SCOTTSDALE, AZ, Apr 10, 2017 – Cyon Research Corp. announced the formation of COFES Institute, a non-profit think-tank that holds an annual, invitation-only event for the design and engineering software industry. After 18 years, Cyon Research Corp. is donating the rights to COFES, paving the way for the new COFES Institute. The COFES Institute, governed by a board of industry luminaries, will continue the tradition of holding an annual event for leading keynote visionaries who provide perspectives on the future of the industry. The 18th annual COFES began yesterday in Arizona at the Scottsdale Plaza Resort and runs through April 9.
According to Brad Holtz, president and CEO of Cyon Research Corp., Cyon Research has donated COFES to the COFES Institute so that the Institute may serve the COFES community for the next generation. “I have been looking for a way to ensure the future success of COFES as I transition into activities that are taking my focus beyond the sole scope of COFES. “With the formation of the COFES Institute, that search is over,” explained Holtz. “I have great confidence in the Board of Directors of the Institute, and I will continue to provide assistance and guidance to the Board of Directors. They, with the support of the COFES Advisory Board, will be able to serve the COFES community much better than I would be able to. Please join me in supporting this transition.”
COFES will now be managed by the COFES Institute which is a non-profit lead by Executive Director and President, Vincent Caprio. Caprio has a 30-year track-record of applying technology to solving problems in fields of science and engineering and is one of America’s leading advocates for research & development spending. “I am honored to accept this position,” said Vincent Caprio. “The founders, Dr. Joel Orr, Brad Holtz, and Evan Yares had a wonderful vision years ago. With COFES enjoying its 18th year, it is clear that the formula works.”
The Board of Directors is made up of the following members:
- Vincent Caprio – Executive Director and President, firstname.lastname@example.org – http://www.cofes.com
- Becca Yeh – COFES Event Director – http://www.cofes.com
- Jason Preston, Co-Founder of Dent, http://www.dentthefuture.com
- Jim Brown, President/Tech-Clarity – http://www.tech-clarity.com
- Jim Doxey, Product Configuration Manager, Oculus (division of Facebook) – http://www.oculus.com
- Nathanael Miller, Aerospace Engineer/NASA Langley Research Center – https://www.nasa.gov/
- Pete Wells, CEO, Smart2Market – http://www.smart2market.com
COFES had its genesis in the late 1990s and was the brainchild of Dr. Joel Orr, Brad Holtz, and Evan Yares. COFES was unique, founded on the idea that one-on-one interaction and the building of community are the most valuable functions of an industry forum. The first COFES was actually SOFES – Summit on the Future of Engineering Software – held in Chicago, November 1999.
The importance of COFES to the engineering software community can probably best be told by some its long-term participants quoted below.
- “COFES has always been a unique and valuable opportunity to meet with key people throughout the CAD industry and related businesses. I thank the Cyon Research team for the many successful COFES’s they have organized and look forward to the new COFES Institute continuing to evolve COFES to serve our industry’s future.” –Jon Hirschtick, founder OnShape / founder of SOLIDWORKS
- “Over the decades, in the world of engineering software, COFES has shown itself to be a unique catalyst for the exchange of ideas. This phenomenon has occurred, in large measure, as a result of Brad’s leadership, and a liberal amount of liquid refreshment (Editor’s note: Ideas and connections are plentiful at the Thursday evening poolside cocktail party – it is not to be missed). While I am sure, with the change to the COFES Institute, there may be some changes; I would hope that the formula, which Brad has used so well, will continue and flourish, especially that of encouraging the future stars from all over the world.”–Mike Payne, Founder Kenesto, co-founder/CEO SpaceClaim, CEO Spatial, co-founder Parametric Technology Corp
- “Transformations are happening in industries and technologies enabling new solutions to overcome complex problems, changing how we engage and work. COFES has strived to be a place where thought leaders and industry experts can gather, network, and discuss the future. The creation of the COFES Institute is a positive demonstration of this ongoing transformation, an opportunity to explore and influence the future of engineering.”–Linda Lokay, general manager, Spatial Corp, Dassault Systèmes
- “I want first and foremost to thank and commend Brad for his dedication to building and sustaining COFES – from its small experimental beginnings (in wintry Chicago) eighteen years ago to the industry institution that it is today. For me as an industry analyst, it is an important (and highly sociable) opportunity to stay current on company and industry trends and issues. I have often recommended it to other analysts in the investment community who are interested in the world of engineering software.”–Jay Vleeschhouwer, Software Research Griffin Securities
- “As a long-time COFES attendee, I am pleased to know that Brad has gone to such pains to ensure that all that is special about COFES will continue in the hands of the Institute. I am looking forward to this next chapter for this event.”–Ron Fritz, CEO Tech Soft 3D
- Since 2006, COFES has offered me a unique opportunity to meet and connect with industry leaders which have both inspired and helped me think outside the box. COFES provides a one-of-a-kind event which has created its own history, culture, and community driven by Brad Holtz and the COFES team. The COFES Institute will be an outstanding way to continue developing what Brad and COFES started with the next generation of engineers and software developers. –Oleg Shilovitsky, openBoM CEO and co-founder
In the end, COFES is about enabling innovation. Plethora, a Silicon Valley start-up, is an excellent example of the type of company that gains value participating in COFES. Plethora enables users of popular 3D packages (like SOLIDWORKS and Inventor) to receive instant manufacturability feedback, part pricing and ordering directly from the CAD system. Why simply stand on the shoulders of giants when you can talk with and learn from them as well,” said Jeremy Herrman, CTO of Plethora. “COFES is the place where those leaders share their experiences with newcomers to empower the next generation of engineering software.”
Nathanael Miller, aerospace engineer/NASA Langley Research Center sees COFES a “hive-mind” of the engineering software world. “I come to COFES to get insight. In my job building small satellites at NASA Langley, I have to design incredibly complex and highly constrained systems, with engineering software tools that are even more complex than the satellites my teams and I design,” said Miller. “When I look ahead at a maelstrom of capabilities ranging from advanced manufacturing to smart & networked devices, COFES gives me insight to effectively bring these new and complex tools to bear the challenges of national importance.”
“Our original idea for COFES was an industry meeting where substantive conversations could take place,” said Joel Orr. “The concept “touched a nerve”–it was something the engineering software industry was ripe for. More than that, COFES gave birth to a community, where deep and long-lasting relationships formed and grew. We have watched technologies spread and mature. We have watched young people take their first steps in engineering software–and eventually become leaders. Successful startups have emerged from the rich stew that is COFES. The best is yet to come!”
“COFES started as a conversation about the future of engineering software,” said Evan Yarres. The future is obviously perpetual and it is the role of COFES to help people to continue to explore that envelope. While the topics evolve, the value of the conversation has not. I am pleased that, with the COFES, the conversation will continue.”
“Speaking for the COFES community and the newly formed Board, we take our collective hats off to Brad, Joel, and Evan.” said Caprio. “Engineering software creates the things of this world, and out of this world, myself and the board will ensure COFES grows and develops to best serve this very important community.”
Now in its 18th year, COFES is the annual, invitation-only event for the design and engineering software industry. Widely recognized as a think-tank event, COFES (cofes.com) gathers design and engineering software leaders (vendors, users, press, and analysts) together to discuss the role engineering technology will play in the future survival and success of business. COFES is renowned for hosting leading keynote visionaries that provide a new perspective to the future of the industry. COFES is owned and operated by the COFES Institute. Apply for an invitation at apply.cofes.com.