One of Canada’s leading drone-delivery companies is welcoming an American UAS pro to its ranks – a pro with American regulatory experience.
Drone Delivery Canada announced this week the hiring of former FAA official Jim Williams in the newly created position of Director of Regulatory Affairs, USA.
Williams brings more than 30 years of aerospace experience to the position and recently served as Manager of the FAA’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration Office. Williams also served as the FAA’s Director of Systems Engineering, leader of the Integrated Product Team for ATC Communications, and executive lead for all FAA UAS integration activities.
“As we move ahead to solidify the roll out in international markets, Jim’s industry knowledge and experience in the United States of America will assist DDC greatly,” DDC CEO Tony Di Benedetto said.
Di Benedetto added that Williams will oversee the company’s regulatory compliance and coordinate with the FAA at DDC’s new American component, Drone Delivery USA, to expedite the export of its drone delivery technology.
The announcement comes at an opportune time for DDC following the company’s successful rollout of its Raven and Condor drones, which are expected to complement the Sparrow drone lines and add bulkier payloads and better distance capabilities. The Raven is expected to have a payload capacity of 20 lbs. and offer a distance of more than 12 miles. The Condor will boast a payload capacity of 400 pounds and boasts a distance of more than 62 miles.
“These new aircraft will substantially enhance our service offering to customers and are seen as potential game-changers for the deployment of highly automated drones in a variety of industries and geographies. We will report further detailed technical progress on these initiatives later in Q3, 2018,” Di Benedetto added.
Prior to joining the FAA, Williams served as a flight test engineer and a production liaison engineer for the Lockheed Georgia Company’s C5, C-141 and C-130 programs. He also worked for NASA in Mission Control during the initial flights of the space shuttle.
“Since I left the FAA, my vision has been to do everything I can to help enable routine unmanned aircraft operations in the U.S. Joining the Drone Delivery Canada team is an amazing opportunity for me to realize the vision of making drone delivery in the U.S. a reality,” Williams said.