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John "JC" Coffey

Executive Director, Unmanned Systems, Cherokee Nation Technology Portfolio

John “JC” Coffey is currently the Executive Director, Unmanned Systems for the Cherokee Nation Technologies Portfolio where he established and leads their unmanned program supporting several inter-agency and industry organizations in advancing unmanned systems in worldwide operations including Polar ice-breaker support.  He provides several governmental teams guidance for strategic and program planning, system test & evaluations, system engineering, program transition to operation.  He is a guest lecturer, and has published several reports and articles on unmanned systems.  He is a member of ASTM’s F-38, RTCA’s SC-228, Drone World Expo’s Advisory Board, AUVSI’s Board of Directors, Advocacy Committee and was awarded 2015 AUVSI Member of the Year.  He is also the cofounder of the Federal UAS Tribal Interest Group.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of  Notre Dame, a MBA from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, a Masters Certification in Government Contracting from George Washington University and numerous certifications from the Defense Acquisition University. 

He is a Kentucky Colonel and decorated combat Naval Aviator and Department of Defense Acquisition Professional with over 30 years of experience in flight operations, test & evaluation, systems engineering, program management and strategic planning, including involvement in government procurement programs.  A guest lecturer having published several reports and articles on unmanned systems, he has FAA ATP and Flight Instructor qualifications and has flown over 4,500 hours in several aircraft including the T-2, T-34, T-44, P-3, A-4, RC-12, H-2, H-46, H-52, H-60, S-3, F/A-18 and MZ-3A.