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R2 Network for First Responders Officially Launches

Starting in April, the collaborative effort announced last year will begin rolling out features for finding public safety technology products, industry events, grants and educational resources.

Closeup of a firefighter holding a radio.
Six months after announcing the R2 Network for helping connect public safety officials with technology, the project is officially launching at the beginning of April.

The network’s portal, where interested parties can sign up to access features as they’re rolled out, is live. Starting in April, some of those features will include:

  • Product Builder, where vendors can showcase their products and match up with first responders with specific needs
  • Event Resource, a directory for finding public safety industry events and connecting with other R2 Network members who are planning to attend
  • Grant Finder, where companies and agency officials can find funding opportunities
  • R2 Learn, a compendium of resources to help vendors and public safety officials find out about challenges and opportunities in their space
The network is a product of collaboration between Responder Corp., an organization whose activities include investing in public safety tech companies; the first responder data company RapidSOS; Orleans Parish Communication District in Louisiana and the Western Fire Chiefs Association.

“Engagement during our pre-launch stage validated the importance and need of the R2 Network for the public safety community,” said Bryce Stirton, Responder Corp.’s president, in a statement. “Today we begin delivering resources with the launch of product features that will bring public safety into the future by connecting the industry and ensuring access to mission-critical technology.”

The R2 Network is funded through a grant from the Economic Development Administration, the National Institute of Standards and Technology and the First Responder Network Authority.

Ben Miller is the associate editor of data and business for Government Technology. His reporting experience includes breaking news, business, community features and technical subjects. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in journalism from the Reynolds School of Journalism at the University of Nevada, Reno, and lives in Sacramento, Calif.
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