By Patrick Meier
WeRobotics is not your typical organization. We operate at the cross-section of multiple sectors, industries and skillsets including humanitarian aid, global development, public health, environmental protection, artificial intelligence, advanced robotics, data analytics, capacity building, social entrepreneurship, social innovation, social good and professional photography, digital storytelling and documentary film-making. This explains why our Board of Directors had to be anything but typical!
So we’re absolutely thrilled to be introducing them here publicly for the first time. The members of our Dream Team span the multiple sectors, industries and skillsets listed above. See for yourself:
An internationally-recognized, award-winning photographer, technologist, drone expert, and author. His photography has been featured at the Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum and in many media outlets including Wired, Outdoor Photographer, Popular Photography, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Make, ABC, Good Morning America, CBS, CNN and many others. His video work has been shown on the Discovery Channel, National Geographic Channel, and on virtually every news network around the world. Eric is on the advisory board of U.S. Association of Unmanned Aerial Videographers (UAVUS), Drone World Expo (DWE) and the Humanitarian UAV Network (UAViators), and is a mentor at Startupbootcamp. Eric was deeply involved in developing the Humanitarian UAV Code of Conduct, which has been praised by numerous international humanitarian organizations. Eric was previously the Director of Aerial Imaging at DJI, the world’s leading manufacturer of commercial drones.
Dean of Penn Engineering with appointments in the Departments of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, Computer and Information Science, and Electrical and Systems Engineering at the University of Pennsylvania. Kumar’s group works on creating autonomous ground and aerial robots, designing bio-inspired algorithms for collective behaviors, and on robot swarms. Kumar is a fellow of ASME and IEEE and a member of the National Academy of Engineering. He has held multiple administrative positions in the School of Engineering and Applied Science, including director of the General Robotics, Automation, Sensing & Perception (GRASP) Lab, Chair of Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics, and the position of the Deputy Dean. He served as the Assistant Director of Robotics and Cyber Physical Systems at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Vijay is a TED Speaker and gave the Keynote at the prestigious International Drones for Good Awards in Dubai.
Amy is the Chief of Staff at UCSF’s Global Health Sciences where she leads strategy and operations for the AIDS Research Institute and the Institute of Global Health Delivery and Diplomacy. Lockwood, who has a background spanning the business, non-profit and academic sectors, previously served as Deputy Director for the Stanford University Center for Innovation in Global Health, and as Executive Director of Project Healthy Children, working with governments and local industries in Haiti, Honduras, Liberia, Malawi, Nepal and Rwanda to combat micronutrient malnutrition. She has worked with the Clinton Foundation as the Director of the Global Pediatric HIV/AIDS Program and Deputy Country Director for India, where she was responsible for supporting governments to develop strategies and implementation plans; design guidelines; build systems, procure drugs and diagnostics; and deliver care to HIV-positive children and adults. She has experience in strategic planning, management, evaluation and development of global health projects and programs throughout Africa, Asia and Latin America. Amy is also a TED Speaker.
Gisli is a senior level technology executive with over 25 years of international experience from diverse fields, such as humanitarian response, medical diagnostics, venture capital, non-profit, software development and information technology. He previously served as Nethope’s Emergency Response Director and as Disaster Management Technical Advisor to Microsoft. Gisli is a technology visionary with strong business acumen and strategy development experience. He is a long term trusted technology advisor to national governments, non-profit organizations and international organizations with a deep understanding of the potential of technology to make their organizations more effective. Gisli is also an experienced leader of teams of various sizes, in chaotic, stressful and often life threatening environments. A team builder, motivator and leader, Gisli has a strong focus on empowering and mentoring. A firm believer in cross-organization collaboration, with great experience in bringing together disparate people and organizations around a common vision.
We’re really excited to welcome Eric, Vijay, Amy and Gisli to the WeRobotics team! These highly accomplished experts share our vision and passion so we’re really grateful that we get to draw on their deep and diverse expertise as we move forward. Big, big thanks, Eric, Vijay, Amy and Gisli; and welcome to Team WeRobotics!