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Lanny Smoot, a distinguished BEYA recipient in the most promising engineering category, was recognized as one of the innovation pioneers in the 2024 National Inventors Hall of Fame Inductees class.

In partnership with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO), the Hall of Fame honored this year’s inductees on May 9.

Lanny Smoot was acknowledged for his work in theatrical technologies and special effects.

As a patent leader with over 100 patents at The Walt Disney Company, he has developed numerous special effects, interactive experiences, new ride vehicle and robotic concepts, and other technological advancements for Disney’s theme parks, attractions, resorts, hotels, and cruise ships, creating magical guest experiences and driving innovation for future attractions.

The induction ceremony, themed “The Greatest Celebration of American Innovation,” took place in Washington, D.C.

On May 8, there was an Illumination Ceremony at the National Inventors Hall of Fame Museum at the USPTO Headquarters in Alexandria, Virginia.

New inductees placed their names on illuminated hexagons in the museum’s Gallery of Icons.

On May 9, the 2024 National Inventors Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony was held at The Anthem in Washington, D.C., where the new inductee class was honored for their contributions to society during an evening event.

In a photo taken at the event, Lanny Smoot is seen speaking to engineer and entrepreneur Lonnie Jonson, the inventor of the Super Soaker, a best-selling toy that has generated well over a billion in sales.

Johnson was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame in 2022 and is also a past winner of the Black Engineer of the Year category award.

The National Inventors Hall of Fame was founded in 1973 in partnership with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

The Hall of Fame is committed to not only honoring the individuals whose inventions have made the world a better place but also to ensuring that American ingenuity continues to thrive in the hands of future generations through its national, hands-on educational programming and collegiate competitions focused on the exploration of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

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