Public Safety Alliance Announces Inaugural Board of Advisors

Public Safety Alliance Announces Inaugural Board of Advisors

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, Georgia

Jim Baker, Sergeant, UAS Lead, Collier County Sheriff’s Office, Florida

Chris Barron, Executive Director, State Firefighters’ & Fire Marshals’ Association, Texas

Leon Borrman, UAS Lead, Albany County Sheriff’s Office, New York

Gregory Crutsinger, Ph.D. GIS Specialist, Founder, Scholar Farms, California

Darshan Divakaran, UAS Program Engineer, NCDOT, North Carolina

Angi English, Chief of Staff, New Mexico Department of Homeland Security, New Mexico

Richard Fields Battalion Chief, UAS Lead, Los Angeles City Fire Department, California

Paige Fitzgerald, UAS Program Manager, Delaware Emergency Management, Delaware

Kay Goss, Editorial Board of Review, Journal of Emergency Management, Virginia

Chris Gould, Battalion Chief, Southern Manatee Fire & Rescue, Florida

Chris Grazioso, sUAS Team Leader, Metropolitan Law Enforcement Council, Massachusetts

Charlie Guddemi, State Interoperability Coordinator, Emergency Management, District of Columbia

David Hartman, Battalion Chief (Ret.), Charlottesville Fire Department, Virginia

Depu John, Detective 2nd Grade, New York Police Department New York

Drew Jurkofsky, Accident Reconstruction, City of Fort Collins Police Department, Colorado

Coitt Kessler, UAS Lead, Austin Fire Department, Texas

Robert Koester, Ph.D. Lost Person Behavior, CEO, dbS Productions, Virginia

David Kovar, CEO, Unmanned & Robotic Systems Analysis (URSA), New Hampshire

John Lambert, President, AUVSI Florida Peninsula Chapter, Florida

Cathy Lanier, Senior Vice President of Security, National Football League, New York

Michael Leo, Captain, UAS Lead, Fire Department of New York, New York

Anthony Loperfido, Police Sergeant, UAS Lead, Miami Beach Police Department, Florida

Thomas Madigan, Commander, Alameda County Sheriff’s Office, California

Timothy Martin, Captain, Lead UAS Instructor, Huntington Beach Police Department, California

Ben Miller, Director, Colorado Center of Excellence of Advanced Aerial Firefighting, Colorado

Keenan Newton, UAS Coordinator, Lynwood Fire Department, Illinois

Mickey Osterreicher, General Counsel, National Press Photographers Association, New York

Eddie Reyes, Director, Prince William County Office of Public Safety, Virginia

Steve Rhode, Chief Pilot, Wake Forest Fire Department, North Carolina

Gene Robinson, UAS SAR, Principal, Drone Pilot, Inc, Texas

Matt Rogers, Police Sergeant, Aviation Unit, Michigan State Police, Michigan

Chris Sadler, Deputy Chief, UAS Lead, York County Fire and Life Safety, Virginia

Harold Schapelhouman, Chief, Menlo Park Fire District, California

Patrick Sherman, Drone Advisor/Thermographer, Tualatin Valley Fire Rescue, Oregon

Don Shinnamon, Vice President of Operations, Unmanned Safety Institute, Florida

Christopher Todd, Executive Director, AIRT (Airborne International Response Team), Florida

Kenneth Voiret, Captain, Air Operations Division, Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office, Florida

Cliff Weaver, EMA Director, Evansville/Vanderburgh Emergency Management Agency, Indiana

Jay Willmott, UAS Subject Matter Expert, Virginia Center for Innovative Technology, Virginia

Austin 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 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:

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