David Merrick – Director, Florida State University Emergency Management and Homeland Security Department

     Mr. Merrick developed and oversees CDRP's Disaster Incident Research Team, which deploys to disaster impact areas to perform field research on disaster and emergency management. This team consists of EMHS/CDRP staff as well as FSU students who have valid research agendas or projects, and is partnering with other FSU departments to perform multidisciplinary research and data collection.  He teaches graduate and undergraduate courses on EM Planning and Policy, Disaster Systems, and Unmanned Aircraft Systems.

     Mr. Merrick developed EMHS’s unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) courses and curriculum. He is part of the team that developed the EMHS/CDRP UAS capability for use in disaster management and critical incidents, and has led deployments performing this work in Florida as well as Texas, Haiti, Belize, and Jamaica. He is a certified UAS operator with an emphasis on professional aviation operations in a variety of environments.

     As part of the applied research team at CDRP, Mr. Merrick has extensive experience in emergency management at all levels of government, incident command, training and exercise development, facilitated planning processes, and has provided technical assistance on a variety of government and private sector EM projects.

     Mr. Merrick has a bachelor's degree from Florida State University and a Master's in Humanitarian Relief and Disaster Logistics from the Florida Institute of Technology.


CLASS: Dogs and Drones: Nose to the Ground, Eyes in the Sky

     Former FBI Forensic Canine Operations Specialist and Scent Evidence K9 Founder-CEO, Paul Coley, is joined by David Merrick, FSU Emergency Management and Homeland Security Director, to discuss the integration of UAS drone technology and K9 search operations. Coley and Merrick will present the benefits that drone overwatch and reconnaissance bring to K9 trailing deployments and how they are working together to cover more territory, maximize search efforts, and keep K9 Units safer on the trail.

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