Susan Roberts

Susan Roberts
Vice President at American Robotics

BIOGRAPHY

Dr. Susan Roberts is an aviation executive, specializes in disruption and innovation to pursue new business strategies and models. She is currently the Vice President of Strategy and Business Development for Ondas Holdings. The Group is pursuing a future where assured, autonomous flight is supported by an ecosystem of technological, regulatory, and cooperative elements.   Susan is passionate about challenging the assumptions that prevent the adoption of a new way of life enabled by new technologies including robotics, artificial intelligence, and smart interoperability.  

Prior to joining Ondas, Susan led commercial innovation for Panasonic Avionics Corporation, leading the company’s efforts from a bespoke business model to a managed services business model. Susan enjoys being a thought leader in innovation, business models, corporate self-disruption and growth, and cultural change. 

In 2016, Susan launched an aviation start-up backed by General Electric. Susan and her co-founder established AiRXOS, Inc., a GE Venture, pursuing opportunities in the unmanned aviation space after winning a General Electric innovation challenge. Susan led the company through two rounds of funding and initial sales prior to GE realigning the subsidiary into a larger business unit.  

At Orbital Sciences (now ATK), where Susan spearheaded development of multiple actuator programs for commercial and government customers across all launch vehicles. These cyber-physical devices performed with high precision and were designed and manufactured to NASA-level tolerances.  

Susan started her career as an engineer developing control schema for Honeywell’s large oil refinery customers.   The autonomous solutions allowed refineries optimized control scheme that ensure safety and efficiency of refinery operations. Advanced control algorithms allowed for precise and accurate batch processing to ensure high quality products were outputted from the operations. 

Susan holds a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering and a master’s and a doctorate in business administration.  Her doctoral research focuses on the psychology of innovation, resilience, and work engagement. Susan is adept in inspiring teams, facilitating change, mentoring, and coaching. She recently led a 10-week pilot program to embed a new operating model across product, engineering, delivery, and commercial disciplines resulting in resulting in four newly defined products, better collaboration, and new processes for product introduction. 

Susan currently serves as the Treasurer for the Association of Uncrewed Systems International (AUVSI) Board of Directors and has recently accepted an invitation to work on their finance committee as well.  Previously, Susan was a founding member of Gov. Rick Snyder’s (Michigan) unmanned strategic task force focused on economic development.