Assistant Director / Senior Team
Chris Cruz currently serves as the Department Chair for Park Management, Geospatial and Uncrewed Aircraft Technology. He has taught at West Valley College in California for the last 21 years. Before that, he worked full-time for the National Park Service for 18 years and another 10 years seasonally as a Resource Protection Ranger, he has been fortunate to work in 12 national park units. Some of the positions he has held in the NPS, include SAR-EMS Officer for Yosemite NP, Law Enforcement Specialist and Operations Supervisor- Haleakala NP, Law Enforcement Specialist, Lake Roosevelt NRA, Backcountry Ranger Grand Canyon NP, Backcountry Ranger/Patrol- Lassen Volcanic NP, Patrol Ranger, Grand Tetons and Big Bend NP. He has a BA in Spanish Culture and Civilization from Indiana University and an MA in Environmental Studies from Prescott College, Az. He was a CO-PI on a National Science Foundation Project called iGETT Remote Sensing Education. Chris currently serving as a senior team member of the team for the National GeoTech Center with a focus on UAS Technology. He developed our Uncrewed Aircraft Technology Program which was one of the first two approved such programs in California. He has FAA Part 107 Remote Pilot Certification. He also teaches for Drone University USA –UAS Drone First Responder Course and he maintains the GISP Certification.