Martha Bidez is Professor and Graduate Program Director – MEng in Advanced Safety Engineering and Management, University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) School of Engineering and President and CEO of BioEchoes, Inc. BioEchoes, Inc. is a biomedical engineering service and consultancy firm specializing in the fields of system safety, technology transfer, adult education and training. Dr. Bidez holds a BS in Biology from Auburn University (1979), BS in Mechanical Engineering (1985) and MS and PhD degrees in Biomedical Engineering from UAB (1983, 1987). She served as a full-time, tenured faculty member within the UAB School of Engineering from 1987- 1996. In 1997, she moved into the private sector as the founding President and CEO of BioHorizons, Inc., an international oral reconstructive device manufacturing company with a flagship product line based upon patented technology developed within Dr. Bidez’ UAB laboratory. As Chair of the Board of Directors, Dr. Bidez led the company through its sale to Health Point Capital in 2006. Currently, BioHorizons markets its products in 27 countries with more than $100 million in annual revenues. Her personal entrepreneurial story of becoming the first female CEO in the global medical device manufacturing industry has inspired audiences worldwide.
Dr. Bidez has received numerous recognitions for her accomplishments in both the academic and the private sectors. She was named a National Leadership Fellow of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation (1993-1996), UAB Distinguished Alumnus (1998), Alabama’s Business Woman of the Year (2002), inaugural inductee into the Alabama Women Business Owners Hall of Fame (2003) and recipient of the Jesse J. Lewis Community Service Award (2005) for her work in serving Birmingham’s homeless women and children. She has appeared on a broadcast of the ABC 20/20 news magazine addressing child auto safety and was featured in the book: Women Who Mean Business – Success Stories of Women Over Forty. Dr. Bidez has published extensively, provided 30 international invited presentations and workshops in 13 countries, and participated actively in public policy advocacy at the local, national and international levels, particularly related to consumer safety and women’s issues. Her career accomplishments were nationally recognized with her induction as a Fellow of the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE), which represents the top 2% of biomedical engineers in the United States. In 2011, the American Society of Safety Engineers (ASSE) named Dr. Bidez as one of “100 Women” (living or dead) who had made the greatest contributions to global safety.
Long dedicated to community service, Martha’s many civic activities have focused on the poor and excluded, particularly women and children. She was a founding director, Board President and now 20-year volunteer with Pathways, a Birmingham-based NGO providing comprehensive services to homeless women and their children to assist their re-entry into the mainstream of life. Martha also served as a Founding Director of the Women’s Fund of the Community Foundation of Greater Birmingham and Director of VOICES for Alabama’s Children. She served as the sole Public Member on the prestigious Executive Council of the Commission on Colleges; the accreditation body for all colleges in the 11-state southern region of the U.S.A. Martha presently serves as a Trustee for the Union Institute and University, based in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Married to her college sweetheart and best friend, Earle Bidez, for thirty years, Martha enjoys her time at home with Earle as well as their animal family. Their furry children include two dogs, Norton and Nellie and a precocious cat named Claire. Reading, bird-watching, gardening and adventure travel are her favorite pastime activities.