WF-PST Industry Panel Sessions

Join us for important panel discussions covering vital real-world demands and industry case studies. The panelists, a set of diverse public safety agencies, researchers, industry leaders, and first responders, aim to share their insightful perspectives and engage the broader community in a stimulating dialogue. Examples include how personnel can be more effective in their work, support sustained health and wellness, and learn how technology safeguards our communities. Additional panels will be announced soon.

  • Industry Program Chair – Narendra Mangra, GlobeNet LLC
  • Industry Program Co-Chair – Ashutosh Dutta, Johns Hopkins University/APL

Panel 1: Threat Detection and Identification (May 14)

Public safety is faced with many threats and requires infrastructure resiliency and scalability to meet dynamic needs, information sharing for situational awareness and decision-making to address risks, and shared responsibilities across geographies and jurisdictions. The ability to detect and identify threats is needed to protect and secure borders, critical infrastructure, cybersecurity environment, agriculture and food, health services, schools, transportation, large gatherings, and events. This panel discussion will address key capabilities and considerations for threat detection and identification.

PANELISTS

    • Dr. Semih Aslan, Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering, Texas State University
    • Dr. Walt Magnussen, Director of the Texas A&M University Internet2 Technology Evaluation Center (ITEC)
    • Byron McCray, K-12 School Security Director
    • Dr. Danda Rawat, Associate Dean for Research & Graduate Studies, College of Engineering and Architecture, Howard University

Dr. Semih AslanBIO: Dr. Semih Aslan is an Associate Professor of Electrical Engineering at Texas State University, where he joined in 2011. He previously worked as a Senior FPGA Design Engineer with Motorola and full-time instructor at ITT Technical Institute. At ITT Technical Institute, Dr. Aslan worked with minority students as a full-time instructor and assistant dean for over 10 years on the west side of Chicago. Dr. Aslan is the founding director of the System Modeling and Green Technology (SMART) Lab in the Ingram School of Engineering at Texas State. He currently advises graduate and undergraduate senior students on green energy, multi-processor system design and data analysis projects and has numerous publications.

 

Dr. Walt MagnussenBIO: Dr. Walt Magnussen is the Director of the Texas A&M University Internet2 Technology Evaluation Center (ITEC). He has been directing the center which has a focus on critical communications interoperability for defense and public safety for 20 years. The ITEC work in the NG911, 4G/5G and other critical communications infrastructure and applications space is well known throughout the world.  

Dr. Magnussen has been in the communications industry for over 50 years since he began his career in the Air Force supporting secure voice and data systems.  For the past 20 years he has directed the Internet2 Technology Evaluation Center (ITEC) at Texas A&M University.  The ITEC is one of the leading public safety and defense interoperability centers in the world working in Next Generation 911, 5G communications, Mission Critical Push-to-talk and several other leading-edge technologies. In January 2024 Dr. Magnussen began his two-year term on the National Spectrum Consortium Executive Committee because of his leadership role in 5G wireless research.  Because of his expertise he has been called on to testify before Congress, serve on FCC advisory committees and he currently sits on the DHS Safecom federal advisory committee.   Dr. Magnussen has his PH. D from Texas A&M University and his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Minnesota.

 

Byron McCrayBIO: Byron McCray offers more than thirty years of extensive experience across Public Safety, Law Enforcement, Human Services, and the application of computer technology for school safety enhancement. His distinguished career is highlighted by his service in several key roles, such as Regional Director, Director, Chief, Sergeant, Investigator, and Officer. These roles prominently showcase his exemplary leadership skills.
McCray’s educational background includes studies at John Jay College, Brooklyn Law School and Elizabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University. His record of achievements is impressive, featuring completion of programs in Diversity, Equity & Inclusion at Cornell University, Mechanical Ventilation at Harvard Medical School, and a substantial amount of Instructor training through the Department of Criminal Justice Services and Homeland Security.
Additionally, McCray is a certified mediator and offers his expertise as an instructor to both New York State and Federal Law Enforcement agencies. His certification not only highlights his profound ability to promote effective communication but also exemplifies his steadfast commitment to ongoing education and professional development.

Danda RawatBIO: Dr. Danda B. Rawat is a Full Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science (EECS), Associate Dean for Research & Graduate Studies (CEA), Founding Director of the Howard University Data Science & Cybersecurity Center, Founding Director of DoD Center of Excellence in Artificial Intelligence & Machine Learning (CoE-AIML), Director of Cyber-security and Wireless Networking Innovations (CWiNs) Research Lab, Director of Trustworthy Artificial Intelligence (TruAI) Research Lab, Graduate Program Director of Howard CS Graduate Programs and Director of Graduate Cybersecurity Certificate Program and led as the Founding Executive Director and PI of the Research Institute for Tactical Autonomy (RITA), the 15th US Department of Defense sponsored University Affiliated Research Center (UARC) focused on Tactical Autonomy at Howard University, Washington, DC, USA. Dr. Rawat is engaged in research and teaching in the areas of cybersecurity, machine learning, big data analytics and wireless networking for emerging networked systems including cyber-physical systems (eHealth, energy, transportation), Internet-of-Things, multi domain operations, smart cities, software defined systems and vehicular networks.


Panel 2: Public Safety Technologies: Needs and Challenges (May 14)

Professionals use technologies to protect our communities from threats that range from manmade to natural disasters. Moderated by Russel Harrison, Managing Director, IEEE USA, the panel will discuss current needs and challenges to using new technologies in the field.

MODERATOR: Russell Harrison, Managing Director of IEEE-USA

Russell HarrisonBIO: Russell T. Harrison is IEEE-USA’s director of Government Relations. He previously served as senior legislative representative for grassroots activities. In addition to providing overall strategic direction and day-to-day operational management of IEEE-USA’s government relations program and staff, he also focuses on programs and activities design to help U.S. IEEE members interact with – and influence – elected officials. He is also responsible for a number of IEEE-USA government relations initiatives, particularly small and independent business policy and high-skill immigration reform. Prior to IEEE-USA, Russell directed grassroots programs at the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries and the American Iron and Steel Institute. In these positions, he also raised over $300,000 in campaign contributions through the associations’ political action committees. He has also represented the recycling and steel industries on Capitol Hill and in state capitols on a variety of issues as a professional lobbyist. Russell has a B.A. in Political Science, with minors in History and Communication, from Allegheny College, and a Masters in Public Policy from the University of Maryland.


Panel 3: Increased Awareness and Readiness Levels

Public safety requires increased awareness and readiness capabilities to avoid, prevent or stop imminent threats. These capabilities require an integrated approach to planning, public information and warning systems, coordinated operations, forensics and attribution, shared information, interdiction and disruption, and active and passive surveillance. It is essential to develop engaged partnerships through a whole community approach, scalability, flexibility, adaptability, and the readiness to act. The ability for increased awareness and readiness is essential to prevent chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and explosive (CBRNE) threats; cybersecurity threats; attacks on the electrical grid; biological terrorism; chemical and biological food contamination; and much more. This panel discussion will address key capabilities and considerations for increased awareness and readiness levels.

PANELISTS

    • Eman Hammad, Assistant Professor, Texas A&M University
    • Luis Kun, (2023-2024) IEEE President of the Society on Social Implications of Technology and a Distinguished Professor Emeritus (CHDS/NDU)
    • Robert Osgood, Director, Computer Forensics, Associate Professor, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Volgenau, George Mason University
    • Anjuli “A.J.” Renold, Senior Associate Director, Internet2 Technology Evaluation Center (ITEC)

Eman HammadBIO: Dr. Eman Hammad is a cybersecurity & interdisciplinary professional who has her PhD in Electrical & Computer Engineering from the University of Toronto. Her research focuses on the cyber-physical security and resilience of smart power systems. Dr. Hammad investigates how a deeper understanding of interactions between critical infrastructure systems and enabling technologies can help design new classes of operational solutions that are more resilient and secure by design. Her research interests include cyber-physical security, resilient autonomous systems, operational trust and risk-aware coordination. She is the director of the innovations in Systems’ Trust & Resilience (iSTAR) lab. Dr. Hammad’s research has been published in more than 70 papers and has been recognized with merit awards (Best Paper Award, Best Poster Awards). Most recently, she was honored as one of Canada’s Top 20 Women in Cybersecurity. Dr. Hammad is a senior IEEE member serving as the co-chair of the IEEE Future Networks Security working group for the International Network Generations Roadmap (INGR). She is regularly invited to deliver keynote talks and presentations. She is an active advocate for diversity and inclusion in STEM, power, and Cybersecurity.

KunBIO: Luis Kun is the (2023-2024) IEEE President of the Society on Social Implications of Technology and a Distinguished Professor Emeritus (CHDS/NDU) and ADCOM member of EMBS. Born in Montevideo, graduated from the Merchant Marine Academy in Uruguay and holds a BSEE, MSEE, and PhD degree in BME, all from UCLA. He is an IEEE Life Fellow, a Fellow of the: American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, the International Academy of Medical and Biological Engineering, and the International Union for Physical and Engineering Sciences in Medicine. Founding EIC of Springer’s Journal of Health and Technology. Spent 14 years at IBM and was the Director of Medical Systems Technology at Cedars Sinai Medical Center. Developed the first 6 healthcare applications for the IBM PC.  As Senior IT Advisor to AHCPR, he formulated the IT vision and was the lead staff for HPCC and Telehealth. July 1997 invited speaker to the White House, largely responsible for the first Telemedicine Homecare Legislation signed by President Clinton, August 1997.  Distinguished Fellow at the CDC, Acting Chief IT Officer for the National Immunization Program, formulated their IT vision on 10/2000. In 2002 he developed and taught the courses of Knowledge Management and AI in Public Health for the Public Health Informatics curricula at the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University. Dr. Kun received many awards including: AIMBE’s first-ever Fellow Advocate Award in 2009; IEEE-USA Citation of Honor Award: “For exemplary contributions in the inception and implementation of a health care IT vision in the US.” Named “Profesor Honoris Causa” by Favaloro University, (Argentina) 2009 and “Distinguished Visitor” by the City of Puebla, Mexico, 2013. Since 2003, served as an IEEE Distinguished Visitor for Computers, Distinguished Lecturer (DL) for EMBS and SSIT where he chairs the DL Program since 2016. 

Robert OsgoodBIO: Robert Osgood (Bob), engineer/C.P.A., is a 26-year veteran FBI Computer Forensics Examiner and Technically Trained Special Agent. His specialties include digital forensics, data intercept, cyber-crime, enterprise criminal organizations, espionage, and counter-terrorism. In the course of his work, he has performed digital forensics research and development and created unique new software tools for computer forensic law enforcement. He has also been employed as Project Director for ManTech International Corp. working in the Computer Forensic Intrusion Analysis Division. He formed the first FBI computer forensics squad in 2000, served as the Chief of the FBI’s Digital Media Exploitation Unit, and was part of the team that executed the first court-authorized digital computer intercept. Mr. Osgood managed and deployed the Washington D. C. gunshot detection system.

AJ RenoldBIO: Anjuli “A.J.” Renold leads administrative functions of the Internet2 Technology Evaluation Center (ITEC) including management of the center’s research portfolio and private contracts. ITEC performs and supports applied research focused on wireless and next generation communications systems for public safety, defense, and critical infrastructure. The primary focus of these efforts is connectivity, interoperability and cybersecurity during emergencies and disasters. With extensive experience as a former executive director for esteemed organizations like the American Red Cross and Court Appointed Special Advocates, Renold has a proven ability to lead transformative change and foster organizational growth.

During her tenure as chief administrative officer of Voices for Children, CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) of Brazos Valley Inc., Renold effectively managed diverse federal, state, and private grants. She employed data-driven program evaluation strategies to ensure the seamless delivery of exceptional services and upheld unwavering quality standards. Renold also actively advocated for essential reforms in child welfare as a member of the Leadership Council for National CASA. Prior to joining ITEC, Renold most recently held the position of Executive Director of the American Red Cross Heart of Texas Chapter, overseeing the operations for a 17-county region and often deploying to national disasters to provide humanitarian aid and logistical coordination with partner agencies.

Renold continues to serve as an American Red Cross volunteer member of the National Elected Official Liaison Network and State Disaster Relations team and lead for local government operations, highlighting her dedication to public service. Renold is a graduate of Texas A&M University and holds a Master of Journalism degree from the Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism at the University of North Texas.


Panel 4: Global Priorities, Challenges, and Opportunities

Public safety or public protection and disaster recovery (PPDR) plays a vital role in preserving life, health, and property against adverse events across the globe. Public safety functions include the need for increased awareness and readiness, threat detection and identification, improved situational awareness and decision-making capabilities, tactical and emergency support functions, and recovery support functions.
This panel discussion will address global public safety priorities, challenges, and opportunities to address the dynamic public safety landscape across geographic, social, environmental, and technological areas.

PANELISTS

  • Prof Latif Ladid, Founder & President, IPv6 FORUM www.ip6forum.org
  • Dr. Jonathan Pan, Chief, Disruptive Technologies Office, and Director, xCybersecurity, Enterprise Group, Home Team Science and Technology Agency (HTX), Singapore

Latif LadidBIO: Prof Latif Ladid holds the following positions:
Founder & President, IPv6 FORUM www.ip6forum.org
Emeritus Trustee, Internet Society www.isoc.org.
Founding co-Chair, IEEE Future Networks World Forum 2024 https://fnwf2024.ieee.org/
Board Member IPv6 Ready & Enabled Logos Program https://www.ipv6ready.org/
Member of 3GPP PCG (Board) (www.3gpp.org), 3GPP2 PCG (www.3gpp2.org).
Former co-Chair, IEEE Blockchain World Forum
Former Chair, IEEE IoT World Forum
Former Chair, ETSI IPv6 Industry Specification Group : https://portal.etsi.org/tb.aspx?tbid=827&SubTB=827.
Former Founder of the EU Pubic Safety Forum from an EU Project called u2020.
Former Board Member World Summit Award www.wsis-award.org.
Former Member of UN Strategy Council Member of Future Internet Forum EU Member States (representing Luxembourg).
Former Research Fellow @ University of Luxembourg ( since 2006) on multiple European Commission Next Generation Technologies Projects.
IPv6 Forum Internet Pioneer Award, 2002, IPv6 Life Time Achievement Award, 2016.

BIO: Jonathan Pan leads the Disruptive Technologies Office of the Home Team Science and Technology Agency (HTX), Singapore. This office explores the frontiers of Science and Technologies, like Artificial Intelligence and Quantum, for homeland security application through their applied Research and Development endeavors. He also concurrently leads the cybersecurity team in HTX. Jonathan conducts his own research in Artificial Intelligence & Cyber Security. He is also an Adjunct Associate Professor with Nanyang Technological University Singapore where he teaches Cyber Security and Artificial Intelligence courses.


Panel 5: Situational Awareness and Emergency Response

Public safety benefits from technologies and processes that reduce the impact of adverse events affecting life, health, and property. Improved situational awareness enables better decision-making capabilities and may help to Identify and mitigate risks and issues from environmental, technological, accidental, or other sources. Contextual communication information for situational improvement and emergency response includes geographical information services, and dynamic environmental conditions through permanent, temporary, and portable communication tools. Robust voice, data, and video communications are essential. This panel discussion will address key capabilities and considerations on the potential for improved situational awareness, enhanced decision-making, and emergency response capabilities.

PANELISTS

  • Jes Kiran, Chief Software Architect for High Availability and Disaster Recovery Technologies on Power Systems, IBM.
  • Grayson Randall, IEEE MOVE Operations Lead and Chief Technology Officer of Ascot Technologies, Inc.

Jess KiranBIO: Jes Kiran is the Chief Software Architect for High Availability and Disaster Recovery Technologies on Power Systems at IBM. He has 20+ years of IT experience and expertise in HA/DR, Clustering, Cloud, Docker, and Storage replication technologies. He is an IBM Master Inventor with 20+ patents and papers. He is also Chair of IEEE group -“Disaster Recovery for Enterprise Blockchain Workloads” and Chair of the Association of Enterprise Architects, Hyderabad chapter.

 

Grayson RandallBIO: Grayson Randall is very active in IEEE including Future Directions and Public Safety initiatives. He serves as the Operations Lead for the IEEE-USA MOVE Community Outreach Program, providing power and communications at disasters (move.ieeeusa.org). He partners with the NC state emergency response team and other disaster relief organizations. He is a Life Member of the Vestal, NY Fire Department.

Mr. Randall is known in the world of robotics for his leadership of the Insight Racing DARPA Grand Challenge team which boasts final and semi-final positions in the highly competitive international autonomous robotic vehicle races. Mr. Randall serves as Vice President & Chief Technology Officer at Ascot Technologies, Inc., an award-winning software company. A former IBMer with 13 patents, he has over 40 years of experience in systems design and architecture.

 


Panel 6: Roadmaps and Standards

Public safety emergency management principles include a whole community approach for the preservation of life, health and property across geographies, ecosystems and underlying infrastructures. The public safety landscape is constantly evolving due to varying environmental, technological, social, and geopolitical drivers. Public safety scenarios include cybersecurity, electrical grid protection, emergency medical services, fire management, law enforcement, public health, search and rescue, tactical services, and much more. New and enhanced capabilities become essential to extend the range and depth of the public safety services for mission areas that extend across multiple jurisdictions. They include next-generation communication networks, advanced technologies, enablers, applications and services, and data governance, This panel discussion will explore various technology roadmaps, standards, and initiatives to meet the dynamic needs across the public safety ecosystem.