UAS Symposium Featured Top Legislative, Regulatory Figures on Drone Integration in National Airspace

(CAPE MAY COUNTY, NJ) On Friday, October 30, 2015, Congressman Frank LoBiondo, Chair of the Aviation Subcommittee of the U.S. House of Representatives, and General Mark “Hoot” Gibson, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)’s Senior Advisor on UAS Integration, addressed a crowd of more than 150 drone industry representatives at the UAS Symposium held inside the Naval Air Station Wildwood Museum’s Historic Hangar at the Cape May County Airport.

These two central figures in efforts to integrate commercial unmanned aerial systems (UAS) – or “drones” – into the national air space discussed their latest activities. General Gibson provided an overview of his responsibilities as the newly appointed Senior Advisor on UAS Integration, the restructuring at the FAA as well as the current status of UAS Integration at the FAA. Congressman LoBiondo provided the Symposium’s keynote address, which included the timing and composition of the new FAA Reauthorization and Reform Act. Congressman LoBiondo and General Gibson are supporting steps to ensure that the United States is competitive in the UAS market, forecast by some to have a domestic economic impact of more than $80 billion and to create over 100,000 jobs in the decade after full implementation of comprehensive commercial drone rules.

Co-hosted by Cape May County Freeholder Will Morey and Delaware River and Bay Authority (DRBA) Executive Director Scott Green, the Symposium agenda also included interesting panel discussions comprised of industry leaders who focused on topics involving the current regulatory environment and legal setting; New Jersey’s role in UAS testing; emerging uses in UAS technology; evolution of a UAS workforce; as well as the business challenges facing UAS companies.

UAS Symposium_Gibson_LoBiondo.jpg: During a joint question and answer session, Congressman Frank LoBiondo (right) responds to a participant question as Major General Marke “Hoot” Gibson (left) listens intently.

UAS LoBiondo_keynote.jpg: Congressman Frank LoBiondo addresses more than 150 drone industry enthusiasts, which included representatives from academia, government, and business community.

UAS Panel1.jpg: The Symposium’s first panel focused on New Jersey’s Role in the Test Site Environment. Panelists included (l-r): Stephen Iaquinto, Jr., Vice President at Sunhillo Corporation; Rose Mooney, Executive Director of the Mid-Atlantic Aviation Partnership (MAAP); Joseph M. Sheairs, Sr., Executive Director of the Stockton Aviation Research and Technology Park; and Donald Sebastian, CEO of New Jersey Innovation Institute. The moderator is Stephen Williams, Airports Director at the DRBA.