C4IP is recognizing an inventor who paved the way for more people to participate in democracy through his patented voting machine.
Roland J. Harp, American inventor and founder of Harp Enterprises, Inc. Harp invented a voting machine that employs audio presentation, allowing visually-impaired and blind individuals – as well as individuals with lower literacy skills – to cast a vote independently and in privacy. The presentation identifies all of the candidate and proposition choices and guides individuals through the entire selection process in a straight-forward manner. This audio guide can function alone or in combination with a tactile map. This patented invention, in no uncertain terms, increased accessibility at the polls and enabled more Americans to confidently exercise their right to vote — without loss of anonymity or subjection to outside influences. Today, Harp Enterprises continues to build on this legacy, servicing patented, computerized voting systems in over 130 county governments across Kentucky, Tennessee, Indiana, and Arkansas.