Chairman of the Board
Mark ArujaChairman of the Board
Mark Aruja has diverse experience in defence, government, industry and the not-for-profit sector spanning over 40 years, characterized by leading change. His boyhood dreams of flying were fulfilled with a 32 year aviation career in the Canadian Armed Forces ending with a number of senior appointments including Wing Commander. His first transformational change opportunity came early in his military career during the Cold War, in the arcane business of underwater acoustics, being part of a core team who dramatically changed the Canadian Navy’s approach to underwater warfare. Over the years, leadership on change initiatives varied, including laying the framework for dramatic reductions in air force personnel in the mid-1990s, creating the operational and political context for the Baltic Air Surveillance system and the NATO Baltic Air Policing mission, shortly after the collapse of the Soviet Union. He created a number of defence space projects, including what would become Canada’s first operational defence space satellite, Sapphire. Mark closed his career by being selected to be the first Commandant of the Canadian Forces Experimentation Centre where he established the first experimentation program with UAVs, and the start of his engagement with Unmanned Systems Canada.
Mark leveraged his operational and procurement experience in defence during 12 years as a Business Development Manager with Thales, a multinational company in the defence, aerospace and security sectors. He delivered numerous programs crossing a range of technologies to the Canadian Forces and other government customers including the first fleet of UAVs procured by the CF. He also contributed to the government’s review of defence procurement with inputs to key decision papers known as the Jenkins and Emerson reports.
Mr. Aruja’s first participation with USC was in 2003 at the inaugural annual conference, participating as an industrialist. He viewed this association as an invaluable vehicle to bring together the diverse parties necessary to create and realize transformational change opportunities. When he was voted to the Board, he championed the strategic focus of the association on civil and commercial UAS opportunities, now being realized in dramatic fashion. While there is much to be done in this sector, the next true leap for Canadian society promises to be in automated vehicles, where a new leadership team and network will need to be created.
Mark is an engineering graduate of the Royal Military College and has taken numerous courses over the years in aerospace systems, international security and in business management.
Michael CohenVice Chair - Strategy
Michael is a former Airline Captain (Boeing 737 NG) and holds a Master Degree in Aeronautical Sciences from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He has served as Chairman of Air Safety (Air Line Pilots Association: CJA), and as a member of the Air Canada Emergency Response Team. Michael is active Board Member of Unmanned Systems Canada.
After leading Industrial SkyWorks to nation-wide UAS flight approvals within Canada (2013-14), Michael authored the first Nighttime Commercial UAS approval (2016) issued by the Federal Aviation Administration (USA). In 2016, Michael was named as an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Finalist, and in 2017, named by Commercial UAV News as one of The 25 Most Influential People in the Drone Industry.
Jordan CicoriaChair - Gov't Relations Committee
Jordan Cicoria is a Managing Director of AERIUM Analytics, a UAS-As-A-Service company based in Calgary that provides unique UAS solutions and services in and around multiple Industries.
As a small business owner Jordan has a strong focus on commercializing the UAV service industry and has been making forays into the US and Mexico in non-traditional industries like airports and mining wildlife management with the support of Alberta Economic Development and Trade and the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service. Jordan has over 10 years’ experience the Natural Resources, Energy, GIS and Regulatory industries.
Krisitin Kozuback, MEd., CSPChair - Communications Committee
Kristin is known as a ‘community connector’ and brings 30 years of professional sales, marketing and business development work across Canada to our Board of Directors.
Kristin is passionate about drone safety, compliance, collaboration and Indigenous reconciliation initiatives. Since launching her own consulting and business training company, Spiritlink Communications in 1999, Kristin has taught and coached 470+ entrepreneurs across Canada and worked in over 30 Indigenous communities, colleges, and organizations. She specializes in designing programs and products to enable start-ups, emerging businesses and established companies to increase revenues, expand operational capacity, and take advantage of innovative technologies. Kristin Kozuback co-founded the Canadian drone software solution provider, AirMarket Inc., in 2015.
Kristin earned her Canadian Sales Professional designation (CSP) and Masters in Education Degree (MEd.) with a specialty in Diversity, Curriculum Design & Indigenous Methodologies. Kristin looks forward to helping USC expand its role as leaders in the UAS sector by moving forward initiatives that increase diversity, primarily by promoting #WomenInDrones and driving engagement with Indigenous businesses, communities and organizations.
Kristin acknowledges that she’s privileged to live, work and play on the beautiful Coast Salish territories of Vancouver, BC.
Michael Campbell, P. Eng.Vice Chair - Operations
Michael Campbell is currently Owner and Chief Photographer, Videographer and UAV Pilot at his business, ckmmphotographic.
Mike has a certificate in Digital Photography from George Brown College and is currently a licensed Professional Engineer in Electrical Engineering with Professional Engineers Ontario. He is also a member of IEEE.
Prior to launching ckmmphotographic, Mike worked for over 35 years in Telecommunications and High Tech, holding progressively more senior positions, as well as managing technology lines of business for a major corporation, Nortel Networks.
.Mike is also active in several volunteer roles and is currently the Vice President of and a Director on the Board of the NRPC, a non-profit corporation set up to represent the pensioners and former employees during the extended bankruptcy proceedings of Nortel. He is also a Director on the Canadian Federation of Pensioners, an advocacy group for pensioners’ interests.
Board of Directors
Sean Adams is the CEO/President of 3 Points In Space Media Ltd. and is working to promote the importance of UAV technology, capabilities, and legalities.
Sean currently works with Mag Aerospace as the Aerial Operations Supervisor – Fire Division. He is responsible for operations of the air attack support aircraft for various ministries and agencies.
Sean has over 25 years of business management experience; growing, developing, and handling various large-scale automotive, nautical, and aerial operations. He is passionate about archaeological mapping and remote sensing; with a focus on the Maritime sites.
Sean is committed to the regulatory framework for UAV operations; namely, the importance of education and licensing within the industries. He aims for consistency, clarity and transparency to ensure that safety is a priority and innovation is constant.
He will ensure that students, members, and the public have a place where they can find accurate information for the ever-changing RPAS industry in Canada.
With a background of tech start-up and commercial aviation, the world of unmanned aerial systems was a logical one for Philip Reece, the founder of InDro Robotics.
Fresh from the world of commercial general aviation, as the CEO of a seaplane airline flying 16 flights a day with a fleet of De Havilland DhC-2 “Beavers”,
Philip noticed many of the industry flights for clients in construction, mining, forestry and wildlife could be carried out by UAVs. From there it was a matter of finding the smartest people in the industry and building up a team that could set about bringing the professionalism of commercial aviation to the burgeoning world of “drones”.
Prior to his role in aviation, Philip started and successfully built companies in IT, oil & gas and control and instrumentation taking him from one end of the world to the other, opening offices in London, Houston, Toronto and satellite offices in many locations ending in ‘stan. Now primarily based at the R&D office on Salt Spring Island, BC he still gets to travel to far flung places when servicing the humanitarian aid clients that InDro Robotics works with, recently completing work in Haiti and Nepal.
Robert Lefebvre has been involved in the RPAS industry since 2010 when he became one of the lead developers of the Ardupilot open-source UAS hardware/software suite. He is also the designer of the Procyon 800E helicopter drone, which featured revolutionary design concepts, high-performance and reliability, and took advantage of advanced manufacturing techniques allowing economic low-rate production.
Robert is the Chair of USC’s RPAS Regulatory Committee which is working to bring about progressive change to regulations in Canada, with the goal of allowing ‘normalized’ BVLOS flight which is a fundamental requirement to allow commercial viability of mid-size and large-scale UAV industrialization.
Ken Whitehead is the Research Lead at the Centre for Innovation and Research in Unmanned Systems (CIRUS) at SAIT.
CIRUS is an NSERC-funded centre of excellence, which focuses on real world applications of unmanned systems, and specifically on the use of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs).
CIRUS has completed a wide variety of applied research projects, but major strengths lie in construction monitoring, Search and Rescue, and in UAV-based methane detection. Ken has lead authored journal articles on UAV applications, the current state of the UAV industry in Canada, and on the application of accuracy standards for UAV surveys.
Kate KlassenChair - Training and Certification
Kate Klassen is a commercial pilot and flight instructor on both remotely and directly-piloted aircraft.
A transplant to British Columbia from the east coast of Canada, Kate loves learning and recently received a Management of Technology MBA from Simon Fraser University while also working on her HAM radio license and picking away at French as a second language.
She works in the drone education space providing training and consulting services to pilots.
Frédérique Pivot (http://everywhere.athabascau.ca/pivot/) grew up in France, on the shore of the Mediterranean Sea. Since her early childhood, she dedicated great passion for the Polar region, which largely influenced her coming to Canada and career choice as a remote sensing of snow scientist. Dr. Pivot is a tenured Assistant Professor of physical geography and remote sensing at Athabasca University, Alberta. Her main research focuses on developing enhanced observing systems capabilities (technology and algorithms) for monitoring the spatio-temporal dynamics of snow and ice. For the past few years, she looked into multi-stage remote sensing approaches using UAVs, for improving the collection of cryospheric information at different spatial scales and the retrieval accuracy of snow and ice parameters from space.
Dr. Pivot also works on developing technological ways to innovate the online teaching and learning of geography. She is collaborating with computer scientists to implement field work into her courses by means of mobile technology-guided field trips and collaborative virtual geographic environments. In the last five years, Dr. Pivot has assembled several small fixed-wing and multi-rotor UAVs using off-the-shelf components. She has also received education and training to become a safe and responsible UAV operator. She obtained her first SFOC in September 2012.
Barrie Kirk is the Executive Director of the Canadian Automated Vehicles Centre of Excellence (CAVCOE), and has worked in the technology industries in Canada, the U.K. and the U.S., including senior management positions in Ottawa-area companies.
He has been a consultant since 1982. His projects over the last few years have focused on autonomous vehicles, connected vehicles, automotive infotainment, traveler information services, real-time traffic information, and vehicle use surveys.
Barrie has spoken at many public and private conferences with a wide variety of audiences including smart cities, transportation, transit, technology, vehicle fleet operators, insurance, Internet of Things, real estate, municipal government, parking, Police Chiefs, and unmanned systems.
Barrie received a B.Sc. (Honours) in Electrical Engineering from Coventry University, U.K. He is a Professional Engineer.
Ex-Officio Members of the Board
Charles VidalChair - Student UAS Competition
National Research Council
Charles Vidal emerged as a leader in the unmanned systems field in 2004 when he founded the highly successful UAS student competition team VAMUdeS, at Université de Sherbrooke. During his studies, he led the group, developed UAVs and won competitions worldwide.
Today, Charles continues to play a significant leadership role in the unmanned systems sector. Prior to joining NRC, he was director R&D and BD at KoptR and previously, he was Director, Solutions at ING Robotic Aviation where he lead a multi-disciplinary team creating the next generation of Canadian unmanned systems. He was highly regarded as the ScanEagle site lead and UAS Operator/Maintainer in Afghanistan.
Charles also worked for Pratt & Whitney, Bell Helicopter, and CAE. As a volunteer, he has spent countless hours over the past 8 years as the chair of the Unmanned Systems Canada Student UAS Competition, maturing it into a highly-competitive, highly valued annual event. Charles brings a unique and valuable perspective to the USC board. Few have the breadth of knowledge and experience gained from high intensity military operations to the latest operations in the civil sector including detailed dealings with Transport Canada and DND and performing UAS R&D.
USC Executive Director
Glenn Martin’s career in senior not-for-profit management was at the provincial and national levels primarily in the engineering and technical sectors.
Glenn Martin, B. Comm., CAE, served as the CEO for the 7,000-member consulting engineering industry association in BC and Manager, Public Affairs for the 25,000-member engineering regulatory body. She held a political position to a senior federal cabinet minister and created an international trade consulting business.
A volunteer on Boards established an understanding for the commitment of the USC Board of Directors.
Glenn holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree in International Business and the CAE Certified Association Executive designation.