Open Mic and Other Acts of Safety – Smart Devices Making A Difference In the Most Unexpected Urban Environments

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Session I, Track A | 9:20-10:20AM


The role that smart technology plays in today’s urban environment is critical and ever-changing. The current technology set is not enough to stay ahead of all the current known threats and evolving future threats.

During this session, we will discuss current and emerging technologies, their deployments and new ways to look at problems that can be addressed by emerging public safety solutions. We will also look at the various sources of public safety technology (from public and private sectors – to include the Department of Defense), the different applications, and the various environments that are a part of the smart city urban installation environment.


Kathleen Griggs

President and Founder, Databuoy

Kathleen is the President & Founder of Databuoy. She is a former Navy Engineer and Technical Agent for the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). As a DARPA Agent she was responsible for the Warfighter Visualization, Smart Modules, and Distributed Robotics Programs. She led a range of impactful technologies efforts: video mosaicking and geo-registration, augmented reality, head-mounted displays, small robots and wearable computing. Her successes include a rapid fielding of real-time video geo-spatial registration technology that prompted a paradigm shift in air targeting operations.

Most recently, Griggs has shifted her focus to public safety technology and deployment in the private sector. Its ShotPoint® gunshot localization system is a breakthrough technology that can vastly improve the response of emergency services to an active shooter event over current practice in the security industry. ShotPoint® uses networked acoustic sensors that automatically detect, locate, and video capture images and reports the exact time and location of the source of gunfire instantaneously. She has been able to use the sensors to track vehicles on the road as well as in the air (drones up to 300’) as well as created a way to detect and analyze voice patterns. Her team is on the cutting edge of not just safety and security, but in economic development, with the technology, she is working with.

Laura Jones

CEO and Founder, Regent Power

Laura Jones is CEO of Regent Power, LLC. Regent Power began as a startup Laura officially launched January of 2015 and has been working with various cities and municipalities in the area of integrating energy storage, DC fast-charging stations with energy storage backup, mobile energy storage.  

In addition, in partnership with Databuoy, Laura has co-developed a proprietary and patent-pending Smart City Street lighting system with gunshot detection, surveillance cameras, public use wi-fi and integrating sensor stacks for IoT applications. She has experience living near a community with high crime rates and is eager to help areas like that to be safer and more productive as a community. Her leadership takes on the norm and creates opportunities where they are not obvious. She understands the marriage of safety and security needs economic development. She believes that you cannot have one without the other.

Prior to leading Regent Power, Laura was the global sales director involved with the electric car movement and battery automation. She also led work with MoDOT, GM, Magna, Tacom, and CATL. She has received several technical honors in her field.  Jones holds a B.S. from Washington University in St. Louis and serves on Board as treasurer for St. Louis Regional Clean Cities, and is a member of the Sustainable Electrified Transportation Center (SELECT).

Gene Foster

VP of Business Development & Project Manager, Regent Power

Gene Foster has an extensive background in planning and managing cross-functional business operations and technology projects. He is an analytical and conceptual thinker who effectively partners best-of-class alliance partners to assess opportunities, facilitate strategic decisions, and drive successful implementations.

Gene has been involved with grant writing and proposals for DC charging stations in Missouri’s corridors as well as IoT infrastructure planning. He has been playing a key role in initiating a smart streetlight pilot in St. Charles, MO. He has managed the partnerships in creating a prototype light fixture from inception. He was also key in designing an electric vehicle charging infrastructure across major corridors in Missouri. His forward thinking will be a benefit to the organization to bring cities to the forefront of the smartest cities in the US. Gene’s ability to assess complex situations and identify appropriate solutions underscores his ability to gain meaningful insight and follow-up with thorough analysis. He is particularly skilled at business development, government contracts, and partner alliances.   

He also desires to bring about change in the community. His ideas to bring residents in to train and equip them with the knowledge to perform technical tasks will generate real jobs in the community, and the smart street lights aim to help. In order for him to do so, he will partner with not for profit organizations to offer education and job training in the various technologies that would benefit them and the community through the light fixtures.  

He has managed a broad array of projects in industries ranging from energy storage, battery automation, and test equipment to micro-grids in Africa.  Projects include GM, Magna, Tacom, eCAMION, Sustainable Electrified Transportation Center (SELECT), and manages Regent Power’s growing portfolio, along with founder Laura Jones.

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