Committees, Working Groups, & iCERT Statements

Committee & Working Group Structure

 

iCERT's has two main Committees; the Innovation and Technology Committee, and the Policy Committee, and several specialized Committees.  Every issue / topic managed by iCERT is assigned one of these Committees (they coordinate efforts, and may work in concert  if the matter requires such attention).  To maintain a nimble process, below each Committee are subject-specific smaller Working Groups that are assigned to quickly examine an issue / topic within a defined timeline, and provide an action recommendation for their respective full Committee.

 

Thorough discussion and debate at the Working Group level, which is then reviewed at the Committee level, allows more iCERT members to voice their opinions and provide useful input to the process.  Public actions such as a regulatory filing, intervention, press release, or public iCERT Policy Statement require a Board majority vote.

iCERT Policy Positions, Statements, & Press Releases 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Policy Committee


Chair - Don Brittingham, CEO - Northern Lights Consulting 

 

The primary function of the iCERT Policy Committee is to examine and recommend for board and/or association action, official Industry Council positions on local, state, regional, national and international regulations, legislation, rules or resolutions affecting emergency response technologies.  In practice, these responsibilities are carried out by performing the following functions:

  • Monitoring and reviewing proposed legislation and regulatory rule making;

  • Providing assistance to association staff on matters of policy making;

  • Recommending action to the Board of Directors;

  • Working with iCERT member companies' legislative staff as needed; 

  • Working to resolve inter-association policy conflicts – where appropriate and necessary – to help ensure synergy with leading public safety associations' policy opinions, when not in direct conflict with industry approaches, and

  • Managing Work Groups that may be created to address specific topics or issues.

Innovation & Technology Committee

Chair - Don Ferguson, CEO - NGA911

 

The primary function of the iCERT Innovation and Technology Committee (“ITC”) is to examine and recommend for Board of Directors (“Board”) and/or other association action, iCERT positions on local, state, regional, national, and international technologies, technology initiatives, proposed technology standards, and best practices affecting emergency response technologies.  

The ITC also manages various Work Groups that are created for temporary projects or initiatives.  Work Groups are very efficient often setting a timeline of 90-days to accomplish their tasks.  

 

The ITC’s goals are to support our industry and help move technology innovation into public safety in an orderly and safe manner, and through collaborative guidance and recommendations, to help provide public safety technology users an extra level of confidence to begin using new innovative technologies and approaches without undue delay.  The ITC will also perform other duties, as noted below, and as may be assigned by the Board.   Because technology questions and impacts may overlap with policy questions, the ITC will coordinate with the Policy Committee to insure proper topic management for the benefit of all iCERT’s members.

Marketing Committee

Chair - Holly Blanks, Director - Pulsiam

 

The primary function of the iCERT Marketing Committee (“MARCOM”) is serve as a central point of collaboration and discussion among member companies’ marketing professionals for both the betterment of the marketing processes of the entire public safety technology industry, and the marketing practices of iCERT as a trade association.

 

These overall goals may be achieved via activities internal to MARCOM, recommendations to or collaboration with other Committees or Working Groups, and/or recommendations for Board Action.  MARCOM will also perform other duties, as noted below, and as may be assigned by the Board. 

 

In practice, MARCOM’S responsibilities are:

 

  • Use the trade association format to collaborate and share common concerns

  • Hold periodic monthly or bi-monthly meeting

  • Develop tools and processes to assist with public safety marketing, communication, and education

  • Produce educational / instructional materials / webinars / other materials

  • Offer ideas and shared resources to assist with iCERT’s marketing needs

    • Social media and imaging / webinars

    • PR / public relations / news releases

    • Marketing to / within trade shows and events – gather speaking opportunities for members

    • Web site assistance / ideas

    • Literature and materials

  • Monitoring and reviewing new / proposed and/or changes to emergency response technologies’ marketing standards and best practices;

  • Monitor and advise the membership on new and emerging marketing / communication issues

  • Recommending and assisting with the delivery of technology education programs to the membership

  • Working with iCERT member companies’ marketing staffs as needed

  • Recommending, where possible, clear consensus-based proposals and actions to the Board of Directors.

 

The MARCOM will help the Board in selecting the wisest course of action and preferred alternative, and always preserve and respect the appropriate balance among competing interests of iCERT’s members.

 
 
iCERT Working Groups


Note: Working Group activity, focus, identity, and membership change frequently as issues arise and are managed or reach a conclusion, and group activity follows with the current activity / relevance of an issue to our industry. 

This is an representative list of past and current Working Groups

 

Data Integration Initiative - Update August 2020

 

Co-Chair -  Jay Paull, Vice President - Anterix       

Program Manager - Matt Schreiner, Senior PM, MCP  

How to Join: To apply to participate in this cutting-edge initiative addressing the ongoing needs and future of data integration for use by the public safety community, contact Kim Robert Scovill at executivedirector@theindustrycouncil.org.

Overcoming silos and creating seamless communications across platforms will yield both immediate and long-term benefits for the public, first responders, and iCERT members.  Detailed below is the announcement of iCERT’s new Data Integration Initiative – our signature project for 2020 and beyond. Speaking for the Executive Committee and the Board, we are hoping that as we progress every iCERT member will find a way to become involved and contribute to this significant new initiative.

Concerted discussion by the Data Integration Working Group (DIWG) has revealed four subject areas for iCERT members/participant concentration:

1) Data Value,

2) Existing Data Integration,

3) Data Integration Enablers, and Roadblocks, and

4) Future Data Integration. iCERT Members are dividing their participation along experience, company-centric, and general interests in joining one or more sub-groups to move each area to a productive outcome. The sub-group descriptions follow:

 

1) Data Value – identifying which data integrations provide the most value in terms of improving public safety response. What assigns a “value” (what defines “value” is one of the tasks of this group) to each piece of data in any particular system or sub-system, and its associated dataflows and workflows? What outputs a high-value outcome for a particular set of data and specific data integrations and associated workflows? Identifying which data, when “married together” produces the most value in terms of efficiencies. How can such a concept be used to help all stakeholders (product management, vendors, developers, end-users and citizens) choose which integrations provide the biggest "bang for the buck"?

 

2) Existing Data Integration – what integrations exist today? What are successful examples of data integration (systems, processes, or governance)? What is motivating their development? How do we apply our “formula” to help identify the most valuable solutions? Simply Identify Roles and their associated Dataflows and workflows for incident lifecycle management (Pre-incident, mid-incident, and post-incident). There are potentially thousands of dataflows that can be identified, along with relay points and other items that can be identified as places to streamline the workflow.

 

3) Data Integration Enablers and Roadblocks – what are the roadblocks that keep the existing data integration from creating the real “value” that data integration can produce? What are the enablers that have provided some level of success and improved public safety response? This sub-group will focus on what can be done to reduce the effects of roadblocks and enhance the effects of enablers. This can include governance, funding models, technology, operational processes, or anything that is keeping data integration from being as innovative and broadly implemented as possible.

 

4) Future Data Integration – answering questions about what new integrations will be expected as technology advances? How does the IoT figure into Public Safety Data Integration for future systems? How does A.I. affect which data is important? How do we bridge the gap between data integrations of today with data integration of the future?

 

The sub-groups are selecting leadership and establishing self-directed meeting schedules with goals of producing tangible results in early 2021.

 

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MEMBERS – CALL TO ACTION: New Data Integration Initiative

 

From: Ellen O’Hara, Chair – iCERT June 22, 2020

 

iCERT Announces Data Integration Initiative to Improve Future Public Safety Communications

 

iCERT, is the leading trade association exclusively championing technology interests serving the public safety community, and we’re announcing today the formation of a comprehensive initiative to promote effective integration and use of data in public safety operations. The project will address new and more effective ways to perform mission critical operations as significant amounts of data from an increasing number of source points are generated and delivered to public safety communications centers. The initiative will produce a strategic plan with recommendations related to core areas impacting the future of public safety data such as technology, analysis, management, security and privacy, and funding.

 

We’re seeking volunteers from iCERT Members to contribute and shape this important ongoing and emerging function impacting public safety.

 

Background: Whether the focus is on “NG911”, “public safety broadband or narrowband”, “CAD interoperability” or “IP infrastructure”, the seamless communication and unification of all aspects of the public safety data systems remains a continuing challenge and a significant opportunity, for our industry. With the combined effort of iCERT members and industry resources, iCERT’s Data Integration Initiative intends to: 1) build on previous academic and government analysis; 2) pinpoint areas overdue for action and closure; and 3) make specific recommendations with action plans and timelines to advance the introduction and delivery of public safety technologies to public safety operations.

 

Purpose: iCERT’s Board has approved establishing a comprehensive Member-driven initiative to promote the effective integration and use of data in public safety operations including through existing and emerging 911 systems, communications networks used by first responders, ECC operations, and various other public safety systems.

 

Objectives: The Data Integration Initiative will accomplish three interrelated objectives for iCERT and its Members: 1) it will identify issues preventing innovation in the area of Data Integration that will help to drive innovative new solutions and new revenue opportunities for iCERT Members; 2) it will help to address the operational challenges that have limited the broader implementation of data-centric public safety solutions; and 3) it will continue iCERT’s reputation as an industry leader, increase brand awareness, and help grow membership.

 

Program Overview: Timely access to a variety of data sources will significantly improve situational awareness and increase the efficiency and effectiveness of emergency response services. There are, however, significant challenges regarding the identification, collection, analysis, distribution, utilization, management, and storage of data in public safety operations. Industry, through iCERT’s leadership, is uniquely positioned to address these challenges with the development and/or promotion of public policies, standards, best practices, and training initiatives that will drive innovation in the areas of data-centric public safety solutions.

 

The Program Plan (“Plan”) leading to effective implementation of this initiative includes the following key components:

 

1. Program Management – The Data Integration Initiatives includes a new Data Integration Working Group (“DIWG”), to be comprised of iCERT Members, task managed by a Program Manager (“PM”) and, overseen by iCERT’s Executive Committee.

2. Focus - The Plan will start with a gap analysis (to identify areas of opportunity), various program objectives and associated deliverables/timelines. This will include recommendations regarding public policies (including funding), standards, best practices, educational initiatives, etc., as relevant.

3. Industry & Public Safety Engagement – iCERT will engage with the broader industry and the public safety community (including National organizations like APCO and NENA, Federal entities like National 911 Office, the FirstNet Authority, telecom carriers, and individual PSAPs and agencies), for input to Plan objectives and broader support for Plan implementation. The development of regular conferences, user group meetings, and other public forums focused on Data Integration will enable iCERT to effectively engage the broader community while creating potential new revenue opportunities as well.

4. Communications & Promotion – The Plan will include specific initiatives designed to communicate Program details and progress to participants and key stakeholders, and to otherwise promote the Program and its objectives.

5. Coordination with Other iCERT Activities – The objectives and activities of the Program will be coordinated with other iCERT activities, such as Committees and Working Groups, to leverage resources already available and ensure minimal redundancy of effort.

6. Program Funding – The plan will include a funding plan, and we will work to find creative and innovative new paths to funding.

 

How to Join: To apply to participate in this cutting-edge initiative addressing the ongoing needs and future of data integration for use by the public safety community, contact Kim Robert Scovill at executivedirector@theindustrycouncil.org.

Internet of Things (IoT) 
Chair - Don Ferguson, CEO - NGA911 [ Temporary ]
Charge:

The IoT Working Group will help to create and promote awareness and understanding regarding IoT technology and issues among regulatory agencies within the 9-1-1 industry, public safety authorities and their employees, other NGOs, and within iCERT Members, so that all will better recognize and manage the inevitable evolution of IoT devices into public safety.  The work product for this effort may include Topical Papers, best practice compilations, webinars, appearances at iCERT and other public safety-related meetings, or other communications methods as determined by the Working Group. 

 
Cloud 
 
Chair - Don Ferguson, CEO - NGA911  [ Temporary ]
Charge:
Educate iCERT’s membership and the larger public safety community about Cloud Computing’s current and future impact on 911/public safety technologies and  clarify the relationship between 911/public safety technologies and Cloud technologies.  The work product for this effort may include Topical Papers, best practice compilations, webinars, appearances at iCERT and other public safety-related meetings, or other communications methods as determined by the Working Group. 
Public Safety Communications Interoperability 

 

Co-Chair -  Ray Paddock, Vice President - Inteliquent       

Co-Chair - Al Brisard, President & CEO -  Exacom

 

Charge:
The fast moving nature of this topic has caused this Working Group to evolve repeatedly and rapidly.  In the beginning, the primary function of this Working Group was to examine relevant issues and recommend for iCERT's consideration and/or action, parameters for establishing an official Industry Council program and related positions on conformance issues associated with NG911 technologies as a key factor in the emergency calling and response continuum, in relation to established and/or yet-to-be-formed standards for delivery of NG911 services, systems and networks. This Working Group has no formal approval role.

In practice, these responsibilities are carried out by performing the following functions:

  • Reviewing accepted and burgeoning standards and practices in NG911 technology;

  • Working with a standards development organization to provide industry input and guidance for establishing a conformance program in partnership with a recognized authority; and

  • Recommending any necessary commensurate actions to the iCERT Policy Committee.

This Working group has now taken on additional responsibilities in supporting iCERT's Representation on the NENA NG911 Interoperability Oversight Commission [https://www.theindustrycouncil.org/post/nena-oversight-commission-established ]

More info: https://www.theindustrycouncil.org/post/nena-oversight-commission-established 

Entrepreneurs' Forum

 

Chair - TBD

Charge:
The primary function of the Entrepreneurs' Working Group is to explore the special needs, requirements, and challenges faces by small firms, particularly single-person or small family organizations, that are engaged in public safety services or consulting.  The Working Group meets monthly to discuss topics and set an action agenda, and serves as the "voice" of this genre of member to the larger membership and Board.  The Working Group has no formal approval role.

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Temporarily Inactive Groups

[active in the past with the potential to reengage if needed]

Membership Outreach Committee

The primary function of the iCERT Membership Outreach Committee is to provide advice and recommend actions regarding member recruitment and member service topics to the iCERT Board of Directors. Additionally, this Committee works in concert with the iCERT Governance Committee in the latter's role of maintaining and managing changes to the Bylaws as approved by the iCERT Board of Directors. The Committee has no formal approval role.

In practice, these responsibilities are carried out by performing the following functions:

  • Provide recommendations pertaining to matters of member services to the Board of Directors

  • Contribute as a resource to the Board of Directors in matters involving member recruitment

  • Provide recommendations to the Board of Directors pertaining to matters of member dues

  • Work in conjunction with iCERT staff on direct recruitment efforts and iCERT promotion

Governance Committee


The primary function of the iCERT Governance Committee is to provide advice and recommend actions to the iCERT Board of Directors regarding governance topics. Additionally, the Governance Committee will serve as custodians of iCERT Bylaws, maintaining the document and managing changes to the Bylaws that are approved by the iCERT Board of Directors. The Committee has no formal approval role.  In practice, these responsibilities are carried out by performing the following functions:

  • Maintain the iCERT Bylaws keeping them an accurate reflection of the organization

  • Contribute as a resource to the Board of Directors in matters involving corporate governance

  • Provide recommendations pertaining to matters of governance to the Board of Directors

  • Serve in a role regarding succession planning for the organization

Targeted States Campaign Overview

 

The iCERT Targeted States Campaign is a state-by-state program in support of efforts to secure and protect 911 funding in all its forms. Working in conjunction with state and local officials, the Campaign provides much needed resources to initiate, maintain, and/or bring to fruition state-level efforts to ensure that emergency calling is properly resourced.

Campaign Premise:
Absent proper levels of adequate, stable and foreseeable funding for emergency calling, America's 911 system breaks down. Public safety officials become unable to maintain the equipment and services they need in order to provide safety at the level the public deserves and expects. When properly resourced, however, public safety agencies and the enterprises that support their critical work are able to provide to the public the crucial life-saving services our citizens, residents and visitors require.

iCERT will:

  • Engage state and local government and non-governmental partners,

  • Craft and disseminate tailored educational pieces, and

  • Convene partners and other officials to address key concerns.

Measures of Campaign Success:

  • Shifts in norms - reduced state reliance on 911 funding for unrelated matters.

  • Strengthened organizations - general increase in 911 agency budgets due to regular transfer of dedicated funding.

  • Improved policies - states amending regulations and/or administrative practices to ensure flow of funding.

  • Specific impacts - key examples of properly re-purposed funding.

Emergency Communications Resource (ECR) Working Group


Charge:
The primary function of the Emergency Communications Resource Working Group is to examine and recommend for Policy Committee, Board and/or Association action, official Industry Council positions on local, state, regional, national and international regulations, legislation, rules or resolutions affecting funding of emergency calling and response technology systems and networks. The Working Group has no formal approval role.

In practice, these responsibilities are carried out by performing the following functions:

  • Monitoring and reviewing proposed legislation and regulatory rulemaking;

  • Providing assistance to Association staff on matters of emergency communications resource policy; and

  • Recommending action to the Policy Committee.

z-axis / 911 Location Accuracy Working Group

 

Charge:

This Working Group investigates the various techniques for converting z-axis location information (expressed as HAE) into actionable information for PSAPs (e.g., 3D mapping). Because the FCC has an open docket related to z-axis matters, this Working Group may include making policy recommendations that iCERT could use in consensus-based filings before the FCC.

Convergence and Innovation Working Group


Charge:
The primary function of the Convergence and Innovation Working Group is to examine and recommend for Policy Committee, Board and/or Association action, official Industry Council positions on local, state, regional, national and international regulations, legislation, rules or resolutions affecting matters related to the ubiquitous, unified nature of emergency communications and response technologies, now and into the future. The Working Group has no formal approval role.  In practice, these responsibilities are carried out by performing the following functions:

Monitoring and reviewing proposed legislation and regulatory rulemaking;

  • Providing assistance to Association staff on matters of convergence and innovation policy; and

  • Recommending action to the Policy Committee.

NOTE: THE UNPRECEDENTED IMPACTS OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC HAVE ALTERED THE ACTIVITIES OF MANY, IF NOT ALL, BUSINESSES, INCLUDING iCERT AND MANY OF OUR MEMBERS.  THE GOAL  OF OUR WEBSITE IS TO PROVIDE A USEFUL DESCRIPTION OF THE FEATURES AND BENEFITS OF ICERT MEMBERSHIP.  TO THE EXTENT THAT ANY OF THE ABOVE ARE MODIFIED, OR EVEN ELIMINATED, PERMANENTLY OR TEMPORARILY, OR NEW ELEMENTS ADDED, DUE TO THE NEED TO RESPOND TO THE NEEDS OF OUR MEMBERS,  PUBLIC SAFETY CONCERNS, OR GOVERNMENT MANDATES, PLEASE ACCEPT OUR APOLOGIES FOR ANY INCONVENIENCE. 

WE WELCOME FEEDBACK AS TO ANY INACCURACIES.  

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