The Geoffrey H. Palmer Center for Entrepreneurship and the Law

and Pepperdine University School of Law present the

2015  Drone Entrepreneurship Conference.

Imagine the possibilities and explore new frontiers with
tomorrow’s leaders in drone entrepreneurship. Special guest
speaker Greg McNeal. Expert panels of speakers from startups,
venture capitalists and leading law firms.


Registration is free.



    SEPTEMBER 24th, 2015  

6:30pm to 10:30pm

Cross Campus, Santa Monica, CA


Cross Campus
929 Colorado Ave
Santa Monica, CA 90401

Parking provided by Pepperdine School of Law at:

Wyndham Hotel Parking Garage (up to 40 spaces)

120 Colorado Ave

Santa Monica, CA 90401

Shuttle service will pick up on the Wyndham side of Colorado Ave next to the hotel’s parking garage starting at 5:30PM.


Free parking for first 90 minutes at:

Santa Monica Mall Parking Garage

283 Colorado Ave

Santa Monica, CA 90401

Shuttle service will pick up on the Wyndham side of the Colorado Ave next to the hotel’s parking garage starting at 5:30PM.


Parking options closer to Cross Campus here.


Director of Legal, IP and Policy





Ms. Flores is an engineer-turned lawyer whose past experience includes roles ranging from Corporate Development to Legal at Dropbox, Facebook and Yahoo. Among other accomplishments she was Facebook’s first patent attorney. She heads all legal, IP, and policy efforts at Skycatch, a platform for capturing data at scale using small autonomous drones.


Associate Professor of Law

Pepperdine School of Law







Professor McNeal is an expert on drones and topics related to security, technology and crime. He is a nationally recognized commentator for Forbes and a frequent keynote speaker about technology, law and policy. He has recently co-launched an app, AirMap, to enable safe, legal, hassle free drone flying.


Partner, Co-Founder

Starburst Aerospace Accelerator




Van Espahbodi is co-founder and partner at Starburst Accelerator, where he brings together operators, suppliers, inventors, and venture investors to accelerate innovation in the aerospace industry. As an experienced aerospace professional, he is committed to lowering the barriers for startups to introduce cutting edge technology into the aviation supply chain. 


For more than 15 years Van has worked with governments and their aerospace suppliers in business development leadership roles at NATS and Raytheon. He has helped shape regulations and develop key segments of airspace safety and infrastructure and believes true innovation is a result of collaboration between legacy industry and entrepreneurs.


Prior to working in aerospace, he served as legislative aide in the offices of U.S. Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and U.S. Congressman Adam Schiff. Following his post graduate studies at George Mason University in International Commerce and Public Policy, Van participated in executive management programs at Thunderbird School of Global Management in Arizona and Cranfield School of Management in the UK.



From 2015 to 2025, UAV integration within national air space will account for
$82.1 billion in job creation and economic growth.
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Managing Director

Space Angels Network




Space Angels Network is a professionally managed, member-led, international angel network, providing capital, business and technical guidance and industry intelligence for early-stage aerospace companies.


As managing director, Mr. Blachman sources and facilitates investment opportunities, examines startups’ viability, and supports their Angels in their due diligence. The most exciting part of his work is living in a world of ideas, visiting launch sites, and development hangars; working with determined entrepreneurs and seasoned industry experts to literally shoot for the stars.

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VP of Policy and Legal Affairs





Brendan Schulman, drone policy expert, recently joined DJI, the world leader in innovative aerial technology, as its Vice President of Policy & Legal Affairs.


Mr. Schulman, often known as "The Drone Lawyer," is one of the country's most prominent advocates for clear and reasonable civilian drone regulations. His leadership in the industry includes representing individuals and organizations in landmark civilian drone cases and establishing the country's first unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) legal practice group.


One of the most widely-quoted thought-leaders on the many policy and legal issues surrounding civilian drone operations, Mr. Schulman draws on over 20 years of experience with aerial technologies.  In a key initiative last year, he proposed to the Federal Aviation Administration the creation of a risk-based micro UAS category for the operation of lightweight drones for commercial and other applications.

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CTRL.ME Robotics




Simon Saito Nielsen is a leading expert on current and future drone technology. He is the CEO and Founder of Ctrl Me Robotics, Inc., a robotics company specializing in autonomous multirotor drone technology and servicing some of the world’s largest brands.


As a sought after international speaker on drones, he works to promote the positive use of drones and is constantly exploring new drone uses.


His undergraduate studies in Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering combined with a background in consumer product design has led to an appreciation for advanced technology and simple designs.

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CEO & Founder





He previously served as a Marine Infantry Officer in Iraq and Afghanistan; worked in Goldman Sachs’ Technology, Media & Telecom group; and the US Senate. He has a MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA from NYU.


DroneBase provides on-demand drone services from trained operators. Businesses receive aerial imagery, video, maps and analysis delivered through collaborative software. Investors include: DJI/Accel's SkyFund, Union Square Ventures, Y Combinator, and SV Angel.

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CEO & Co-Founder






Flirtey develops autonomous drones capable of delivering packages to a GPS location. Their technology enables safe and secure operations at scale. Flirtey has partnered with University of Nevada, Reno, a world leading UAV research institute which allows Flirtey to design, manufacture, 3D print and flight test delivery drones on the school’s campus.


Flirtey recently made history with the first FAA approved drone delivery in the U.S., delivering 24 packages of urgent medical supplies in Wise Virginia.