Smithville Student Wins Award at Raytheon Technologies Invention Convention

June 13, 2022

Sixth-grade student Anderson Fortner from Smithville, son of Joe and Misty Fortner, was honored recently for his ingenuity at the seventh annual Raytheon Technologies Invention Convention U.S. Nationals, powered by The Henry Ford. This student was among over 68 award-winning K-12 inventors from across the nation who were celebrated at the awards ceremony held on June 3.

Fortner earned the Manufacturing and Tools Industry Award and Cooley Patent Application Award for his invention of the Tire Lock

“The Tire Lock is a mechanism that will hold your lawnmower or four-wheeler stationary on a trailer during transportation.”

Invention Convention Worldwide is a global K-12 invention education curricular program mapped to national and state educational standards that teaches students problem-identification, problem-solving, entrepreneurship, and creativity skills. The program helps young inventors build lifelong confidence in their invention, innovation, and entrepreneurship abilities.

Following two years of holding the competition virtually, Raytheon Technologies Invention Convention U.S. Nationals returned to its in-person home at The Henry Ford for its seventh annual event. Prior to advancing to the US national event, students competed at local and regional levels. To participate in Invention Convention, students had to submit a video presentation of their invention, a prototype, an inventor’s logbook showing the journey of their invention process, and a display board highlighting key points of the invention process.

Prizes and opportunities this year included pro bono patent awards from law firms WilmerHale, Cantor Colburn, Cooley, and Clark Hill, gift cards, and scholarships from the event’s sponsors, including title sponsor Raytheon Technologies. The winner of the event’s top accolade, the Raytheon Technologies Most Innovative Award, received a $2,500 scholarship.

The mission of Invention Convention Worldwide is to bring invention education to every student everywhere. Organizations interested in bringing the year-long program to their region can get more information at

Located in Dearborn, Michigan, The Henry Ford, a globally recognized destination, fosters inspiration and learning from hands-on encounters with artifacts that represent the most comprehensive collection anywhere focusing on innovation, ingenuity and resourcefulness in America. Its unique venues include Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation, Greenfield Village, Ford Rouge Factory Tour, Benson Ford Research Center and Henry Ford Academy, a public charter high school. Together with its online presence at, its national television series The Henry Ford’s Innovation Nation and Invention Convention Worldwide, the growing affiliation of organizations fostering innovation, invention and entrepreneurship in K-12 students, The Henry Ford inspires individuals to unlock their potential and help shape a better future.

Raytheon Technologies Corporation is an aerospace and defense company that provides advanced systems and services for commercial, military and government customers worldwide. With four industry-leading businesses ― Collins Aerospace Systems, Pratt & Whitney, Raytheon Intelligence & Space and Raytheon Missiles & Defense ― the company delivers solutions that push the boundaries in avionics, cybersecurity, directed energy, electric propulsion, hypersonics, and quantum physics. The company, formed in 2020 through the combination of Raytheon Company and the United Technologies Corporation aerospace businesses, is headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts.