2023 KEYNOTE SPeakers

Past AIPR Workshop Speakers: 2021, 2022

Dr. Kimberly Manser

Synthetic Data Lead and Research Scientist, US Army Futures Command DEVCOM C5ISR Center

Dr. Manser received her undergraduate degree in Microelectronic Engineering from the Rochester Institute of Technology in 2008, followed by a PhD in Imaging Science from the same institution in 2015. Her graduate studies were funded by fellowships from BAE Systems and the NASA Earth and Space Science Fellowship program based on competitive proposal selection. Her dissertation focused on the simulation and evaluation of advanced photon-counting sensors for space-based satellite missions, leveraging her background in solid state physics, radiometry, and sensor systems.

She joined the Research and Technology Integration Directorate of the C5ISR Center (formerly Night Vision Electronic Sensors Directorate) in 2015 and quickly focused her research goals on the subject of synthetic data, with recent emphasis on AI and Machine Learning computer vision applications. Her academic and professional backgrounds contribute to a unique perspective on synthetic data generation, expanding into the world of machine learning and AI. In her position, she has led several programs and supported others with her research while advocating for rigorous scientific study of synthetic image generation and its interaction with advanced AI/ML algorithms and systems. Her research interests include explainable AI and trusted autonomy, ethics and bias in ML-based systems, and resilience of AI/ML systems across multiple domains and conditions.

Currently, Dr. Manser is the Synthetic Data lead for the ATLAS program, a tank-based aided target detection and recognition system developed for future ground vehicles in the modern Army. She is also the Principal Investigator of a congressionally-funded basic research program, in collaboration with industry and academic research partners. This program aims to quantify the “reality gap,” improve synthetic data generation at a fundamental level, and extend that research to aid in the future of computer vision capability development and system evaluation.

Dr. Manser is the lead chair of the SPIE Defense and Commercial Sensing Symposium’s Conference on Synthetic Data for AI and Machine Learning, which had its inaugural event in May of 2023. The conference solicits talks on synthetic imagery as well as other types of synthetic data to support applications including pose estimation, autonomous navigation, synthetic aperture radar, data quality metrics, and testing or “in-the-loop” applications, among others.

Rob Albritton

Vice President of oLabs and the AI Center of Excellence at Octo (IBM)

Rob Albritton is a Award-winning artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) authority Rob Albritton is Vice President of oLabs and the AI Center of Excellence at Octo. An Air Force veteran and former U.S. Army Geospatial Research Lab Scientist and ML Engineer at MITRE, Rob spent several years growing NVIDIA’s public sector team alongside the world’s foremost thought leaders on high-performance computing, AI, and deep learning. Rob now leads Octo’s oLabs and AI Center of Excellence, where he guides and shapes Octo’s AI capability, strategy, and vision.

Rob’s has made significant contributions to the US Army’s Integrated Visual Augmentation System, the Algorithmic Warfare Cross Functional Team and other high-profile Department of Defense AI and emerging technology programs. 

Rob holds an MBA from the UVA Darden School of Business, a Master’s from the National Intelligence University, certification in Foreign Denial and Deception, and a BS in Geographic Information Systems and Geography from the University of Maryland.  He has been awarded the U.S. Army ERDC Award for Achievement in Technology Transfer; Counter Improvised Explosive Device Technology and the Department the Army Commander’s Award for Civilian Service Support to U.S. Special Operations Command and Joint Personnel Recovery Agency.

Ramesh Menon

Chief Technology Officer of Defense Intelligence Agency

Mr. Ramesh Menon was appointed Chief Technology Officer (CTO), Office of the Chief Information Officer (CIO), Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) on March 1, 2021. Mr. Menon is responsible for technology and strategy planning, experimentation, emerging technology solutions architecture supporting DIA and IC priorities including FVEY partners. Mr. Menon assumed his current position upon his appointment to the SES / DISL-T1. 

Mr. Menon serves as the CTO and authoritative information technology expert for DIA. He develops a cohesive technological strategy for CIO’s, business, and mission partner’s capabilities on the Joint Worldwide Intelligence Communications System and in the Department of Defense Intelligence Information Systems enterprise.

Mr. Menon serves as the senior DIA technologist and interface to the Intelligence Community, Department of Defense, Military Service’s Intelligence Centers, Combatant Commands, international partners, national labs, industry and academia. He conducts feasibility assessments of current and future technology trends within the private and public sectors and makes recommendations on adoption that will increase DIA’s decision advantage. As the CTO, Mr. Menon will serve as the principal advisor for artificial intelligence to the Director and collaborate with other IC and DoD AI leaders.

Born in India Mr. Menon earned a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering and a Master’s degree in Business Administration (MBA) from California State University. He has co-authored three books and has a patent pending for supply chain assurance using Block chain technology.

Mr. Menon was a CTO in the private sector at IBM and a Chief Architect at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (JHU-APL) leading Artificial Intelligence, cloud, cyber and strategic national security initiatives.

Mr. Menon is a member of IEEE congressional delegation on science and technology and an invited frequent guest lecturer on emerging technologies at Johns Hopkins University. He was a member of Brookings Institution AI expert panel on autonomous weapon systems and served on space innovation council workgroup along with NASA, SMC and DARPA. He is also a mentor to AFRL catalyst campus, NASA Frontier Development Labs supporting OSINT and EdgeAI to operate in contested spaces.

Mark Munsell

Director of Data and Digital Innovation, NGA

Mark Munsell serves as the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency’s (NGA) Director of the Data and Digital Innovation Directorate. Formerly, he served as NGA’s Chief Technology Officer and the Deputy Director of the Chief Information Officer – IT Services Directorate. In all of these different roles, Mark facilitates innovative development aimed at transforming and modernizing NGA’s technology to better serve its mission partners, as well as overseeing and streamlining IT-related capabilities and services.

Mark began his federal career with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Norfolk, Virginia. While serving in a multi-disciplinary role as photogrammetrist, cartographer, and surveyor, he was awarded the Department of Commerce Bronze Medal for software engineering work that transformed the nation’s nautical charting production system. 

A native of St. Louis, Missouri, Mark returned to the area in 1996, through a transfer to one of NGA’s predecessor agencies, the Defense Mapping Agency. After successfully leading the update of the agency’s aeronautical production systems, Mark left DMA in 1997. After a stint with a government contractor, he founded Internet Marine and Aviation Planning Services, or IMAPS, in 2000 to offer flight and maritime planning services to individuals, industry, and government via the internet.

He returned to government service with NGA in 2006, and has since served as the Chief of the Precision Engagement Division, Office of Targeting and Transnational Issues; as the Senior Officer for Targeting Issues; as the Deputy Director, Aeronautical Navigation Office; as Director, Office of Targeting and Transnational Issues; and most recently as the Deputy Director of the Data and Digital Innovation Directorate, before becoming director in 2023. Mark is the recipient of the Presidential Rank Award and NGA’s Distinguished Civilian Medal, and – for the record – is not a member of the Flat Earth Society.

Robert Cardillo

President of The Cardillo Group, LLC 

Robert Cardillo is the president of The Cardillo Group, LLC.  Founded in May 2019, The Cardillo Group delivers strategic consultation services dedicated to the growth and development of the intelligence profession to secure and defend the American way of life.

Until February 2019, Robert was the sixth Director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA).  In that position, he led NGA under the authorities of the Secretary of Defense and Director of National Intelligence to transform the Agency’s future value proposition through innovative partnerships with the growing commercial geospatial industry. Robert is the only person to lead the analytic operations at four different organization in the US Intelligence Community – ODNI, DIA, NGA, and the Joint Staff.

Prior to NGA, Robert served as the first Deputy Director for Intelligence Integration, Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI), from 2010 to 2014.  That position included managing, editing, and delivering the President’s Daily Brief to President Obama and Vice President Biden (over 1400 editions), being a member of the Deputies Committee on the National Security Council, overseeing the National Intelligence Managers and the National Intelligence Council. Robert served as the Deputy Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) and the Deputy Director for Analysis, DIA, from 2006 to 2010. In 2009, Robert served as the Acting J2, a first for a civilian, in support of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff – ADM Mike Mullen.

Robert is the Chairman of the Board of Planet Federal, an Outside Director at Seerist Federal and an Independent Director on the Board of SynthetAIc.  Robert’s Advisory Board positions include Cubic, Fortem, Free Space, Peraton, Premise, Saildrone and Trajan Systems. Finally, Robert is an Emeritus Advisor at HawkEye360.

On the academic side, Robert holds Distinguished Fellowships Saint Louis University and the Australian National University. Robert’s non-profit service includes the US Geospatial Intelligence Foundation Board of Directors (Chairman), the National Intelligence University Board of Visitors, the International Spy Museum Board of Directors, the Cortex Innovation Community (St Louis) Board of Directors, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and the National Academy of Sciences.

Robert earned a Bachelor of Arts in Government from Cornell University in 1983 and a Master of Arts in National Security Studies from Georgetown University in 1988. In 2019, Robert received an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Saint Louis University.

  Robert has been awarded the Presidential Rank of Distinguished Executive (twice), the Presidential Rank of Meritorious Executive, the Director of National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal (twice), the Secretary of Defense Distinguished Service Medal (twice) and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Joint Meritorious Civilian Service Award.

Dr. S.S. Iyengar 

Distinguished University Professor

S.S. Iyengar is currently the Distinguished University Professor, Founding Director of the Discovery Lab and Director of the US Army funded Center of Excellence in Digital Forensics at Florida International University, Miami. He is also the Distinguished Chaired Professor at National Forensics Sciences University, Gandhinagar, India. He has been involved with research and education in high-performance intelligent systems, Data Science and Machine Learning Algorithms, Sensor Fusion, Data Mining, and Intelligent Systems. Since receiving his Ph.D. degree in 1974 from MSU, USA, he has directed over 65 Ph.D. students, 100 Master’s students, and many undergraduate students who are now faculty at Major Universities worldwide or Scientists or Engineers at National Labs/Industries around the world. He has published more than 600 research papers, has authored/co-authored and edited 26 books. Brooks–Iyengar algorithm is a research topic. Over the lifetime, 5223 publications have been published within this topic receiving 138976 citations. His h-index is 67 and is among the list of top 2% cited scholars of Stanford study this year. His books are published by MIT Press, John Wiley and Sons, CRC Press, Prentice Hall, Springer Verlag, IEEE Computer Society Press, etc. One of his books titled "Introduction to Parallel Algorithms" has been translated into Chinese. During the last thirty years Dr. Iyengar has brought in over 65 million dollars for research and education. More recently in Spring 2021, Dr. Iyengar in collaboration with HBCUs were awarded a $2.25 M funding for setting up a Digital Forensics Center of Excellence over a period of 5 years (2021-2026). He received an honorary Doctor of Science from Poznan University of Technology in Poland in May 2023. He has been awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award for his contribution to the field of Digital Forensics on November 8, 2022, during the 7th INTERPOL DIGITAL FORENSICS EXPERT GROUP (DFEG) MEETING at National Forensics Sciences University, Gandhinagar, Gujarat, India. He has providing the students and faculty with a vision for active learning and collaboration at Jackson State University, Louisiana State University, Florida International University, and across the world. Dr. Iyengar’s career is a distinguished one, marked by his incredible record of success in groundbreaking research, inspirational teaching and excellence in community service. It is his consistent drive to fight for and promote the minority and underrepresented groups which is his passion. 

Dr. Iyengar is a pioneer in several fields of computing and has made fundamental contributions in the areas of information processing for sensor fusion networks, robotics and high-performance algorithms, all relevant to critical event detection systems.

Dr. Iyengar is a Member of the European Academy of Sciences, a Life Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), a Fellow of the Association of Computing Machinery (ACM), a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), a Fellow of the Society for Design and Process Science (SDPS), and a Fellow of the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering (AIMBE). 

Jen Marcus  

Director Taylor Geospatial Engine, St. Louis

Jen Marcus is currently the Director for the newly formed Taylor Geospatial Engine.  The Engine's mission is to support the commercialization process of new geospatial innovations coming from academia and industry.  Prior to standing up the Taylor Geospatial Engine, Jen spent 6 years building and leading the US Federal Government business as a Vice President at Planet Labs.  Prior to her time at Planet, she was a leader in an open source geospatial software company, an innovation leader in a large defense contractor, and a technical consultant at esri.  Jen's entire career has been in geography and the geospatial technology industry, mostly focused on US National Security customers.  She studied Geography as an undergraduate at Kansas State University.  Jen has two teenaged kids, an entrepreneurial and science-minded husband, and a dog named Winston..