Our Team is ready to work with you

Jim Etkin

Mr. Jim Etkin is a seasoned IT executive with decades of experience in data exchange standards and frameworks. He has worked with the C-Suite Management of insurance companies, led the design and implementation of high-profile, mission-critical, applications and systems, and created enterprise data infrastructures that drive profitable decision making. Currently he is researching ways to directly apply the power of data science to some of the world’s pressing problems, including RS for agriculture. He holds a BS in Computer Science, Union College.

Dr. Nadine Alameh

As the CEO of Snowflake Software Inc, Dr. Alameh has successfully launched and grew the business in the states to become the model for innovation in the Aviation Information Management field. Dr. Alameh works with Snowflake's North American customers to leverage the growing amount of aviation information available nowadays, and to simplify their information management and dissemination operations. Prior to Snowflake, Dr. Alameh was Executive Director of the OGC Innovation Program where she led the one-of-a-kind global, innovative, hands-on agile prototyping program designed to unite users and industry in accelerating geospatial interoperability in a multitude of markets. Dr. Alameh is a recognized leader in the GIS field with over 20 years of experience working across several sectors of the industry such as Aviation, Defense & Intelligence and Earth Observations. Prior to joining the OGC, Dr. Alameh co-founded a small business dedicated to developing, promoting and incorporating geospatial interoperability within her clients' enterprise architectures. In that capacity, she served as Senior Technical Advisor to NASA's Applied Sciences Geoscience Interoperability Office, acting as the NASA representative to OGC, ISO and other standards organizations. Dr. Alameh holds 2 MS degrees and a Ph.D. from MIT in the field of Information Systems Engineering. 

Darryl Jenkins

Mr. Darryl Jenkins was born in Michigan, and educated in Utah and Arizona. Previously, he was with George Washington University for fifteen years and served as Director of the Aviation Institute and the Director of the Graduate Certificate Program in Aviation Management from 2001 to 2003. He was visiting faculty at Embry Riddle Aeronautical University in 2004. As a consultant, he has worked on numerous projects related to commercial aviation.  Recently, Mr. Jenkins changed his area of emphasis to commercial drones after he released  the first economic impact study of integrating UAS into the National Airspace for the trade group AUVSI. Although this study is more than three years old, it is still the most quoted study on UAV economics and was recently referred to in a White House speech by President Obama.     

Andrew Rae

Expert in cloud based big data architectures and their supporting infrastructures. Co-founded masFlight and integrated FAA SWIM and Solace data into the masFlight platform.  Was CTO at Maxjet Airways, and at Amazon.com led teams responsible for Amazons Data Warehousing, as well as working on their predictive analytics systems.

Robert Blair

Mr. Robert Blair is a fourth generation farmer with Three Canyons Farm, Idaho. He is specializing in precision agriculture, remote sensing, and Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAV). Mr. Blair is a graduate of Lapwai High School and the University of Idaho. He grew up on a farm near Kendrick, Idaho and currently manages it. In 2004 Blair incorporated precision farming equipment to his operation to reduce costs, increase productivity, and to reduce environmental impact. In 2006 Blair added a UAV to his farming operation and started a company based around these technologies. Blair's efforts with precision agriculture and UAVs has led him to be an expert on UAV use for agriculture and to speak at agriculture functions in the United States. Mr. Blair played basketball at Kendrick High School winning the 1985 Idaho A4 championship still holding two tournament team records and at Lapwai High School winning the 1987 A3 Idaho championship and belonging to the longest basketball winning streak n Idaho history at 81 games.

Blair currently resides on the family farm and serves as an executive board member for the Idaho Grain Producers Association  and is an Idaho Farm Bureau Federation county president.

Melissa Mendes

Ms. Melissa Mendes provides market research for Skylark Drone Research projects including a UAS project involving NASA and developing the conference on unmanned vehicles, air, land and sea.


In addition to working with Skylark Drone Research on aviation issues, she provides compliance monitoring for a major fashion manufacturer.


She holds a BA in merchandising from Fashion Institute of Technology, New York and a AA in Merchandising from Nassau Community College.

Advisory Board

Dr. Joe Glauber

Former USDA Chief Economist Dr. Glauber was the department’s chief economist since March 2008, when he was named to the post by then-Agriculture Secretary Ed Schafer. He’d been deputy chief economist from 1992 to 2007, before serving a brief stint with the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative. He now serves as Senior Research Fellow at the International Food Policy Research Institute in Washington, DC. Dr. Glauber received his Ph.D. in agricultural economics from the University of Wisconsin in 1984 and holds an AB in anthropology from the University of Chicago. In 2012, he was elected Fellow of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.  

Randy Russell

Mr.. Randy M. Russell was born and raised in Virginia. Mr. Russell attended George Mason University, where he was a proud member of the school’s baseball team, and where he did his undergraduate studies in public administration and graduate work in economics. Before joining the advocacy firm, The Russell Group,  in 1986, he worked in a number of agricultural policy positions both inside and outside of government.  Randy served as Chief of Staff to Secretary of Agriculture John Block and also as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Economics.  He also served as agricultural aide on Capitol Hill for the Senate Agriculture Committee and former U.S. Senator Rudy Boschwitz.  

Jenny Lieb

Former Deloitte technology manager with a decade experience focusing on delivering technology solutions that drive meaningful impacts to large federal and state governments and fortune 500 companies. Previously with Apple Operations.

Ken Lee

Mr. Kenneth Lee has been involved in Washington, DC legal, legislative and regulatory matters since 1976. After 15 years in the Solicitor’s Office of the Department of the Interior, specializing in environmental and natural resource legal issues, he went into private practice and began to hone his government relations skills. In 2001 he set up his own shop, Kenneth G. Lee, Consulting, to focus on his government relations and advocacy clientele.