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Skydio X10D: Built for Scale

Posted Jun 11, 2024 | Views 58
# Defense
# ISR
# Product
# Military
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SPEAKERS
Kelsee Hober
Kelsee Hober
Kelsee Hober
Director, Product Management - Federal @ Skydio

Kelsee Hober is an accomplished product leader and aviation expert, skilled in iterative innovation and leadership. Her experience spans roles as a combat pilot and Director of Product Management, as well as a Mission Operations Engineer. A former US Army Aviation Officer and UH-60 Pilot at Fort Bragg, NC, she served for over seven years, demonstrating leadership and resilience in three combat tours. Kelsee holds a Bachelor’s in Systems Engineering from the United States Military Academy at West Point (2008-2012), exemplifying her dedication to excellence and innovation.

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Kelsee Hober is an accomplished product leader and aviation expert, skilled in iterative innovation and leadership. Her experience spans roles as a combat pilot and Director of Product Management, as well as a Mission Operations Engineer. A former US Army Aviation Officer and UH-60 Pilot at Fort Bragg, NC, she served for over seven years, demonstrating leadership and resilience in three combat tours. Kelsee holds a Bachelor’s in Systems Engineering from the United States Military Academy at West Point (2008-2012), exemplifying her dedication to excellence and innovation.

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Mark Valentine
Mark Valentine
Mark Valentine
President/General Manager, Global Government @ Skydio

As President/General Manager of Global Government at Skydio, Mark focuses on delivering autonomous aerial capabilities to national governments around the world to make them more productive, creative and safe.

Prior to joining Skydio, Mark was the SVP/GM for Scale AI's Federal team and the GM of Microsoft's National Security team. In those roles, he focused on delivering advanced technologies such as AI/ML, cloud computing and mixed reality to warfighters and analysts across the US Federal government. Prior to his time in industry, Mark served in the US Air Force for over 25 years as a combat veteran fighter pilot (F-16), commander, and staff officer at headquarters US Air Force and the Joint Staff.

Mark currently lives near Annapolis, MD where is is active in the American Legion Boys State program and several non-profit boards.

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As President/General Manager of Global Government at Skydio, Mark focuses on delivering autonomous aerial capabilities to national governments around the world to make them more productive, creative and safe.

Prior to joining Skydio, Mark was the SVP/GM for Scale AI's Federal team and the GM of Microsoft's National Security team. In those roles, he focused on delivering advanced technologies such as AI/ML, cloud computing and mixed reality to warfighters and analysts across the US Federal government. Prior to his time in industry, Mark served in the US Air Force for over 25 years as a combat veteran fighter pilot (F-16), commander, and staff officer at headquarters US Air Force and the Joint Staff.

Mark currently lives near Annapolis, MD where is is active in the American Legion Boys State program and several non-profit boards.

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Nicole Bonk
Nicole Bonk
Nicole Bonk
Director of Flight Testing @ Skydio

Nicole Bonk is a distinguished flight testing professional with extensive experience in the tech industry, currently leading as the Director of Flight Testing at Skydio. Based in San Mateo, California, she oversees Flight Test Operations, Engineering, and Mobile Quality Assurance, focusing on the comprehensive validation and testing of new software and hardware. Before Skydio, Nicole played key roles at GoPro and Google X, where she led hardware and firmware testing and contributed to innovative flight test engineering projects. Her expertise and leadership ensure Skydio's cutting-edge position in autonomous drone technology.

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Nicole Bonk is a distinguished flight testing professional with extensive experience in the tech industry, currently leading as the Director of Flight Testing at Skydio. Based in San Mateo, California, she oversees Flight Test Operations, Engineering, and Mobile Quality Assurance, focusing on the comprehensive validation and testing of new software and hardware. Before Skydio, Nicole played key roles at GoPro and Google X, where she led hardware and firmware testing and contributed to innovative flight test engineering projects. Her expertise and leadership ensure Skydio's cutting-edge position in autonomous drone technology.

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SUMMARY

In today's shifting geopolitical landscape, America's need for independent drone manufacturing is crucial. Controlling supply lines and ensuring organic manufacturing are strategic game changers. Historically, the US has lagged behind in the drone industry, but Skydio is changing this.

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TRANSCRIPT

The current geopolitical landscape, is driving a need for America to create our own drones. So being able to control our supply lines and be able to manufacture organically is a a strategic game changer.

The US has lagged behind China and our adversaries for a really long time in the drone industry. Our manufacturing capability has not been as good, and we haven't been able to innovate as quickly. I think Skydio is really changing that paradigm.

So reliability, scalability, and security, do drive the vast majority of decisions, that we make here at Skydio.

We use the system as soldiers would use it.

We make sure it's reliable in the way that they would need it to be reliable, and we do the testing to back it up.

We're validating every single feature, every single flow that could happen to a user, nominal or off nominal, and making sure the experience is as seamless as possible.

More so than any other vendor I've ever seen, we definitely optimize around cybersecurity and ensure that our customers can trust us. Some of the things that we've done are secure boot, NDA compliance, encryption, and keying on all of our harbor.

We are the largest drone manufacturer in the United States, and we have been able to achieve a level of scale, that no others have. So that is a tremendous differentiator.

We just have a lot of urgency. We have the resources and the staffing and the structure to be able to execute things quickly and turn them around in the time frame that customers actually need them.

I think we at Skydio are in a great position because of our dual use nature.

We can iterate faster in the commercial sphere than we can in the government sphere. And we're able to take some of those learnings and move them over to the military or the defense aspects.

The rapidity at which that can happen is phenomenal with Skydio.

Being a soldier, being with soldiers, having family and friends that are still soldiers, I'm just very, very pleased that the people that I care about and the US and our allies are able to get these capabilities as quickly as possible. We're able to really hear the problems that they have and be a voice for the capabilities that they need.

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