Mr. Lavrakas is a leading authority in the field of Global Positioning System technology and an expert in marine science technology, including fishery information systems and wave energy.  He currently serves as a subject matter expert on GPS to the U.S. Department of Transportation. He has spoken on GPS and its applications at numerous national and international conferences, published articles, and served as an expert consultant to corporations, law firms, and trade periodicals.

John Lavrakas’s thirty-five year career in GPS has taken him through all aspects of GPS, from the development and maintenance of the Control Segment through the development of military and civilian user applications to implementation of significant new capabilities in GPS, including civil performance monitoring and the GPS Integrity Anomaly Database.  He has led engineering projects at a number of companies, acting as principal investigator on research and development projects, successfully developing and marketing commercial satellite navigation software, and service as president of his own company.  He is a senior leader in the Institute of Navigation, having recently served as its President.  His deep understanding of satellite navigation system issues is reflected in recent presentations at international satellite navigation conferences:

  • “A Case for Updating the GPS Standard Positioning Service Performance Standard”
  • “Implementing Civil Monitoring in Wake of the New Policy on GPS”
  • “Defining the Elements of a Civil GPS Monitoring Service”
  • “Planning the Future of GPS”

Mr. Lavrakas received his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in mathematics from Harvey Mudd College and the Claremont Graduate School in Claremont, California.  He has also continued post-graduate study in electrical engineering at the University of Colorado. In 2011, he was selected as Oregon’s Small Business Person of the Year by the U.S. Small Business Administration [video].


  • Forty years experience in the technical field including systems and software engineering, systems architecture development, systems design and test,  expert consulting services, and technical instruction.
  • Thirty-five years in GPS alone, including ten years in GPS user equipment and applications, sixteen years with the GPS control segment, ten years in tracking applications, eight years in commercial GPS applications, and twenty-four years in GPS mission planning, performance assessment, and policy.
  • President of Advanced Research Corporation, provider of satellite navigation consulting services and developer of GPS-based asset location solutions for commercial industry.
  • Subject matter expert on GPS for the U.S. Department of Transportation
  • Senior leader in the Institute of Navigation, including ION fellow, past President, past Chair of the Satellite Division, Western Regional Vice President, Space Representative, and co-founder of the Rocky Mountain Section.  While serving as Satellite Division Chair, sponsored the establishment of an ION Executive Fellow, initiated the renaming of the Satellite Division annual meeting from GPS to GNSS, supported the development of navigation educational materials for middle schools, sponsored establishment of the ION Outreach Committee, and sponsored the development of the Mini-Urban Challenge high school robotics competition.
  • Legal expert on patent and criminal litigation cases involving GPS and navigation
  • Principal co-author of the GPS Civil Monitoring Performance Specification, developed for the US Department of Transportation.
  • Part of GPS integrity failure modes and effects analysis (IFMEA) team, and co-developer of the GPS Integrity Anomaly Database, providing a historical record of GPS service anomalies.
  • Part of team to implement the GPS Operations Center (formerly GPS Support Center) at Schriever AFB, and served as Director of Operations Support for its first six years.
  • Co-established the GPS Interagency Forum for Operational Requirements with Air Force Space Command and the Dept of Transportation, authoring its charter and serving as IFOR Secretariat.
  • Technical experience includes systems engineering, design, programming, and testing GPS receiver equipment, differential GPS, automatic vehicle location system development, satellite control software, GPS ground transmitters, and mission planning and analysis software.
  • International experience includes marketing of vehicle location services in Venezuela, Canada, the and Caribbean, and three years living in The Netherlands.  Conversant in French and Dutch, with rudimentary understanding of Spanish and German.
  • Extensive experience in GPS applications, including security, railroad, meteorological and oceanic sensors, and commercial trucking.
  • Well known and well regarded in the GPS industry.  Authored numerous courses in GPS, including courses on civilian applications of GNSS, GPS augmentation systems, vehicle tracking for Navtech Seminars and serving as guest lecturer on GPS at the US Air Force Academy.
  • Co-authored more than 35 papers and articles, including articles for GPS World and GPS Solutions magazines.  Won Best Paper award for 1996 sponsored by the GPS International Association.

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