First Tuesday at WestGate

First Tuesday at WestGate

Tuesday, September 5, 2023 (4:00 PM - 6:00 PM) (CDT)


Join us for an insightful journey into the world of Draper, a new and rapidly growing presence in our tech park. In this presentation, we'll explore Draper's unique approach to innovation, driven by a rich history of success and a compelling vision for their WestGate operation.

As a nonprofit organization, Draper's mission is to ensure the success of their customers and collaborators. By placing customer missions at the heart of their design and development processes, Draper delivers comprehensive systems solutions that truly make a difference. Their objectivity enables them to provide unbiased assessments of technology and designs, enhancing the quality of solutions developed by various organizations.

At Draper, a multidisciplinary approach fuels their innovative engineering. This presentation will delve into how their collaborative culture leads to groundbreaking advancements and how their expertise extends across diverse domains.

Discover how Draper's commitment to solving the most challenging problems aligns perfectly with the vibrant ecosystem of the tech park. As they embark on their journey within our community, we'll explore the exciting potential for collaboration and growth that lies ahead.

Speaker Bio:

Duane serves as Westgate/Odon, IN Campus Site Lead and Program Manager for Draper Laboratory, a non-profit, defense oriented research laboratory with a 50+ year history of developing guidance and navigation systems for defense and commercial space systems. Duane is establishing Draper’s presence in Indiana and forming critical partnerships with Indiana’s major research universities and with NSWC Crane to develop the space navigation systems for the next 50+ years.

In 2012 Duane was asked by Indiana Governor Mike Pence to establish and serve as Executive Director of the Indiana Office of Defense Development. In this role Duane established a state-wide defense innovation network including major research universities, Industry and defense installations and facilitated several new start-up companies utilizing defense intellectual property.

Duane served 35 years as a U.S. Navy civilian with thirteen years in the Senior Executive Service where he led the Crane Division of the Naval Warfare Center in research, development and acquisition of Department of Defense technologies and weapons systems. Duane helped lead the transformation of NSWC Crane from a naval maintenance and test depot to a nationally recognized DOD R&D laboratory, engineering and innovation center.

Duane holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Purdue University and a Master of Public Affairs from Indiana University. He received the Presidential Award for Meritorious Senior Executive performance, the Navy Distinguished Civilian Service Award, and received the Federal Laboratory Consortium’s Laboratory Director of the Year Award. He was appointed a Sagamore of The Wabash by Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels.

Join us for an hour of snacks, drinks and networking immediately following the presentation.

Come early and enjoy our coworking space for free before the event.

If you have any questions, please feel free to email Samantha Nelson, Program Manager, Purdue @ WestGate, at





WestGate Academy Conferencing and Training Center
13598 East WestGate Dr
Odon, IN 47562 United States
Tuesday, September 5, 2023 (4:00 PM - 6:00 PM) (CDT)
3-5pm Central
*Small Business Events
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