Speakers (2018)

David Adams, Senior Product Manager, PCTEL RF Solutions

David Adams

David Adams's career has focused on solutions for Service Quality and Performance Management of Mobile Networks. Working closely with the leading US mobile operators to understand their unique needs and requirements led to the creation of patented concepts and approaches. As solutions architect and product manager, he managed the design and deployment of a number of ground breaking solutions, continuing close cooperation with the operators to determine effective application of the solutions, thus driving high penetration rates of the solutions across the industry. Recent concentration has been on the Public Safety Networks, both legacy P25 and FirstNet LTE technologies. The critical nature of properly performing service to first responders means test solution in new and more rigorous requirements. A special focus is on in building coverage and performance, delivering a cost effective solution to ensure buildings comply with national and AHJ standards.


Chris Baker, Battalion Chief, Roseville CA Fire Department

David Adams

Chris Baker is a Battalion Chief with the Roseville CA Fire Department and IWCE advisory committee member. His assignments include support services, operations, homeland security, and public safety technology. He serves on incident management teams, including as Communications Unit Leader and COMT, and is a member of US Department of Homeland Security's ICTAP instructor cadre conducting exercises and communications-specific courses. Outside the public safety sector, Chris held positions as senior RF engineer and member of technical staff with a nationwide wireless carrier, test equipment manufacturer, and consulting engineer in public safety engineering, indoor wireless, and RF MPE safety analysis. Chris holds a BS in Electrical Engineering, Juris Doctor, and is a registered CA professional engineer and member of the State Bar of California.


Kenneth Bednasz, VP Application Engineering, Telit

Kenneth Bednasz

Kenneth Bednasz is the Vice President of Application Engineering for Telit and is responsible for the technical support and module certification for Telit's products. Ken has been with Telit since 2006 and has been instrumental in leading innovative product introductions with North American network operators.Ken has over 20 years of experience in the cellular industry. Prior to Telit, he worked for Sony Ericsson Mobile Communications and holds multiple patents and publications in the area of cellular communications. He earned a degree in electrical engineering from the Rochester Institute of Technology in New York.


Joe Blaschka, Principal, ADCOMM Engineering Company

Kenneth Bednasz

Mr. Blaschka is the Principal Engineer at ADCOMM Engineering Company. He has been a communications engineer since the early 1970's and has worked on hundreds of communications projects.


Robert Bloom, Public Safety Systems Administrator, Department of Emergency Communications, Alexandria, VA

Robert Bloom

Robert Bloom has been working in Public Safety for almost thirty years. His career started in a small county center in Pennsylvania. Bob has worked for a large metropolitan center, a medium size combined center, an airport and two vendors. During his career has seen the industry grow and become increasingly dependent on technology. From the evolution from 10-digit phones to multiple Phases of 911 to NG-911. As the Public Safety Systems Administrator, he leads a team in implementation, training, and support of 911 technologies and Quality Assurance. In addition to NG-911 components, ESInet, and FirstNET are among current projects. His industry educational accomplishments include NENA's Emergency Numbers Professional (ENP), Center Manager Certification Program (CMCP), APCO's Registered Public Safety Leader (RPL) and Certified Public Safety Executive (CPE). He serves as APCO's Chair for Professional Development Events Committee, Vice Chair of Cyber Security Training Writing Group, and a member of the Cyber Security Committee. He will also be Chair of APCO's 2019 Baltimore Conference Committee.


Jason Brennan, Product Manager, JVCKENWOOD USA Corp.

Kenneth Bednasz

Jason brings solid experience in wireless integration, two-way radio system design and deployment and field testing to the work of planning and defining new generations of KENWOOD two-way radio products. Jason attended Western Carolina University and has been with JVCKENWOOD USA for more than 7 years. He has extensive field experience as a technician and radio engineer in both business and public safety environments. As Product Manager, Jason works closely with KENWOOD authorized dealers and their end user customers to identify potential products and generate product specifications, and, he works with sales and marketing to generate plans for product introduction and marketing strategies.


David Buchanan, Spectrum Management Committee Chair, NPSTC

David Buchanan

Mr. Buchanan is a life member of the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials - International (APCO) and was Chairman of APCO's Spectrum Management Committee. He also serves as the Southern California Local Frequency Advisor for APCO. Mr. Buchanan is the Chairperson of the Southern California Region 5, 700 MHz Planning Committee. Mr. Buchanan served as President of the California Public-Safety Radio Association for 2002. David is serving as NPSTC's spectrum committee chairman and had lead several national efforts regarding Broadband requirements, governance, and operational needs.


Brian Buntz, Content Director, IoT Institute

Brian Buntz

Brian Buntz is Content Director of the IoT Institute. Brian has helped manage the content direction of the Internet of Things Institute since 2016. In 2017, the B2B social media firm Leadtail selected Brian as one of the most influential people (#14) for IoT leaders. Brian is a veteran journalist with more than ten years' experience covering an array of technologies including the Internet of Things, 3-D printing, and cybersecurity.


Chris Carver, PSAP Operations Director, NENA

Chris Carver

Christopher Carver (ENP) is NENA's Director of PSAP/9-1-1 Operations and a 23-year veteran of public safety communications and 9-1-1. In working for NENA, Chris is responsible for a myriad of projects, efforts and activities designed to improve and enhance the ability of the 9-1-1 system and PSAPs to handle the more than 240,000,000 calls for service that occur every year. Chris started his career as a Fire/EMS Dispatcher in Central Ohio. After graduating from the Ohio State University, he moved to New York City to work as a Dispatcher for the FDNY. Over the next 15 years, he rose through the ranks of the Department— serving as the Chief Dispatcher for incidents like Superstorm Sandy and the 2010 Blizzard —before reaching the rank of Director—Dispatch Operations, where he oversaw a staff of 200 and the processing of over 500,000 emergency incidents per year. Chris serves as a staff advisor to the NENA Education Advisory Board, co-chairs the CTIA Location Accuracy PSAP Implementation Group and belongs to numerous public safety associations. He is also an Adjunct-Faculty member at the John Jay College in New York, teaching a course on dispatching methodology. Chris has been published in several publications and has both keynoted and presented at conferences in the United States and abroad.


John T Chaney, IT Communications Manager, City of Irving IT Communications

John Chaney


Jeff Cohen, Chief Counsel, APCO International

Jeff Cohen

Jeffrey Cohen is Chief Counsel and Director of Government Relations at APCO International. In this capacity, Jeff provides strategic guidance on policy, legislative, and regulatory matters to advance the association's work on 9-1-1 and first responder communications. Prior to joining APCO, Jeff served as a detailee from the Federal Communications Commission, for the minority staff of the House of Representatives Energy and Commerce Committee. While on the Hill, Jeff was one of the authors of the FirstNet public safety legislation enacted in February 2012. At the FCC, Jeff served as Senior Legal Counsel to the Chief of the FCC's Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau. Before his move to the federal government, Jeff was a partner at the Washington, DC telecommunications law firm of Wilkinson Barker Knauer, LLP, where he worked over ten years on wireless regulatory matters since graduating from the George Washington University Law School with honors in 1994. Jeff also holds a B.S. cum laude in electrical engineering from the George Washington University. Jeff is a recipient of the FCC's Silver Medal Award, APCO's Leadership in Regulatory Service Award, and the National Emergency Number Association's Presidential Award.


Paul Denisowski, Applications Engineer, Rohde & Schwarz

Reinhard Ekl

Paul Denisowski is an Applications Engineer at Rohde & Schwarz, where he specializes in test and measurement solutions for network operators. He has over 25 years of experience in test and measurement and has previously worked in both field and R&D positions with HP/Agilent, Fujitsu, Alcatel, and Nortel. Paul holds a Master's degree in Electrical Engineering from North Carolina State University and was also a visiting lecturer at the Tokyo Institute of Technology.


Alison Diana, Editor, Broadband World News

Alison Diana

Alison has written about tech, business and diversity for more than 25 years for numerous publications, including her current role as editor of Light Reading's Broadband World News. A long-time editor and journalist, she headed her own business for 10 years before returning to the corporate world. Alison, who's originally from northern England, lives on Florida's Space Coast with her husband, daughter and two cats, where you may overhear her yelling for the Yankees.


Reinhard Ekl, Vice President of Product & Public Safety, RapidSOS

Reinhard Ekl

Reinhard Ekl is the VP of Product and Public Safety at RapidSOS, an emergency technology company founded out of MIT/Harvard with the mission of transforming emergency communications by bringing accurate caller location and comprehensive data to 9-1-1 and Public Safety. RapidSOS offers supplemental location information and additional data through the Next Generation 9-1-1 Clearinghouse – accessible by PSAPs at no cost through partnerships with most CPE/911 & CAD vendors. Mr. Ekl leads the 9-1-1 Outreach and Product Development for RapidSOS and participates in Standards Development with NENA & APCO. Mr. Ekl holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business with a Certificate in Social Innovation and is a certified EMT-Paramedic in Austria since 2006.


Robert Escalle, Vice President – Public Safety & Defense Market Segments, Sonim Technologies, Inc. 

Kenneth Bednasz

Robert Escalle serves as Sonim’s Vice President responsible for the Public Safety and Defense market segments. Robert has overseen Sonim’s expansion and continued leadership in these focused verticals. Before joining Sonim, Mr. Escalle served as Director of Product Management at Motorola Solutions, where he focused on managing the broadband device product portfolio. Before joining Motorola Solutions, Mr. Escalle held various senior level positions in both product and business management focusing on wired, wireless, and semiconductor market segments within the telecommunications industry for AT&T, Cassidian Communications, QuantM Voice, Lucent Technologies, Texas Instruments, and Globespan Semiconductor. 


John Foley, General Manager, Safer Buildings Coalition

John Foley

John has held key business development, operations, engineering, and executive roles at telecom service companies such as Level 3 Communications, MFS, and MCI. John was a co-founder of XO Communications where he was VP of Operations and Engineering, and later VP of International Network Development. John led dark fiber provider City Signal Communications in the position of President and CEO. John most recently served as Capture Director for specialty construction firm Henkels and McCoy, a leading DAS Integrator. John also spent several years in television and video production services with PMTV, developing and managing complex video production projects including NCAA sports and corporate simulcasts and broadcasts. John came aboard the Safer Buildings Coalition in April of 2017, with a focus on serving the SBC mission, solidifying member services and value, and establishing a strong operational and financial base as tools to meet the business demands of SBC's mission. John comes from a family with a tradition of first-responder service, with his grandfather, great uncle, brother, and son all serving in the Philadelphia Police department.


Josh Hearan, Deputy Sheriff, Brazos County Sheriff's Office

Josh Hearan

Josh Hearen is a Sergeant with the Brazos County Office of the Sheriff currently assigned to the Warrants and Civil Division of the Office. Josh has been employed with the Sheriff's Office for 20 years. He has worked in many different areas of the office including Jail operations, Dispatch services and Training. Josh was closely involved in bringing the original "Band 14" project to Brazos County. He worked diligently with Harris County, an early builder, to bring the project on line. He was awarded the Sheriff's Office Meritorious Service award for his involvement in the project. Josh has also worked on projects surrounding in-car and body worn video as well as Land Mobile Radio projects. He works closely with vendors to test and evaluate new products and applications associated with mobile video. Additionally, Josh works to support several non-profit groups outside of the office, furthering the mission of the Sheriff's Office by providing further support to our local community.


Dan Henry, Director of Government Affairs, NENA

Dan Henry

Mr. Henry brings nearly a decade of experience in telecommunications policy and law to NENA. Most recently, he worked as Policy Counsel at the Telecommunications Industry Association. Mr. Henry earned his undergraduate degree in Civil Engineering from Ohio Northern University and his Juris Doctor from the University of Colorado-Boulder. Before TIA, Henry worked for Booz Allen Hamilton with the Department of Homeland Security's Office of Emergency Communications (DHS OEC) and at ACT | The App Association and Wilkinson Barker Knauer, LLP.


Roger Hixson, ENP, Technical Issues Director, National Emergency Number Association (NENA)

Roger Hixson

Roger Hixson, ENP, is the Technical Issues Director of the National Emergency Number Association, coordinates NENA's overall technical development process, and is closely involved in many of NENA's activities, including wireless 9-1-1, Internet Protocol technical and strategy issues, national 9-1-1 Text, and coordinates the overall NENA NG9-1-1 Project plan. He has worked in various areas of 9-1-1 service for 32 years, formerly in the telecommunications environment, where he and his group implemented and provided service management of E9-1-1 systems in more than 35 major Counties in Ohio, Michigan and Indiana. Roger has chaired numerous 9-1-1 advancement efforts, at the state, national, and corporate levels, and received the NPSTC (National Public Safety Telecommunications Council) Lifetime Achievement Award, and the 9-1-1 Institute Industry Award. Roger holds a Systems Engineering degree.


Ken Hosac, Vice President, IoT Strategy & Business Development, Cradlepoint

Ken Hosac

At Cradlepoint, Ken is responsible for defining the company's IoT strategy and for driving strategic industry partnerships to accelerate the company's market growth and leadership. As part of the leadership team since 2009, Ken has helped drive Cradlepoint's growth and development through roles in strategic planning, product management, solution strategy and thought leadership. Ken frequently represents the company at industry conferences and events, and served on the original Advisory Board for the IoT/M2M Evolution Magazine. Ken has 30 years of experience in marketing, sales, R&D and manufacturing. Prior to joining Cradlepoint, Ken served as VP of Marketing for Casabyte (later acquired by JDS Uniphase), the leading provider of service validation solutions to wireless service providers. Ken also served as VP of Business Development for GoAhead Software (later acquired by Oracle), the leading provider of high availability software to communication infrastructure providers. Ken earlier spent 10 years at Hewlett Packard in a variety of engineering and engineering management roles for networking equipment and personal computers. Ken holds a B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering and an M.S. degree in Manufacturing Engineering, both from Stanford University.


Donny Jackson, Editor, IWCE's Urgent Communications

Donny Jackson

Donny Jackson is editor of IWCE's Urgent Communications magazine. Before joining in 2002, he covered telecommunications for four years as a freelance writer and as news editor for Telephony magazine. Prior to that, he worked for suburban newspapers in the Dallas area, serving as editor-in-chief for the Irving News and the Las Colinas Business News.


Rajit Jhaver, Director of Operations, Federal Engineering

Rajit Jhaver is responsible for providing consulting services for public safety mission critical voice communications to state and local government customers. His eighteen years of experience has included designing and implementing communications systems for a major radio vendor as well as independent consultant. His roles include assessing current communications infrastructure and local needs, developing system requirements, and providing design alternatives including cost-benefit analyses for each. He has also developed request for proposals for his clients and provided vendor implementation oversight.

Rajit has in depth experience in APCO P25 interoperability standards and design as well as all phases of land mobile radio systems engineering. Mr. Jhaver is also able to analyze cost/benefits, complete economic analysis for systems and provide strategic planning for radio administrators.


Alison Kahn, Electronics Engineer, Public Safety Communications Research, National Institute of Standards and Technology – NIST | CTL

Alison Kahn

Alison Kahn is an Electronics Engineer with NIST's Public Safety Communications Research (PSCR) division in Boulder, Colorado. PSCR works to drive innovation and advance public safety communication technologies through cutting-edge Research and Development (R&D). Alison is currently the project lead for First Responder Personal Area Network research, sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security. This project is working to identify and address barriers in the assimilation and utilization of IoT data during first responder field operations. Alison has 14 years of experience in the telecommunications industry. Before joining PSCR in 2016, she worked on end to end device interoperability programs for cellular network equipment manufacturers. She also worked with commercial wireless carriers to develop and implement customized test plans used to ensure that device vendors could meet both customer required and industry standard interoperability with cellular network equipment.


TJ Kennedy, Founder, The Public Safety Network, LLC

TJ Kennedy

TJ Kennedy is one of the co-founders and principals of the Public Safety Network. TJ has had a 25-year career in wireless technology and public safety. Prior to the Public Safety Network, TJ was the President of the First Responder Network Authority, known as FirstNet, an independent government authority charged with creating the first ever financially self-sustaining broadband nationwide network for public safety. TJ led FirstNet from a start-up inside the United States government to become a $40 billion public-private partnership (PPP) that is deploying a mission critical 4G LTE network in all 50 US states, 5 territories, and the District of Columbia. This PPP is the largest ever in the United States and is now providing priority public safety communications to law enforcement, fire, and emergency medical services personnel. Prior to joining FirstNet, TJ was the President of Raytheon JPS Communications and led the Public Safety business at Raytheon. TJ has created the new communications platform that will drive public safety technologies for many years to come. Countries around the world are learning from the FirstNet model and are looking to emulate its success. Technology companies seek TJ's advice on how they can benefit from the Internet of Life Saving Things (IoLST) and how to encourage public safety to embrace technology to improve the ways they respond, interact, and serve the public in its greatest time of need. As a reliable and dedicated general manager, TJ has defined and achieved organizational excellence and created complex business strategies that have achieved incredible results while working in a political environment with diverse stakeholders.TJ received his B.S. from the University of Utah and his M.B.A. from Johns Hopkins University.


Chris Kindelspire, LMR to LTE Working Group Chair, NPSTC

Chris Kindelspire

I am a twenty-five-year member of the fire service. In 1996, I was given the lead to address communications issues for fire, EMS and law enforcement. In 2004 my career migrated to a full-time position with the Grundy County ETSB as Director Electronic Ops. With the ETSB, my responsibilities include the operation, maintenance and troubleshooting of LMR systems, 911, microwave, power systems, tower sites and our consolidated dispatch facility. I am a State of Illinois Type II COML and COMT, Chairman of both Region 54 700 and 800Mhz Regional Planning Committees, one of two Local APCO Frequency Advisors for Illinois, participate on multiple NPSTC working groups ranging from public safety video, Public Safety Grade, Mission Critical Push to Talk over LTE, LTE Deployables, LTE Local Control, current chairman of the LMR-LTE Migration Committee and member of the DHS P25 CAP AP. Member of the Illinois' State Interoperability Executive Committee serving as chair of the Governance Sub-Committee. I have had the pleasure of being an invitational speaker nationally as wells as internationally on a variety of topics.


Robert LeGrande

Robert LeGrande II, Founder and CEO, The Digital Decision LLC

Formerly Chief Technology Officer for the District of Columbia government, Mr. LeGrande led the District's Land Mobile Radio (LMR) network upgrade and as a result the District of Columbia and National Capitol Region received the highest interoperability ratings offered by the Department of Homeland Security. In addition, Mr LeGrande led the development of the nation's first two city-wide public safety 700MHz wireless networks. These networks were considered models for the nation and served as a test bed for how applications can be shared securely among public safety agencies and provided insight to key requirements and operational issues regarding PS broadband technology. Mr. LeGrande resigned from the District of Columbia in 2007 and formed The Digital Decision, LLC. His firm is leveraging lessons learned in the District to deliver State and Local Public Safety 700MHz LTE network planning services. Services offered include, business modelling, requirements gathering, governance, MOA/MOU development, outreach and training, technical design, mobile App development, systems integration, as well as opt-in/opt-out decision planning. He also continued to support public safety communications in the development of national 700 MHz broadband networks. In 2008 he appeared at the United States House of Representatives Committee on Homeland Security's hearing on "Interoperability in the Next Administration: Assessing the Derailed 700MHz D-Block Public Safety Spectrum Auction". More recently he represented the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials International at the FCC's "Technical Panel on 700 MHz Nationwide Interoperable Public Safety Wireless Broadband Network". Here he successfully debated the pros and cons of the public safety sections on the FCC's National Broadband Plan.


Ray Lehr, Senior SME, Lafayette Group

Ray Lehr

Ray served as the Maryland Statewide Interoperability Director, where he directed a PMO, which was responsible for projects to improve public safety communications including a Statewide 700 MHz Land Mobile Radio (LMR) project. He spent 10 years working for systems integrators on public safety projects. He is a Six Sigma Brown Belt and ITIL v3 certified in program management.


Curtis Levinson, Chief Information Security Officer, MetTel

Curtis Levinson

Dr. Levinson has over 25 years of focused experience in Cyber Security and Information Assurance. He is a highly experienced advisor, risk assessor and technology architect specializing in all phases of the security engineering process including regulatory compliance, policy formulation, cyber attribution and forensics, risk analysis, network/system hardening and resilience, implementation, testing, certification and accreditation, operations, training and managing the security of information and telecommunications systems in a wide variety of environments. Dr. Levinson is a frequent consultant, author and lecturer, within the United States and internationally, on a variety of topics related to secure technology, telecommunications, regulatory compliance, counter-terrorism and homeland security. He is an adjunct lecturer for many graduate programs in cyber security and counter-terrorism and a member of the Capitol Technology University Board of Trustees.


Dr. Fidel Liberal, University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU), and Project Leader, Mission Critical Open Platform (MCOP) 

Fidel Libera

Dr. Fidel Liberal is a well-recognized expert in Mission Critical communications and NG112/NG-9-1-1 systems. He currently works in the University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU) where he leads different R&D projects related to mission critical communications and 5G. He has also been involved with relevant stakeholders in the sector such as TCCA, EENA, PSCE and standardization bodies such as ETSI, 3GPP and ITU-T and has co-authored more than 75 international journal and conference papers. He has also co-founded two start-ups. Recently he has focused on pushing open and standardized mission critical ecosystems in his role as coordinator of the Mission Critical Open Platform (MCOP) www.mcopenplatform.org project.


Josh Lober, President and CEO, ESchat

Josh Lober

Prior to founding SLA in 1991, Mr. Lober held positions at 3dbm, Inc. and Gould Electronics where he worked on military RADAR systems. He also worked at Biocom, Inc., where he worked on the company's orange "paramedic radio" made famous in the TV show Emergency. During the pre-rfp and pre-award phases, FirstNet had declared a data first, Mission Critical voice later model. In the post-award era, FirstNet's mission has changed to onboarding subscribers. Therefore, the initial rollout will include indiscriminate Priority and Preemption that will benefit all applications, including Over the Top PTT. First Responders will have the option to choose FirstNet or third-party PTT vendors. Are we at the forefront of next-generation LMR/LTE interoperability, or are we creating the next-generation of interoperability problems? Mr. Lober is President/CEO of SLA Corporation, the parent company of ESChat. Since its foundation in 1991, SLA has developed numerous wireless solutions for Government, Commercial and Military applications. SLA's Commercial wireless history includes 1G thru 4G network infrastructure, specifically AMPS, ETACS, IS-136, CDMA 1xEVDO (Rev. 0 and Rel. A) and LTE. SLA developed its first Push to Talk over Cellular (PTToC) solution in 2003 using the "iTalk" and "PoC" standards. SLA's team opted to create a more efficient PTToC protocol which became Enterprise Secure Chat (ESChat), today's leading secure LTE PTToC solution for military, public safety and large business use. Prior to founding SLA in 1991, Mr. Lober held positions at 3dbm, Inc. and Gould Electronics where he worked on military RADAR systems. He also worked at Biocom, Inc., where he worked on the company's orange "paramedic radio" made famous in the TV show Emergency. Mr. Lober holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Science from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo.


John Locatelli, Manager of Product Management, Avtec, Inc

John Locatelli

John Locatelli is the Manager of Product Management for Avtec, Inc, the leading provider of mission critical systems in North America. Locatelli's key responsibilities include developing and implementing the product plan for Avtec's Scout Suite of console systems. Locatelli brings 25 years of product development, product management, and software engineering experience to Avtec. He has experience in LMR with the development and deployment of critical communication systems including P25 Trunked Systems, P25 Linear Simulcast Systems, and P25 Software Defined Radios.


Barry Luke, Deputy Executive Director, NPSTC

Barry Luke

Barry Luke is the Deputy Executive Director of the National Public Safety Telecommunications Council (NPSTC). Chief Luke retired from the Orange County (FL) Fire Rescue Department after serving as a Division Chief and Deputy Chief. He is known for his excellent interpersonal skills and is nationally recognized as a speaker and presenter on public safety communications issues.


Lisa Madden, VP, NG911 and FirstNet, Winbourne Consulting, LLC and iCERT

Lisa Madden

Ms. Madden has 20+ years' experience with E-9-1-1 and NG9-1-1 products, systems, and operations. She manages Winbourne Consulting's NG9-1-1 and FirstNet business area providing business development and project oversight. She is directly involved in all our NG9-1-1 projects and actively involved in Call Center Efficiency solutions for our regional Emergency Call Center customers. Ms. Madden is also actively involved as the iCERT representative, in the NG911 NOW Coalition, committed to the accelerated deployment of NG911.


Michael Manning, Senior Consultant, Federal Engineering, Inc.

Michael Manning

Mike is a retired Vermont State Police Lieutenant with over thirty years of law enforcement experience where he served in a variety of field, training and leadership roles. While serving as Vermont's Homeland Security Section Chief, Mike began working as a project and programmatic manager. After retirement, he became a Senior Consultant, currently working for Federal Engineering, and a project manager. Mike's current focus is on communications projects, and assisting first responders and stakeholders with their operable and interoperable communications planning.


Michael Marusich, Senior Consultant, M3 Technical Services

Michael Marusich

Michael Marusich is a Senior Consultant and Program / Project Manager serving the information technology, telecommunications and public safety industries. Mr. Marusich has over 25 years experience in the private and public sector, most recently serving for 12 years as a Senior Program Manager in the State of Washington's Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO). There he served as Washington's 800 MHz Rebanding Project Manager; staff to the State Interoperability Executive Committee (SIEC); and, chaired the SIEC Advisory Workgroup (SAW). Marusich also served as the State's Deputy Statewide Interoperability Coordinator (SWIC) and Technical Lead on the Washington OneNet (WON) program. Marusich is a member of the Washington Association of Public Safety Communications Officials International/National Emergency Number Association (WA-APCO/NENA) and has over 25-years' experience in the public and private sector. He has served as an Interim Director for Information Technologies and Communications/E-911 Director for a WA municipality, Sr. Technical Consultant to the public safety community, as well as Product/Project Manager for several public safety equipment and system manufacturers. He has also served on national public safety advisory and working committees for APCO, NENA, and the former Public Safety Wireless Network (PSWN). He has presented whitepapers and served as a speaker/panelist at conferences relative to public safety technologies and project management best practices. Marusich holds a certificate in Marketing Excellence from the University of Wisconsin – Madison, a certificate in Industrial Electronics from El Paso Vocational/Technical College, and is a Project Management Institute (PMI) certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and Certified Scrum Master (CSM).


Harlin McEwen, Honorary President, International Association of Chiefs of Police

Harlin McEwan

Chief McEwen served on the Steering Committee of the Public Safety Wireless Advisory Committee (PSWAC) and as a member of the Steering Committee of the FCC Public Safety National Coordinating Committee (NCC). In November 2000, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, at their Annual Conference in San Diego honored Chief McEwen by presenting him with the first IACP Lone Star Distinguished Award in recognition of his exemplary service to the IACP for over 22 years as Chairman of the IACP Communications & Technology Committee. He is a Life Member and Honorary President of the International Association of Chiefs of Police. He is also a Life Member of the New York State Association of Chiefs of Police, the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials-International (APCO), and the National Sheriffs' Association. He is a Fellow in the Radio Club of America (RCA) and in 2006 was honored by being named the first recipient of the RCA/NPSTC Richard DeMello Award for his many contributions to public safety communications. In 2007, Chief McEwen was elected Chairman of the Public Safety Spectrum Trust (PSST), a not-for-profit corporation consisting of representatives of fifteen national public safety organizations who began the effort to obtain the 700 MHz Public Safety Broadband License (PSBL) for public safety which is now held by FirstNet. Chief McEwen is the former Chairman of the Public Safety Advisory Committee of FirstNet.


Patrick McNerney, Chief Operating Officer, 3D Design & Engineering, Inc.

Patrick McNerney

Patrick McNerney is the Chief Operating Officer of 3D Design & Engineering which provides civil, structural, geotechnical, and mechanical engineering services specialized to meet the unique needs of the telecommunications industry. For over a decade Mr. McNerney has been at the forefront of innovation in design specifically regarding telecommunications including Virtual Site Tours, 3D Laser Site Scanning, 3D PDF presentations, and more. 3D Design & Engineering was the first firm in Texas to incorporate 3D design with semi-autonomous heavy machinery for lake projects and one of the few engineering firms in Houston offering 3D laser scanning, photogrammetry, and virtual site tours. 3D Design & Engineering is also specialized in the three-dimensional conception and elaborated engineering applied for the design and analysis of various structures. Mr. McNerney has a degree specializing in applied engineering technology and holds multiple design certifications including: Autodesk Certified Professional, AVEVA Plant Design Management Systems, and NTT Fiber Optics, as well as being a commercially licensed FAA UAS Pilot (Drone Pilot).In his free time Mr. McNerney works as a volunteer for the Texas Wireless Association which 3D Design & Engineering is a member of and actively seeks partnerships with organizations that place an emphasis on quality, safety, and innovation. Mr. McNerney also enjoys volunteering at events that are committed to enriching the community in Houston, Texas where 3D Design & Engineering is based.


Kelli Merriweather, Vice President/Treasurer, National Association of State 911 Administrators, and Director, Texas Council on State Emergency Communications

Kelli Merriweather

Ed Mills, Public Safety Engagement & Technology Innovation Manager, Colorado Governor's Office of Information Technology

Ed Mills

Ed is the Colorado Outreach Manager in the Colorado Governor's Office of Information Technology. He and his team are responsible for coordinating state efforts for NPSBN. He is volunteer firefighter, and EMR with Evergreen Fire Rescue. He was an MP in the United States Army for 6 years.


Mike Newburn

Mike Newburn, Wireless and Radio Solutions Manager, Fairfax County, Virginia

Mike Newburn is the Wireless and Radio Solutions Manager and is the senior technical and wireless communications policy expert for Fairfax County, Virginia. He has over 30 years' experience in the wireless and 9-1-1 industry in both private and government sectors. He recently introduced an out of the box wireless strategy for Fairfax County, migrating his non-public safety radio users over to commercially available broadband push to talk service resulting in more than a $16 million savings for Fairfax County. His plan also incorporated RoIP, CSSI and ISSI interoperability interfaces between the Fairfax County P25 public safety radio network and LTE network,expanding the interoperability capabilities for his first responders.


Steve Nichols, Director, Project 25 Technology Industry Group

Steve Nichols

Stephen (Steve) Nichols is the Director of the Project 25 Technology Interest Group (PTIG). PTIG is a not for profit organization dedicated to the promotion and application of the Project 25 (P25) digital radio Standard for Land Mobile Radio technology. He has more than 30 years of experience in the Land Mobile and Public Safety Radio Industries in various business development positions.


Bob Plaschke, President & Chief Executive Officer, Sonim Technologies

Bob Plaschke

Since 2004, Bob Plaschke has served as Sonim's President and Chief Executive Officer. Before joining Sonim, Mr. Plaschke served as entrepreneur-in-residence at Sutter Hill Ventures, where he focused on wireless investments. Before joining Sutter Hill, Mr. Plaschke was Senior Vice President of worldwide client services at Info space and as Chief Financial Officer and Vice President for Business Development at Prio, a wireless and wireline promotion infrastructure company that was later acquired by Infospace. While at Prio, Mr. Plaschke oversaw the implementation of wireless data solutions across the company's carriers. Mr. Plaschke started his career at Arthur Andersen, moving to McKinsey and Company after completing business school. Mr. Plaschke spent more than four years at McKinsey, most of that in Amsterdam. Mr. Plaschke received a B.S. in computer engineering from Northwestern University and an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago.


Kevin Persing, Western Regional Manager, Cobham Wireless

Kevin Persing

Kevin Persing is the Western Regional Manager for Cobham Wireless. Mr. Persing has developed a keen understanding of the recent changes to Fire code that in many States now require testing of, and when needed, installation of radio communications signal enhancement to support public safety radio systems. He has given training sessions at the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) – Boston 2012 and Regional Association of Public Safety Communications Officials (APCO) for State and Local Fire conferences on an ongoing basis.

Kevin understands that there needs to be a collaborative effort by both the AHJ and the Radio Communications stakeholders in each city to properly enforce the new fire codes, his training has helped both the AHJ and Communications officials in the development of a workable standard for use in their local enforcement.


Beau Sands, IT Manager, Communications Center and Mobile Technology Support Team, American Medical Response

Beau Sands

Beau Sands is currently an IT Manager for American Medical response. Beau has worked in the RF field for 25 years and is now designing radio systems for AMR. Beau has been with AMR for 12 years in an IT Management capacity.


Thomas Sawanobori, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, CTIA

Thomas Sawanobori

Thomas (Tom) Sawanobori is CTIA's Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer. He is responsible for technology and technical matters concerning spectrum, network evolution, cybersecurity and device certification to benefit CTIA's members and to serve as a technical resource to policymakers. He has 22 years of technology planning, network engineering and operational experience for Verizon, including lead planner for Verizon Wireless' 4G LTE network. He was Vice President of Network Planning at Verizon, where he was responsible for technology planning and capital budget management. He led the technology evolution of the network including spectrum planning, 3G/4G technology, LTE and LTE-Advanced, and core network evolution. In addition to his career at Verizon, Mr. Sawanobori worked at Hughes Electronics on Navy Communications and Combat Systems. He served 5 years in the US Navy as a Submarine Warfare Officer and went on to complete 20 years total, retiring as a Commander in the Naval Reserve. Mr. Sawanobori holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Duke University and a Master of Engineering from California State University-Fullerton.


Brian Scarpelli, Senior Policy Counsel, ACT | The App Association

Brian Scarpelli

Brian Scarpelli is Senior Policy Counsel at ACT | The App Association, where he works to advance the interests of the app developer community across a diversity of legal and policy issues impacting app development companies as they seek to leverage the global digital economy, including public safety, intellectual property, privacy, cybersecurity, disability access, and connected health.


Bill Schrier, Senior Advisor, FirstNet

Bill Schrier

Bill Schrier is a senior advisor with FirstNet. His former positions include Chief Information Officer for the Seattle Police Department, Chief Technology Officer for the City of Seattle and FirstNet State Point of Contact for the State of Washington.


Ashley Schultz, Grants Development Consultant, Grants Office, LLC

Ashley Schultz

Ashley Schultz works as a Grants Development Consultant at Grants Office, a national grants development services firm. In that role, Ms. Schultz provides support to state & local governments in their pursuit of grant funding for public safety, transportation & community development projects.


Andrew Seybold, CEO and Principal Analyst, Andrew Seybold, Inc.

Andy Seybold

Andrew M. Seybold, CEO and Principal Analyst of Andrew Seybold, Inc., is one of the most respected and influential analysts in the wireless industry today. For more than twenty-five years, he has served the industry and shaped initiatives for world leaders of the wireless industry, including Verizon, Nokia, AT&T, Motorola, and Qualcomm. His firm has provided wireless consulting and education services for startups to Fortune 1000 companies such as Dow Chemical, Ford Motor Company, and Microsoft. Andrew Seybold has consulted to some of the industry's most talented and successful entrepreneurs. He was a key consultant to a number of companies that introduced products and services that have had a significant impact on wireless including Research In Motion's popular BlackBerry, Hewlett-Packard's first handheld device, first two-way pager, Good Technologies' first products, and AT&T's push-to-talk offering. He also introduced RadioMail to Dell for the first-ever notebook wireless email offering. He has served on the Motorola Research Visionary Board, IBM's Mobile Computing Advisory Board, and a number of other prestigious advisory boards. Mr. Seybold is a Fellow in the Radio Club of America in recognition of his contributions to the wireless industry, he co-founded and served as a board member of the Personal Computing and Communications Association (PCCA), and he currently serves on the board of CommNexus San Diego. Andrew Seybold's Outlook for Mobile Computing newsletter and his Andrew Seybold/Forbes Wireless Outlook newsletter were must-reads and today his COMMENTARY and PUBLIC SAFETY ADVOCATE are arguably the most widely read e-newsletter among executives of leading wireless network operators. He co-founded Andrew Seybold Wireless University in 1995, which has been attended by thousands of industry professionals and continues to be the only in-depth educational program of its kind in the wireless industry. As a trusted authority on wireless technology and business issues, Mr. Seybold has been featured in the Wall Street Journal. He is the author of Using Wireless Communications in Business and several other books, and contributes regularly to Mobile Enterprise Magazine, FierceWireless and FierceContent, and Wireless Week. Andrew Seybold is among the wireless industry's foremost speakers and is recognized worldwide for his keen perspective and track record for accurately predicting trends in mobile technology and convergence and is a featured speaker at major industry and customer events and conferences.


Dean Skidmore, Vice Chair, PS IoT Workgroup, NPSTC

Dean Skidmore

Dean is the Founder and Principal Consultant of the IoT+LTE Consulting Group. Dean Skidmore is also the Vice Chair of NPSTC's Public Safety Internet of Things Working Group and has been involved in the emergency communications field for over 30 years. Dean has advanced knowledge in LTE network design, LMR system configuration, and IOT device and sensor deployment. He works with the Global Cities Team Challenge (GCTC) program which focuses on IOT use by Smart Cities.


J. Sharpe Smith, Senior Editor/eDigest, AGL Media Group

J. Sharpe Smith

J. Sharpe Smith joined AGL in 2007 as contributing editor to the magazine and eventually became editor of eDigest email newsletter. He has 29 years of experience writing about industrial communications, paging, cellular, small cells, DAS and towers. Previously, he worked for the Enterprise Wireless Alliance as editor of the Enterprise Wireless Magazine. Before that, he edited the Wireless Journal for CTIA and he began his wireless journalism career with Phillips Publishing, now Access Intelligence.


Brad Stoddard, Director, Michigan's Public Safety Communications System (MPSCS)/SWIC, State of Michigan

Brad Stoddard

Brad Stoddard has been with the State of Michigan over 20 years with various leadership and Director roles of Public Safety Services and Information Technology for the Michigan State Police, Michigan Department of Military and Veterans Affairs, Michigan Department of Transportation, and with Michigan’s Public Safety Communications System (MPSCS).  Brad has been past chair and vice chair of APCOs Broadband Committee, is Vice Chair of FEMA Region 5 Regional Emergency Communications Coordination Working Group (RECCWG), is Vice Chair of the Michigan State Interoperable Governing Board, NPSTC governing board member, P25 steering committee member and participates in various other national, regional, and statewide working groups focused on public safety technologies and communications. Brad has been at the forefront of the nationwide public safety broadband wireless network and a recognized speaker on public safety communications and applications, and application security.  Brad is the Statewide Interoperability Coordinator (SWIC) for MI, is involved in many national workgroups and organizations and has advised National Governor’s Association on public safety communications planning across the nation. Brad holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from Colorado Tech. Prior to joining the State of Michigan, Brad’s background included research and development work with the Department of Defense with Space and Defense companies.  


Sagi Subocki, Vice President, Products and Marketing, Softil

Sagi Subocki

Sagi Subocki is VP Products and Marketing of Softil. He specializes in Mobile Communication, Video over IP and Internet of Things, and leads the Company's pioneering product strategy in Mission Critical Communications over LTE and 5G, IMS/VoLTE and WebRTC video communication solutions. Subocki is a frequent speaker at IP communication industry events and conferences, webinars and seminars covering his specialist areas. Prior to joining Softil, he held several key positions in marketing, product management and R&D with industry leaders. Subocki holds a BSc in Computer Science and Economics and is a MBA Marketing Major.


Alan Tilles, Partner, Shulman Rogers Gandal Pordy & Ecker, P.A.

Alan Tilles

Alan Tilles is Chairman of the Shulman Rogers Telecommunications Department, Chairman of the Firm's Cybersecurity Practice Group and a member of the Firm's Board of Directors. He is counsel to numerous entities in the private radio, internet industries. Mr. Tilles has participated in every FCC proceeding involving the private land mobile radio industry since 1984. In addition, he represents hundreds of public safety agencies (States, Counties and Cities), transit systems, Specialized Mobile Radio (SMR) operators, private system users (including major airlines and utilities), tower owners and radio manufacturers.


Chief Charles L. Werner (Ret.), Chair, National Council on Public Safety UAS & Association of American Railroads Public Safety Advisory Committee

Charles Werner

Chief Werner is a 44 year public safety veteran. He served 37 years with the Charlottesville, VA Fire Department and served as fire chief for ten years until retiring in 2015. Chief Werner is now serving as Acting Deputy State Coordinator and Senior Advisor for the Virginia Department of Emergency Management. He serves on the Board of the National Alliance of Public Safety GIS, the IAFC Technology Council, chair of the NFPA Technical Committee on UAS, CSX Rail Respond Steering Committee, the Association of American Railroads Public Safety Rail Advisory Committee, NPSTC UAS Working Group.


Wayne Wong, Product Manger, Anritsu Company

Wayne Wong

Wayne Wong is the Product Manager of the LMR Master S412E product at Anritsu Company. He has held various roles from Senior Hardware Design Engineer to Field Applications Engineer during his 20+ years in the Test and Measurement industry. Wayne earned his EE degree from San Jose State University.