Dr. Jason Derenick is Vice President of Technology at Exyn Technologies, Inc. A spin-off of the General Robotics, Automation, Sensing and Perception (GRASP) Laboratory at the University of Pennsylvania, and founded by world-renowned robotics expert Professor Vijay Kumar. Exyn is commercializing technologies to enable safe, reliable and scalable autonomous flight in complex commercial environments. A defining aspect of Exyn’s aerial robots (or smart drones) is that they are truly “self-contained” and do not require access to infrastructure such as GPS or wireless communications in order to carry out their missions. Dr. Derenick brought nearly 15 years of direct experience in autonomous vehicle systems when he joined Exyn as its first technical employee in 2015. He is responsible for defining and driving its strategic technical agenda and building its core technologies. Prior to joining Exyn, Dr. Derenick was employed by United Technologies Corporation (2011-2015) where he helped pioneer the software behind Matrix Technology – Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation’s autonomous system brand. For his contributions, he was recipient of UTC’s 2013 George Mead Medallion which is the corporations highest recognition bestowed upon an individual for achievement in science and/or engineering. He currently holds three patents with an additional eight pending in the area of autonomous vertical take-off, and landing aircraft and has been published in a variety IEEE forums. Among other notable achievements, he is a veteran of the 2007 DARPA Urban Challenge and was a member of the only Track B team to successfully complete the final event. Dr. Derenick was a post-doctoral fellow under MAST-CTA (2009-2011) in the GRASP Laboratory at the University of Pennsylvania, and he holds a Ph.D. (2009) and M.S. (2005) from Lehigh University.