The Commercial Drone Alliance, a non-profit education and advocacy group founded earlier this year and led by key players in the industry, has announced it’s leadership.
The roster is impressive, and speaks to the urgency that business leaders feel to work together to support the burgeoning commercial drone industry. The Alliance hopes to support commercial enterprise end users, helping them to adopt drone technology and address issues of public perception and regulation.
Michael Latiner, chief strategy officer at Uplift Data Partners was elected Chairman. Brandon Torres Declet, chief executive officer at Measure, is now President of the Alliance’s Board. Craig Marcinkowski, director of Strategy and Business Development at Gryphon Sensors, will serve as the Alliance’s Secretary and Treasurer. The rest of the board includes DataWing, CybAero and the new addition of X (formerly Google X, the division of Google involved with the development of drone technology.)
The Commercial Drone Alliance “focuses on a mix of public and policymaker education; connecting policymakers and innovators to accelerate the realization of drone benefits to industry; and promoting best practices for drone operations that ensure the privacy, security and safety of the public,” says the Alliance statement. The board’s agenda indicates that it will address issues of education and advocacy, including the push to legalize BVLOS (beyond visual line of sight) flight, night flight and flight over people.
“Uplift Data Partners is excited to be a part of the Commercial Drone Alliance and to take a proactive role in leading the effort,” said Michael Latiner, chief strategy officer, Uplift Data Partners in a statement. “We have created a robust agenda to enhance commercial drone operations and we look forward to working with the end-user community on these important initiatives.”
The Commercial Drone Alliance is co-led by industry veterans, Gretchen West and Lisa Ellman, both of Hogan Lovells LLP, a global law firm. Both Gretchen and Lisa are also co-founders of the Women of Commercial Drones organization, a nationwide effort to encourage women to become involved in this market and to mentor women to become leaders in technology.
“We are thrilled with the leadership of the Commercial Drone Alliance and are eager to move forward as we tackle the many challenges facing the drone industry,” Lisa Ellman tells DRONELIFE. “We are at a critical time with Part 107 now in effect, and our members are very excited to get started.”
Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, a professional drone services marketplace, and a fascinated observer of the emerging drone industry and the regulatory environment for drones. Miriam has a degree from the University of Chicago and over 20 years of experience in high tech sales and marketing for new technologies.