David Bignell was selected as the outstanding Geography alumnus because of his service to our security and nation and the service he provides to our Geography program. While attending Wright State, Mr. Bignell became one of the first co-op intern students at the Foreign Technology Division (FTD) located within the National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC), headquartered at Wright Patterson Air Force Base. After graduation, Mr. Bignell worked many jobs at NASIC, including lead imagery analyst, team leader, branch chief, commercial imagery manager, digital production manager, lead photogrammetrist and image scientist. He built a photogrammetric program that is now used across the Federal government and worldwide allied partners. The key to this program was a detailed chain of analysis that would manage data from the point of collection to final report.
Throughout his career, Mr Bignell's primary area of research has been in developing tools and methodologies to disseminate intelligence. He has conducted photogram-metric seminars at all of DoD’s intelligence centers, CIA, FBI, NGA, NASA and allied partners. His work for NASA on the Space Shuttle foam loss was especially critical to the program and safety of astronauts. His method for measuring protective foam loss was eventually published in the Journal of Geospatial Intelligence Review. Mr. Bignell was also a guest lecturer at the 2005 Remote Sensing Forum and was awarded the 2005 Air Force Outstanding Scientist and Engineer Educator Award.
In addition to his DoD efforts, Mr Bignell for many years taught Remote Sensing as an adjunct professor in the Geography Department at Wright State University. The faculty congratulate Mr. Bignell for his many accomplishments and we thank him for paving the way for future NASIC interns from Wright State and for the many years of support and instruction he has provided to our department and students.