds in experiences that educate, inform, provoke thought, and inspire action. Ensconced in the heart of Silicon Valley, the museum captures the spirit of the region through innovative content and programs such as The Tech Challenge, our annual team design competition for youth, and the internationally renowned The Tech Awards, which recognizes technology to benefit humanity. Daily, The Tech Museum celebrates the present and encourages the development of pioneering ideas for a more promising future. For more information about The Tech Museum, visit The Tech Museum


Cora Zayas Sayre
Water, Agroforestry, Nutrition and Development (WAND) Foundation
Libertad, Misamis Oriental, 9021 Philippines.   Email:

Roqua Montez
The Tech Museum of Innovation
(408) 795-6225 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting            (408) 795-6225      end_of_the_skype_highlighting

Anne Heise
Ogilvy PR
(415) 677-2731 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting            (415) 677-2731      end_of_the_skype_highlighting

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