Our project, and team, started out several years ago as a simple conversation between Alex and Mark about the concept of a crowd-funded automated UFO surveillance network. Since then our group has grown slowly but surely through targeted invitations to specific individuals and through people with relevant expertise enthusiastically volunteering once they learned about UFODATA. Despite our varied backgrounds, we were all attracted by the simplicity of the concept and its potential power to break through the UFO taboo and do some real science on the problem.

When we began we had little idea how many different kinds of expertise would be required to put UFODATA’s simple idea into practice – including scientific, engineering, computing, organizational, and legal. We now have amassed considerable expertise in many of these areas, but there are still important gaps in our current and future needs that we very much hope others who are equally attracted to the simplicity and power of our idea will step up to fill. If you think you can help and would like to put your name forward for consideration please click the Volunteer to Help button.

Board Members Volunteer to help UFODATA

Mark Rodeghier
Dr. Mark Rodeghier - Director

Mark Rodeghier, Ph.D., is the scientific director and president of the J. Allen Hynek Center for UFO Studies, a position he has held since 1986. He has been active in the UFO field since 1974 and has done research and investigation in a variety of areas, including vehicle interference cases, abduction cases, especially the psychology and sociology of abduction experiencers, physical trace events, scientists' beliefs about the UFO phenomenon, and the Roswell crash. He is the associate editor of the Journal of UFO Studies and a consulting editor of the Journal of Scientific Exploration.

Alexander Wendt
Prof. Alexander Wendt

In his day job Alexander Wendt is Professor of Political Science at the Ohio State University. He received his Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota in 1989, and taught at Yale University, Dartmouth College, and then the University of Chicago before coming to Ohio State in 2004. His research in political science focuses on philosophical aspects of world politics, and he is well known in his field for several important articles and his book, Social Theory of International Politics (Cambridge University Press, 1999), which won the International Studies Association's award for 'Best Book of the Decade' in 2006.

Read More

Philippe Ailleris
Philippe Ailleris - Director

Philippe Ailleris is a Project Controller at the Space Research and Technology Centre of the European Space Agency, in the Netherlands. His childhood fascination with astronomy and space exploration led to his current employment in the space sector, and interests in unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP) and the search for extraterrestrial life.

In 2009, he founded as personal work and currently leads the UAP Observations Reporting Scheme Project, which aims at collecting UAP reports from the astronomical community. His involvement in the project UFODATA is entirely private.

Read More

Leslie Kean
Leslie Kean

Leslie Kean is an investigative journalist and author of UFOs: Generals, Pilots and Government Officials Go On the Record (Crown Publishing Group, 2010), a New York Times bestseller which includes a foreword by John Podesta and has received endorsements from numerous scientists, such as former White House OSTP Director Neal Lane and physicist Michio Kaku. Since the release of UFOs, Kean has been featured on CNN, MSNBC, FOX, The Colbert Report, NPR; and in USA Today, US News and World Report, the Columbia Journalism Review, the Huffington Post, and The Arizona Republic.

Read More

Christopher Mellon
Chris Mellon

Christopher Mellon spent nearly 20 years in the federal government. As a Legislative Assistant for Senator William S. Cohen he drafted the legislation establishing the US Special Operations Command. In the Pentagon, he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Security and Information Operations during the Clinton Administration, becoming the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Intelligence in the Clinton and Bush Administrations.

Read More

Consulting Scientists and Engineers

David W. Akers
David W. Akers,  Professional Engineer

David W. Akers, PE (retired) is a Licensed Professional Electrical Engineer, BSEE (electronics), BA (communications). He is the owner of the Polyarts Company, an engineering consulting and electronics design firm based in Washington state, USA. Specialty areas include forensic investigations and problem solving for state and Federal agencies, new product design and initial production for numerous industrial/commercial clients, microprocessor-based hardware/software design and integration, teaching at college and university levels in electronics, computer and engineering sciences, and consultation on vocational college curriculum development.

Read More

Eamonn Ansbro
Eamonn Ansbro

Eamonn Ansbro, Masters and PhD in Astronomy, Planetary Space Science Research Institute (UK) is a fellow of the Royal Astronomical Society. He is Director of Kingsland Observatory in Ireland which is involved in planetary research, SETI and instrumentation. He has made a number of discoveries in astronomy and has a number patents in instrumentation. He is a member of the UK SETI Research network involved in the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence within the Solar System. Kingsland Observatory operates an all sky monitoring and tracking system for detecting anomalous observational phenomena.

Read More

Hakan Kayal
Hakan Kayal

Hakan Kayal is a professor for space technologies at the Julius-Maximilians-University Würzburg, Germany. His current main research interests are in the fields of design, construction and operation of space systems, especially nano satellite missions and instruments for scientific applications, increased autonomy for space systems, and the search for extraterrestrial intelligence as well as research on unknown aerospace phenomena. He is responsible for teaching several courses in the field of space technologies and, especially, the operations of spacecraft.

Read More

Ron Masters
Ron Masters

For Ron Masters, Ph.D., interest in unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP) was sparked as a young boy while viewing star fields at night in the U.S. western desert. It wasn't the thought of other worlds, but instead watching with wonder as one of those stars, "stationary" for tens of minutes, began to move across the sky with an irregular pattern, and then faded from view after about 5 minutes of constant movement. Naturally curious, what could this have been? Many decades later, Ron's interest was reaffirmed with the viewing of a large, dark triangle hovering over a populated Midwest suburb.

Read More

Robert Powell
Robert Powell

Robert Powell has been the Director of Research at the Mutual UFO Network (MUFON) since 2007. He is an active Field Investigator in the state of Texas having completed over 100 investigations and is a MUFON Star Team member. He is one of two authors of the detailed radar/witness report on the Stephenville Lights. Robert is active with FOIA requests to various government organizations to obtain information on historical cases. He is a co-author of a book published in July 2012: UFOs and Government: A Historical Inquiry. Robert currently resides in Austin, Texas.

Read More

Erling P. Strand
Erling P. Strand

Erling P. Strand received a M.SC.EE. degree in 1981 at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. Since 1988 he has been a lecturer and is an Asst. Professor at the School of Computer Sciences, Østfold University College, in Norway. He is also one of the founders of Project Hessdalen and, since 1993, the project manager. The main goal of the Project is to learn more about the mysterious lights in the Hessdalen valley in Norway.

Read More

Dr. Massimo Teodorani
Prof. Alexander Wendt

Dr. Massimo Teodorani is an astrophysicist from North Italy. He received his Ph.D. in Astronomy from the Bologna University with a specialization in stellar physics. He has been working as a researcher at the Naples Observatory and at the INAF Medicina Radiotelescopes. Being experienced both in optical and radio astronomy, he carried out studies on eruptive stars of many kinds, exoplanets and SETI. His approach in research is both observational/experimental and interpretative/theoretical. He is also an expert in the physics of anomalous plasma phenomena of geophysical interest such as the Hessdalen phenomenon in Norway and similar recurrent phenomena in the world.

Read More

Consulting Partners

Kevin McCray
Kevin McCray

Kevin McCray, CAE, has more than 30 years of non-profit experience including nearly 20 years in senior management roles. He has also served in fundraising, marketing, information, publishing, and education roles. In his non-profit management roles he has led initiatives to develop industry standards, best suggested practices, and significant upgrades to a voluntary certification program. He led an award-winning effort to develop computer-based business management tools for trade professions.

Read More

Jose Lay
Jose Lay

Jose Lay is the International Affairs Director of the CEFAA, the Chilean government agency investigating UAP. It is a branch of the General Administration of Civil Aeronautics, Chile's FAA, situated within the Air Force. The group is directed by General Ricardo Bermudez. Fluent in many languages, Lay has been working with this office since 1979. Responsible for all communications with other countries, he is currently securing formal agreements with other official UAP agencies around the world and advising on the development of such departments within some countries. This international cooperation generates uniform standards for protocols and policies for data analysis, transcending any political differences, and allows for cooperative study of this worldwide phenomenon.

Silent Advisors

The UFODATA team also includes several ‘silent partners’: scientists, engineers, technology professionals, and interested researchers who are prepared to lend a hand, but because of the cultural stigma attached to UFOs - or because of a personal preference for anonymity - have chosen to keep their involvement private.

Full Professor

A full professor at a major US research university, specializing in Artificial Intelligence and Video Surveillance.

Attorney

An attorney at an international financial institution headquartered in Washington D.C.

Astronomer

An astronomer at a major US research facility.

Philanthropy Leader

An internet entrepreneur and senior leader of a global network of young philanthropists.