February 28, 2018


Scheduled Speakers

The following speakers are scheduled to appear:


Lisa Ellman (Keynote)

Widely recognized as one of the "world's foremost authorities on drones and law," Lisa Ellman offers a unique perspective and vast experience to clients, helping them push policy boundaries forward and get ahead in the fast-changing regulatory environment.

Lisa chairs the firm's Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) practice, a group dedicated to helping businesses succeed in the dynamic drone marketplace. Lisa's focus is expanding the commercial drone industry, including as co-founder and co-leader of the Commercial Drone Alliance. She also focuses on UAS security efforts. Lisa recently hosted the Domestic Drone Security Summit, for the first time ever bringing national security agencies together with industry to explore collaboration opportunities around drone security.

Throughout her career, Lisa has worked to bridge government policymaking and business innovation (a combination that has become known as "polivation".) Lisa has held a variety of positions at top levels of the executive branch at the White House and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ). Most recently, she led the DOJ's effort to develop policy that would govern the use of UAS in the United States, and represented the DOJ in the federal interagency process considering UAS-related policy issues.

Lisa is a highly sought-after thought leader on drones law and policy. Her opinions have been featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Fortune Magazine, and other publications — and she regularly appears on television to talk about the latest developments. Lisa was recently featured in Fortune's "Most Powerful Women" series for her efforts to develop policy to govern drone use in the United States. She also delivered a TEDx talk in 2014.

Dr. Timothy Amukele and Jeff Street, John Hopkins Medicine

Dr. Timothy Amukele is an assistant professor of pathology at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He is also the medical director of the Makerere University-Johns Hopkins University laboratory in Kampala, Uganda; the Laboratory co-Investigator for the Johns Hopkins Malawi Clinical Trials Unit in Blantyre, Malawi; and the associate director for clinical pathology programs for Pathologists Overseas Inc.. He is a diplomate of the American Board of Pathology. His research interests are twofold: the quality and impact of clinical laboratories in developing countries, and chronic diseases in sub-Saharan Africa.

Dr. Amukele earned his MD and PhD from Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University. He completed his residency at the University of Washington Medical Center in clinical pathology and performed a fellowship at the University of Washington Medical Center.

Peter Shannon, Levitate Capital


Peter Shannon has built his career as an entrepreneur and venture capitalist focusing on transportation and logistics technologies, including unmanned systems and aerial mobility and their application toward positive impact for the world’s growing megacities. In addition to investing, Peter is active in the aviation community around emerging standards and the intersection of regulatory and technology issues critical to enabling high-scale adoption of future aerial mobility systems.

Prior to his current work, Peter was at Firelake Capital and Atlas Venture. Peter's entrepreneurial experience began while an undergraduate, when he co-founded Eye Response, Inc., a company that pioneered computer eye-tracking systems.

Peter holds an MBA, with High Honors, from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and a BS, with Distinction, in Systems Engineering from the University of Virginia. Peter started flying when he was 19 and actively maintains a Private Pilot Certificate with Instrument Rating.

Dr. Parimal Kopardekar, NASA

Dr. Parimal Kopardekar serves as the Senior Engineer for Air Transportation Systems. Dr. Kopardekar has been conducting research to improve air transportation systems for the past 23 years. Dr. Kopardekar is a subject matter expert and recognized leader in aviation innovation focused on airspace operations, and he has extensive experience in autonomous systems and air traffic management. He enjoys generating new concepts and technologies to improve current operations and enable future air transportation system.

He served as the Manager of NASA's Safe Autonomous System Operations Project. The goal of the project was to develop autonomy-related concepts, technologies, and architectures that will increase efficiency, safety and capacity of airspace operations. Prior to that, he managed the NextGen Concepts and the Technology Development Project. He has published more than 40 articles, with two best paper awards. Dr. Kopardekar enjoys initiating new concepts and technology ideas that increase airspace capacity and throughput, increase mobility, reduce delays, and make air transportation more scalable. At NASA, he has initiated many innovative research initiatives, including reduced crew operations, net-enabled air traffic management, autonomy for airspace operations, Shadow-Mode Assessment using Realistic Technologies for the National Airspace System (SMART NAS), and Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) Traffic Management (UTM) to safely enable UAS operations in low-altitude airspace.

Dr. Kopardekar is the recipient of numerous NASA awards, including the NASA Exceptional Technology Achievement Medal, NASA ARMD Award for Partnerships, Outstanding Leadership Medal, and Engineer of the Year. He holds Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in Industrial Engineering and bachelor's degree in production engineering. He also serves as the Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Aerospace Operations.

Susan Roberts Founder, Policy Leader AiRXOS, a GE Venture

Susan has over 20 years of experience in aviation and Oil & Gas industries in both engineering and management roles. Susan is the Co-Founder of AiRXOS, a General Electric Venture focused on UAV technologies and services. Previously, Susan led the research and development program to develop GE’s NextGen compliant FMS system. Past experiences include leading development programs for US Army rotorcraft safety systems at BAE and supplier program management for space launch vehicles at Orbital Sciences.

She serves on multiple UAS committees in various positions including acting as subject matter expert on UTM for JARUS SCB, industry expert of Gov. Snyder’s UAV Task Force, and President of the Board for the Commercial Drone Alliance. Susan has a doctorate in Business administration focused on innovation and technology, and MBA and a BSEE.

Dr. Jamey Jacob, Oklahoma State University

Jamey D. Jacob is a professor of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering with funded research in aerospace applications from DARPA, AFOSR, SOCOM, NASA, NextGen Aeronautics, General Electric Aircraft Engines, Boeing, and others. Main research interests include aircraft configuration optimization, low speed aerodynamics, micro- and nano-air vehicles, vortex flows, inflatable wings, active flow control, and wind tunnel and flight testing and other experimental methods, including modern measurement techniques, particularly non-intrusive global methods such as digital particle image velocimetry.

He is the author of over 50 papers and technical reports in the areas of aerodynamics, flow control, and fluid mechanics.

He received his B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Oklahoma in 1990 and his M.S and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of California at Berkeley in 1992 and 1995, respectively. He was a National Research Council Summer Faculty Fellow in the Air Force Research Laboratory at WPAFB in both 2003 and 2004.

He spent 10 years as a professor at the University of Kentucky in the Mechanical Engineering Dept. He is currently the Ray and Linda Booker Professor in Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering at Oklahoma State University.

Duston Holt, Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma


Dustin Holt is the GIS Manager for the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma. Dustin has been with the Choctaw nation since 2012 and has nine years of experience in the GIS field. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in GIS from East Central University in Ada Oklahoma and is currently working on his Master's degree in GIScience at Northwest Missouri State University in Maryville Missouri. Dustin is also a certified Geographic Information Systems Professional (GISP) and is currently serving on the board of South Central Arc Users Group (SCAUG) as a vendor coordinator. During his time at the Choctaw Nation Dustin has played a vital role in the development of the GIS office, and its ability to provide geospatial services to the tribe and its members. Under his leadership, the GIS department has grown to a staff of 5 full-time GIS personnel and supports 18 other GIS users throughout the tribe.

John-Michael Seibler, Heritage Foundation

John-Michael Seibler is a Legal Fellow in the Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies at the Heritage Foundation, in Washington, D.C. He directs The Heritage Foundation’s project to counter abuse of the criminal law, particularly at the federal level. This “overcriminalization” project is part of Heritage’s Rule of Law initiative.

James Grimsley, DII, LLC

James L Grimsley is President and CEO of DII, LLC - a family of leading edge advanced technology companies based in Oklahoma that focus on innovative technology for unmanned aerial systems (UAS) – also known as “drones”. Mr. Grimsley is also an Associate Vice President for Research at the University of Oklahoma – Norman Campus (OU).

Mr. Grimsley is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma with a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering and an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering. Prior to starting DII, Mr. Grimsley was a Division Chief Engineer and later an Assistant Vice President with Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC). Mr. Grimsley has been active in a variety of state organizations and initiatives. Mr. Grimsley organized the Unmanned Systems Alliance of Oklahoma (USA-OK) that is now a state chapter of the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) and served as founding president until 2014.

In 2016, Mr. Grimsley was appointed to the FAA’s Drone Advisory Committee Subcommittee (DACSC), and has been involved in task groups addressing governmental roles and responsibilities (federal, state, and local) as well as access to airspace issues.

AUVSI named Mr. Grimsley the “AUVSI Member of the Year” for 2014 in recognition of the state and national leadership for the UAS industry and for important advocacy work on behalf of the industry. Mr. Grimsley is one of the leading recognizable state and national figures in the UAS industry and is frequently interviewed in the international media (The Economist, Associated Press, Fortune, The Guardian Newspaper, CNBC, etc.).

Grayson Ardies, Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission

Grayson Ardies has been working for the Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission since August 2009. He started as an Aviation Program Manager conducting airport and pavement inspections at Oklahoma’s public-use, general aviation airports to provide each community with a foundation for the federal and state capital planning process.

In 2016 he became Manager of the Airport Development Division to oversee the development of the Commission’s Three-year Capital Improvement Program which directs approximately $25 million of federal, state, and local funding per year to Oklahoma’s general aviation airports. As head of the Division, he oversees program managers that conduct airport inspections, airspace zoning reviews in accordance with the State’s Aircraft Pilot and Passenger Protection Act, implement the state’s anemometer tower marking law, and provide assistance to airports with their development, operation, and technical documents. He currently serves as the agency’s UAS coordinator and as project manager for the recently released statewide aviation and aerospace economic impact study.

Grayson graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a degree in Aviation Management with double minors in Business Administration and Air Traffic Control. As part of his education at the aviation program he also received a commercial pilot’s license with single and multi-engine instrument ratings and is a certified flight instructor.




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