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Speaker Biographies

Geo-Resolution 2019: The 21st Century Geospatial Ecosystem will bring together leaders from government, academia and industry who are growing the geospatial enterprise in the Greater St. Louis region, as well as those who are on the forefront of the field throughout the country.

Dedric A. Carter, Ph.D. 

Carter is the vice chancellor for operations and technology transfer and professor of engineering practice at Washington University in St. Louis. Carter teaches courses in systems applications to technical, business, and policy issues with an emphasis on the entrepreneurial process and new venture creation. Carter has also served as associate provost and associate vice chancellor for innovation and entrepreneurship, overseeing the Office of Technology Management, the Center for Research Innovation, and the Skandalaris Center for Entrepreneurial Studies. Carter has also served as the senior advisor for strategic initiatives in the Office of the Director at the National Science Foundation and as an assistant dean of engineering at MIT. 

Sharlee Climer, Ph.D. 

Climer is an assistant professor in the department of mathematics and computer science at the University of Missouri – St. Louis. Climer’s research focuses on identifying complex patterns in data using network modeling for approximate solutions and integer linear programming for exact solutions. The metric she introduced for network modeling is the first scientific computation in the world to be run at exascale speed. Her current research strives to leverage supercomputing power to optimally identify combinations of genetic markers associated with complex diseases, an NP-hard problem. She received her Ph.D. in Computer Science from Washington University in St. Louis and postdoctoral training at Washington University School of Medicine. 

Jack Dangermond 

A landscape architect by training, Dangermond founded Environment Systems Research Institute (Esri) in 1969. The vision of Esri was that computer mapping and analysis could help design a better future. Esri is now the industry leader in GIS technology, a specialized software used for creating digital maps. Dangermond currently serves as president of Esri, a role he has occupied for 50 years. 

Andy Dearing 

Dearing is the interim president of Planet Federal, a subsidiary of Planet Labs, which has the largest fleet of satellites imaging the entire Earth every day. Previously, Dearing served as the CEO of Boundless Spatial, a geospatial software company headquartered in St. Louis, where he led the startup’s explosive growth before the company was acquired by Planet Labs. Prior to working at Boundless, Dearing worked at Esri for 10 years, where he led the Midwest Professional Services delivery team. Dearing received his Bachelor of Science in Aviation Science and Aviation Management from SLU and an MBA from Maryville University.  Andy serves as a member of the GeoSLU Advisory Board.  

Stacey Dixon, Ph.D. 

Dixon became the fourth director of the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) in September 2018. Her previous titles include the deputy director of IARPA, the deputy director of the InnoVision Directorate at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, and the NGA’s chief of Congressional Intergovernmental Affairs in the Office of Corporate Communications. From 2007 to 2010, she worked on the U.S. House of Representatives Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence staff, and from 2003 to 2007, for the Central Intelligence Agency, assigned to the National Reconnaissance Office’s Advanced Systems and Technology Directorate. 

Jason Hall 

Hall is an entrepreneur who is currently creating a new civic-minded investment firm to accelerate growth in St. Louis. Prior to launching his latest venture, Hall was vice-president of entrepreneurship and innovation with the St. Louis Regional Chamber, a member of former Missouri Governor Jay Nixon’s cabinet and the founder of the new Missouri Technology Corporation (MTC). Hall has been a key architect of innovative public-private partnerships, including the Small Business Relief Fund that quickly opened lines of capital for Ferguson-area small businesses in 2014; securing a permanent home for the downtown St. Louis T-Rex Innovation Community and bringing the Inner-City Capital Connections program to St. Louis in 2016. 

The Honorable Jeffrey K. Harris 

Harris is the chairman of the Board of Directors at the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation (USGIF) and consults with government and industry as CEO of JKH Consulting LLC. Harris retired from Lockheed Martin, where he was a corporate officer and served as president of Lockheed Martin Missiles and Space and the president of Lockheed Martin Special Programs. Before entering the private sector, Harris served in senior national leadership positions, including assistant secretary of the air force for space and director of the National Reconnaissance Office. He has received numerous awards, including the National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal and the U.S. Geospatial Intelligence Foundation Lifetime Achievement Award. 

Sue Kalweit 

Kalweit is the director of the Analysis Directorate and the portfolio manager for the Analytic Capabilities Portfolio at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. She is responsible for leading NGA’s geospatial intelligence analytic capabilities and resources, as well as modernizing the agency’s analytic efforts toward the future. She also served as senior business manager at Booz Allen Hamilton, serving clients in the defense, intelligence, homeland security and commercial sectors. During her 12 years with the company, she also served as a geospatial capability leader and business manager for more than 100 staff members. Kalweit also was a member of the Academic Advisory Committee at USGIF, where she established an accreditation program for geospatial intelligence certificate programs offered by post-secondary institutions. 

Jim Kavanaugh 

Kavanaugh is the co-founder and CEO of World Wide Technology. Kavanaugh and his management team have guided WWT from a small start-up technology company into a world-class organization. Kavanaugh currently focuses his time in the areas of technology innovation, long term planning, strategic acquisitions, financial performance, employee development and overseeing WWT’s unique corporate culture. Kavanaugh is also an investor and board member of the cybersecurity firm Privoro. Deeply committed to giving back to the community, Kavanaugh has served as president of the board for St. Patrick Center, an organization that provides homeless services for Missourians. Prior to founding WWT, Kavanaugh worked at Future Electronics and played professional soccer.  

Elizabeth Lyon

Elizabeth Lyon is the Senior GEOINT Authority for Geography and Cartography at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. She is the senior mission manager for National System for GEOINT, leading vision, strategy, and tradecraft for the geographic and cartographic domains. She's previously worked across the US Government at the US Army Corps Of Engineers, US Agency for International Development, and the Office of the Secretary of Defense, as well as consulting and volunteering globally. She co-chairs the World Wide Human Geography Data Working Group with the State Department, leads the Geospatial Community 'Geo-DC' in Washington DC and enthusiastically supports all geography and geospatial activities in her communities. Elizabeth has degrees from Augustana College, University of Illinois, and George Mason University.

Christy Monaco 

Monaco joined the NGA in 2013 and since 2017 has served as NGA’s chief ventures officer, director of the agency’s corporate assessment and program evaluation office. She coordinates NGA’s innovation initiatives with agency stakeholders, government partners, industry and academia. She also leads NGA’s acquisition innovation efforts manages relationships with the commercial sector. Monaco joined NGA on a joint duty assignment as the chief of congressional and intergovernmental affairs, and later served as the deputy director of NGA’s Office of Corporate Communications. Monaco has served in numerous positions within the intelligence community, including at Office of Naval Intelligence and the Defense Intelligence Agency. 

Mark Munsell 

Munsell is the chief technology officer at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, leading the agency’s efforts to modernize its technologies and attract IT talent. Prior to that, he served as the deputy director of the CIO and Information Technology Services Directorate at the NGA. In 2006, he returned to NGA after establishing Internet Marine and Aviation Planning Services providing flight and maritime planning services for individuals, industry and government customers. He first entered NGA in 1996 to lead the agency’s aeronautical production systems updates. Munsell is a recipient of the Department of Commerce Bronze Medal for his work in software engineering for the U.S. nautical charting production system. He also received the Presidential Rank Award and NGA’s Distinguished Civilian Service Medal.

Fred Pestello, Ph.D. 

Pestello became the 33rd president of Saint Louis University in 2014. He is the first permanent lay president in SLU’s 200-year history. Under his leadership, the university has come together as a community to develop and advance a campus-wide strategic plan and vision for the future. The University has also increased investment in faculty, scholarship, research and facilities — reaching new heights of academic excellence and patient outcomes. Community engagement is a central tenant of Pestello’s leadership, and SLU has elevated its involvement in the St. Louis region and working as a partner to bring people together and address the region’s most pressing issues. Pestello is currently leading SLU’s $500 million Accelerating Excellence Campaign, the largest fundraising effort in University history. 

Marie Price, Ph.D. 

Price is the president of the American Geographical Society and a professor of geography and international affairs at George Washington University, where she has taught since 1990. A Latin American and migration specialist, her studies have explored human migration, natural resource use, environmental conservation and regional development. She is a non-resident fellow of the Migration Policy Institute, a non-partisan think tank that focuses on immigration issues based in Washington D.C. She has co-authored Migrants’ Inclusion in Cities: Innovative Urban Policies and Practices, Migrants to the Metropolis: The Rise of Immigrant Gateway Cities, and several textbooks. She has also published some 40 refereed articles and book chapters. 

Kristin Robertson 

Robertson is vice president and general manager for Boeing’s Autonomous Systems Division, which focuses on integrating and delivering autonomous capabilities from seabed to space for customers worldwide. Robertson joined the company in 1994, and has held various leadership positions including vice president of Tiltrotor programs and Bell Boeing V-22 program director, and most recently as vice president of engineering and chief engineer for BDS Strike, Surveillance and Mobility. Prior to Boeing, Robertson was employed by the U.S. Navy as a civilian electronics engineer at the Naval Aviation Depot in San Diego, California. 

Francis Rose (Emcee) 

Rose is an award-winning broadcaster, journalist, speaker, writer and host of “Government Matters” on WJLA/ABC7 and NewsChannel 8 in Washington, DC. “Government Matters” a multi-platform news program dedicated to providing non-partisan information and analysis to federal managers, contractors and those supporting the federal marketplace. Rose has covered all three branches of the federal government as a broadcast journalist since 1998, including stops at America’s leading broadcasters, such as ABC Radio, CBS Radio, Westwood One and C-SPAN. 

Ness Sandoval, Ph.D. 

Sandoval is an associate professor of sociology in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Saint Louis University. He is the co-director of the Ph.D. program in Public and Social Policy, and one of three leaders of GeoSLU: the SLU Geospatial Research, Training, and Innovation Enterprise. His primary research interests focus on the intersection of demographic techniques and computational spatial science to study spatial inequality in American cities and using demographic techniques to advance the field of Social-Environmental Synthesis. Sandoval is also interested in the emerging field of Forensic GISc and the application of spatial statistics to crime and social and economic neighborhood disadvantages. 

Lee Schwartz, Ph.D.

Schwartz is the State Department’s 8th geographer, a position that bears the statutory responsibility for providing guidance to all federal agencies on questions of international boundaries and sovereignty claims. His recent focus has been on projects related to geographic information documentation and coordination related to participatory mapping, complex emergencies and sustainability. Lee was the State Department’s 2005 winner of the Warren Christopher Award for Outstanding Achievement in Global Affairs, the 2012 recipient of the Association of American Geographers’ Anderson Medal of Honor in Applied Geography and was awarded the 2014 James Cullum Medal from the American Geographical Society in recognition of his distinguished service to the profession of geography.  He is also the the recipient of a 2018 Presidential Rank Award.

Robert Sharp 

Vice Admiral Sharp became the seventh director of the NGA on Feb. 7, 2019. He leads and directs the agency under the authorities of the Secretary of Defense and Director of National Intelligence. Prior to this assignment, he has served as commander of the Office of Naval Intelligence, director of the National Maritime Intelligence-Integration Office and director for intelligence (J2) in U.S. Special Operations Command. Previous operational tours include multiple deployments to Afghanistan, where he led joint, inter-agency intelligence professionals supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. Among many other honors, he has received the Vice Admiral Rufus L. Taylor Award for Excellence in Instruction, the U.S. Army’s Knowlton Award for Military Intelligence, the Rear Admiral Edwin T. Layton Award for Leadership and Mentorship, and a Naval Intelligence Foundation Award. 

Robert Shelton, Jr. 

Shelton is the chief technical officer and advisor for Microsoft’s National Intelligence Division, supporting the intelligence community, DHS, DOJ, and DOE. Shelton joined the Microsoft national intelligence team in 2007 as the chief architect, focusing on “The Cloud", Microsoft development platforms and SharePoint as an application platform. Prior to joining the National Intelligence Division, Shelton spent six years as a technology evangelist, focusing on artificial intelligence, advanced software development, Hyperscale Cloud and Collaboration Technologies for the public sector. Shelton has more than 20 years of IT experience, focusing on architecture, development, and IT executive management, including serving as the director of technology for 

Annette Sobel, M.D. 

Sobel is an associate professor in the Department of Medical Education and Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center in Lubbock. She also serves as an adjunct professor of electrical and computer engineering for TTU. She is a former Major General in the Arizona Air National Guard, and was the first director of intelligence for the National Guard Bureau in Arlington, Va., and the second homeland security director to serve the state of New Mexico. She has served as a senior advisor to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency and the Defense Threat Reduction Agency. She also serves as senior advisor on geospatial research for Saint Louis University. 

Dwyane Smith, Ph.D. 

A native of St. Louis and a product of the St. Louis Public School system, Smith is the provost of Harris-Stowe State University. Smith has conducted research across the U.S. and abroad on issues of access, diversity, multiculturalism and pluralism, and he coauthored the article “A Portrait of Remedial Instruction: Faculty Workload and Assessment Techniques,” which appeared in the spring 2008 edition of the Higher Education Journal. He has facilitated workshops on diversity and multiculturalism in various schools and colleges in Great Britain. 

Steven Ward, Ph.D. 

Ward is the senior director of geospatial and weather sciences at the Climate Corporation, a digital agricultural company that examines weather, soil and field data to help farmers enhance yield potentials, improve efficiency, and manage risks. received his bachelor’s, master’s, and doctorate degree from Louisiana State University, where his researched focused on the ability of geospatial technology to assist in disaster research and management.