Speaking at the North Carolina Drone Summit, DRONERESPONDERS director Charles Werner announced the creation of the TEP to a crowd of public safety and drone industry professionals. He says the TEP will start off with 50 Technical Experts who have committed to serve and are in the process of being activated on the DRONERESPONDERS website and discussion forum.
“I am very excited about the start of our Technical Experts Program,” said Werner. “Each of these individuals have been vetted as subject matter experts in specific areas pertaining to public safety drone operations. They will now share their knowledge with other first responders who are operating UAS.”
DRONERESPONDERS Technical Experts (TE’s) will cover specific topics surrounding public safety UAS operations such as active shooter situations, beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) operations, emergency airspace authorizations, and HAZMAT responses. Werner says DRONERESPONDERS will continue to add new TE’s to the program as additional subject matter experts emerge. The responsibilities of the TE’s will include participation in the discussion forums, news blog, webinars, events and other activities as their schedules permit.
“We expect the DRONERESPONDERS Technical Experts to become regarding as the rock stars of the public safety UAS sector. These go-to specialists will help solve unique and complex challenges surrounding public safety drone operations,” says Werner. “Public safety agencies have a long tradition of helping one another, and the DRONERESPONDERS program will carry that legacy forward with the TEP.”
DRONERESPONDERS also announced the addition of five new members to their Board of Advisors. These respected leaders in the public safety UAS industry will serve both as advisors to, and ambassadors for, the DRONERESPONDERS program. The new Board of Advisors members include:
- Justine Hollingshead, Chief of Staff and Assistant Vice Chancellor, NC State University, North Carolina
- David Merrick, Director of the Emergency Management and Homeland Security Program, Florida State University, Florida
- Samuel Nelson, Project Manager and Coordinator of sUAS Flight Operations, MassDOT, Massachusetts
- Eric Schwartz, Quality Innovation and UAS Program Lead, Florida Power & Light Company, Florida
- Scott Wilkinson, Senior Academy Officer and RPAS Lead, Winnipeg Fire Paramedic Service, Canada
Rounding out the appointment of new DRONERESPONDERS members, the program has appointed Derrick Ward to serve as Public Safety Team Leader. Ward is a Firefighter and Lead UAS Pilot with the Los Angeles Fire Department. He will facilitate the DRONERESPONDERS discussion forum to help ensure the success of the TEP.
To view the full list of new DRONERESPONDERS Technical Experts, please visithttp://tep.droneresponders.org