Top 10 people to watch in the Defence AI Industry

We’re taking a look at 10 people to watch in the Defence AI industry, who are dedicated to putting AI to good use and at the forefront of the industry.

Artificial Intelligence (AI) has already begun to shape and innovate many industries around the globe. It has already proven very useful in the healthcare and automotive industries, and now the defence industry is getting in on the action. 

We’re taking a look at 10 people to watch in the Defence AI industry, who are dedicated to putting AI to good use and at the forefront of the industry.


Chris Cowart, Managing Director at SRI International


Chris Cowart serves as the current Managing Director of the SRI International "NSIC" Innovation Center. The centre is solely dedicated to accelerating the adoption of Silicon Valley’s disruptive technology innovation processes into corporate Japan. In his career, Cowart has previously worked as a user experience, design, and product executive, working across brands, innovation consulting, and venture communities for more than 25 years.


Jim Norrod, CEO of PrecisionHawk


Jim Norrod has been the CEO of PrecisionHawk since January 2020. Prior to this, Norrod has worked as the chief executive officer for many other companies, including Tellabs and Zhone Technologies. He is an experienced CEO with a history of working in the information technology and services industry.


Rob Albritton, Senior Director, Artificial Intelligence Practice Lead at Octo 


Rob Albritton has worked as the Senior Director, Artificial Intelligence, for the past year. Previous to this, Albritton has worked with the United States Air Force, the United States Army, NVIDIA and many more. His new role at Octo is to introduce visions for AI innovations by delivering creative and market-leading applications and solutions as well as hiring high-performance teams.


Ryan Tseng, CEO and Co-Founder of Shield AI


Ryan Tseng has been the CEO and co-founder of Shield AI since 2015. Their mission is to protect service members and innocent civilians with artificially intelligent systems. Before founding Shield AI, Tseng worked with industry leader, Qualcomm, as the Technical Lead for Wireless Power Program.


Kevin Bonner, Global Chief Technology Officer at General Dynamics Land Systems


Kevin Bonner has been with General Dynamics Land Systems for the past eight years and has held various positions in this time, including Senior Director, Advanced Products and Technology and Senior Director, Design & Development Engineering. Bonner now works as the Global Chief Technology Officer. He has previously worked for Lockheed Martin and General Dynamics Robotic Systems. 



Aaron Celaya, Commander, 364 Recruiting Squadron at United States Air Force


Aaron Celaya has been with the United States Air Force for the past 16 years. In this time he has held many positions including ICBM Combat Crew Instructor Commander, Officer and currently serves as the Commander of the 364 Recruiting Squadron. Celaya also researches into Artificial Intelligence & Human-Machine, with a focus on human decision making when paired with Artificial Intelligence, autonomous systems, or other types of artificial systems. 


Andrew Dixon, Co-Founder and COO at Reveal Technology


Reveal Technology creates 2D/3D maps and performs analytics on aerial data, deployed on mobile devices at the edge and Andrew Dixon has been the co-founder and COO since November 2018. Prior to co-founding Reveal Technology, Dixon served in both the United States Marine Corps and the United States Marine Forces Reserve.


Tim Grayson, Director, Strategic Technology Office at Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)


Tim Grayson works as the Director, Strategic Technology Office, at DARPA and has been with the company since 2018. His role see’s him managing mission-driven advanced research and development, technology transition, and systems architecture in support of national security. Before joining DARPA, Grayson held positions at the US Government, MITRE, and many more.


Randy Riley, President and CEO of Arcarithm


Randy Riley is the President and CEO of Arcarithm, a leader in proven AI-based computer vision solutions for commercial and defence markets. Riley has been the president and CEO of Arcarithm since the company was founded in May 2012 and prior to that, Riley worked for companies such as Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman Corporation.


Mahasa Zahirnia, C2P Chief Engineer, Cyber Engineer, Artificial Intelligence Lead at Northrop Grumman


Mahasa Zahirnia works as the C2P Chief Engineer, Cyber Engineer, Artificial Intelligence Lead at Northrop Grumman and has been with the company since 2017. Zahirnia has previously worked for leading technology companies such as Booz Allen Hamilton and Sony. She has received various awards from the Department of Defense (DoD) for her performance in the engineering sector and is also the recipient of the 2019 Woman of the Year Award.


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