DRONERESPONDERS Public Safety Alliance Announces Inaugural Board of Advisors

Renowned UAS thought leaders from fire rescue, law enforcement, emergency management, and other stakeholder agencies to help guide and promote organizational mission
 MIAMI – The DRONERESPONDERS Public Safety Alliance, the leading 501(c)3 non-profit program advocating for and supporting the use of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) – also known as “drones” – for public safety missions has announced their inaugural Board of Advisors.  The 40-person roster contains many of the most renowned names from the realm of public safety UAS.
The inaugural 2019-2020 DRONERESPONDERS Public Safety Alliance Board of Advisors is comprised of:Greg Agvent,Senior Director of National News Technology, CNN AIR, GeorgiaJim Baker, Sergeant, UAS Lead, Collier County Sheriff’s Office, FloridaChris Barron, Executive Director, State Firefighters’ & Fire Marshals’ Association, TexasLeon Borrman, UAS Lead, Albany County Sheriff’s Office, New YorkGregory Crutsinger, Ph.D. GIS Specialist, Founder, Scholar Farms, CaliforniaDarshan Divakaran, UAS Program Engineer, NCDOT, North CarolinaAngi English, Chief of Staff, New Mexico Department of Homeland Security, New MexicoRichard Fields Battalion Chief, UAS Lead, Los Angeles City Fire Department, CaliforniaPaige Fitzgerald, UAS Program Manager, Delaware Emergency Management, DelawareKay Goss, Editorial Board of Review, Journal of Emergency Management, VirginiaChris Gould, Battalion Chief, Southern Manatee Fire & Rescue, FloridaChris Grazioso, sUAS Team Leader, Metropolitan Law Enforcement Council, MassachusettsCharlie Guddemi, State Interoperability Coordinator, Emergency Management, District of ColumbiaDavid Hartman, Battalion Chief (Ret.), Charlottesville Fire Department, VirginiaDepu John, Detective 2nd Grade, New York Police Department New YorkDrew Jurkofsky, Accident Reconstruction, City of Fort Collins Police Department, ColoradoCoitt Kessler, UAS Lead, Austin Fire Department, TexasRobert Koester, Ph.D. Lost Person Behavior, CEO, dbS Productions, VirginiaDavid Kovar, CEO, Unmanned & Robotic Systems Analysis (URSA), New HampshireJohn Lambert, President, AUVSI Florida Peninsula Chapter, FloridaCathy Lanier, Senior Vice President of Security, National Football League, New YorkMichael Leo, Captain, UAS Lead, Fire Department of New York, New YorkAnthony Loperfido, Police Sergeant, UAS Lead, Miami Beach Police Department, FloridaThomas Madigan, Commander, Alameda County Sheriff’s Office, CaliforniaTimothy Martin, Captain, Lead UAS Instructor, Huntington Beach Police Department, CaliforniaBen Miller, Director, Colorado Center of Excellence of Advanced Aerial Firefighting, ColoradoKeenan Newton, UAS Coordinator, Lynwood Fire Department, IllinoisMickey Osterreicher, General Counsel, National Press Photographers Association, New YorkEddie Reyes, Director, Prince William County Office of Public Safety, VirginiaSteve Rhode, Chief Pilot, Wake Forest Fire Department, North CarolinaGene Robinson, UAS SAR, Principal, Drone Pilot, Inc, TexasMatt Rogers, Police Sergeant, Aviation Unit, Michigan State Police, MichiganChris Sadler, Deputy Chief, UAS Lead, York County Fire and Life Safety, VirginiaHarold Schapelhouman, Chief, Menlo Park Fire District, CaliforniaPatrick Sherman, Drone Advisor/Thermographer, Tualatin Valley Fire Rescue, OregonDon Shinnamon, Vice President of Operations, Unmanned Safety Institute, FloridaChristopher Todd, Executive Director, AIRT (Airborne International Response Team), FloridaKenneth Voiret, Captain, Air Operations Division, Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, FloridaCliff Weaver, EMA Director, Evansville/Vanderburgh Emergency Management Agency, IndianaJay Willmott, UAS Subject Matter Expert, Virginia Center for Innovative Technology, VirginiaAustin Worcester, Senior Program Manager sUAS, Civil Air Patrol, Washington DC
“We are extremely fortunate to have such high caliber leaders willing to pitch-in and support the DRONERESPONDERS mission,” says Chief Charles Werner (ret.), Director of the DRONERESPONDERS program.  “This board of advisors will provide their specific expertise to help ensure that we are focusing on the proper goals and objectives to facilitate the use of UAS by public safety agencies.”
Werner says all DRONERESPONDERS advisory board members will serve an initial term from July 1 to December 31, 2020.  The advisors will then either be retained or replaced for a new 1 or 2-year terms starting January 1, 2021 and resulting in one-half of the DRONERESPONDERS advisory board positions re-opening on an annual basis.
“The adoption of UAS in the public safety sector is evolving extremely rapidly,” says Werner.  “It’s vital for DRONERESPONDERS to keep pace by continually absorbing and promoting new concepts and fresh ideas from those serving as our advisors.”
Werner realizes there is an abundance of UAS thought leadership within the public safety domain.  He wants more individuals to become involved and contribute to the DRONEREPONDERS mission through spearheading various committees, working groups and task forces.  He says DRONERESPONDERS is presently establishing partnerships across academia, industry, government agencies (local, state, and federal), and nongovernmental organizations.
The DRONERESPONDERS Public Safety Alliance is operated as an official program under AIRT, Inc., a Florida-based 501(c)3 non-profit organization formed in 2017 to help provide unmanned aviation research and charitable contributions for public safety and disaster relief. Individuals and organizational representatives interested in becoming more involved in the DRONERESPONDERS program should visit droneresponders.org to join the no-fee program.
“Make no mistake, we want and need all the help we can get in making the DRONERESPONDERS program successful,” says Werner.  “We have opportunities for everyone who has a strong desire to participate and contribute to get involved!”
About DRONERESPONDERS Public Safety Alliance

The DRONERESPONDERS non-profit mission is to facilitate preparedness, response and resilience using unmanned aircraft systems and related technologies operated by public safety, emergency management, and non-governmental volunteer organizations around the world.  The DRONERESPONDERS Public Safety Alliance is a 501(c)3 non-profit operating program of AIRT, Inc.  For more information on DRONERESPONDERS, please visit: http://droneresponders.org