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Will Craig and Carl Reed to be Inducted into URISA's GIS Hall of Fame

September 17, 2009
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PARK RIDGE, IL - The Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (URISA) established the GIS Hall of Fame in 2005 to recognize and honor the most esteemed leaders of the geospatial community. To be considered for the GIS Hall of Fame, an individual’s or an organization’s record of contribution to the advancement of the industry demonstrates creative thinking and actions, vision and innovation, inspiring leadership, perseverance, and community mindedness. In addition, nominees must serve as a role model for those who follow. URISA Hall of Fame Laureates are individuals or organizations whose pioneering work has moved the geospatial industry in a better, stronger direction. The first class of inductees included Edgar Horwood, Ian McHarg, Roger Tomlinson, Jack Dangermond, Nancy Tosta, and the Harvard Lab. Gary Hunter was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2006 and both Don Cooke and Michael Goodchild joined him the following year, in 2007.

Will Craig, GISP and Carl Reed, PhD will join this esteemed group during URISA’s 47th Annual Conference in Anaheim later this month.

Dr. William J. Craig is widely regarded to be one of the pioneers of urban and regional information systems and GIS. He began as system manager and project director of one of the world’s first State-wide GIS-the Minnesota Land Management Information System. Since then he has become internationally known for his work of almost 40 years with the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs at the University of Minnesota, and for his dedication in promoting major national and global initiatives associated with data sharing, multipurpose cadastres, census data, spatial data infrastructures, public participation GIS, and the GIS code of ethics.

Professionally, he earned his M.A. and Ph.D. in geography from the University of Minnesota and is a certified GIS Professional. He began his career at the University of Minnesota in 1967 and continues there today as the Associate Director of the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs. He co-founded University of Minnesota’s Master of GIS professional degree program in 1997.

He has been extremely active in the promotion of geographic information and he has held numerous key appointments including: President of URISA (1986-87); President of the University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (1997); President of the National States Geographic Information Council (2009-10); Chair the inaugural nation GIS/LIS Conference (1988); Chair of the Minnesota Governor’s Council on Geographic Information (1992-93); Chair of the MetroGIS Coordinating Committee (2000-02); member of the Mapping Science Committee of the National Research Council (2000-2005); and member of the National Research Council’s Committee on Land Parcel Databases (2006-07).

Will Craig has been a tremendous source of momentum and guidance on the development of ethics standards for the GIS professional community. The GIS Certification Institute’s Code of Ethics and Rules of Conduct are very much a product of his early work and consistent activity in this area. He has contributed to countless conferences and seminars over the past 40 years as both a committee member and participant, not only in North America but also as an invited keynote speaker in Australia, New Zealand and the UK.

He has been a champion of Public Participation GIS (PPGIS), starting with Citizen Access Day at the 1994 URISA Conference and culminating in his 2002 book Community Participation and Geographic Information Systems. Between those dates and subsequently he produced numerous research articles on the nature of PPGIS. He has inspired others to take up and extend that work in their conferences and research.

His outstanding dedication and professional service have been recognized by his peers with the URISA Leadership Award in 1989, the URISA Horwood Distinguished Service Award in 1993, the Minnesota State GIS Honor Roll Lifetime Achievement Award in 1995, the University of Minnesota Academic Staff Award in 1998, and the Outstanding Service Award from the National States Geographic Information Council in 2007.

In summary, Will Craig has made an outstanding lifetime contribution to the promotion and application of geographic information to deliver better outcomes for society. Over the past four decades his activities have been such that he has developed a network of professional colleagues around the world who hold him in the highest regard. He has always had the ability to provide insightful and thoughtful comments when offering his views and he is considered to be a true gentleman of our discipline. For young professionals there could be no better role model than Will Craig and as such he is a thoroughly deserving nominee to the URISA GIS Hall of Fame.

Dr. Carl Reed, the CTO and Executive Director of the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) Standards program, is a recognized geospatial technology visionary and evangelist. He is a leading advocate for the development and use of geospatial standards that enable the effective use of geospatial content and services anytime, anywhere. Reed has been a geoprofessional for 40 years.

Carl began his GIS career in 1969 while in university, programming an interactive GIS application for mapping meteorological observations. This application is arguably one of the first interactive mapping applications. In 1977 and 1978, he designed and programmed the Map Overlay and Statistical System (MOSS). MOSS was the first fully interactive, vector based GIS. By the early 1980s, MOSS was in use by dozens of Federal, state, and local agencies. MOSS was also the first open source GIS activity, predating GRASS by several years. Dr. Reed received his PhD in Geography, specializing in GIS technology and systems architectures, from the State University of New York at Buffalo in 1980.

In 1985, Reed led the GenaMap design and development team. GenaMap (originally DeltaMap) was the first commercial UNIX based GIS product. GenaMap had a number of technical firsts, such as the use of R-Trees for spatial indexing, continuous processing of tiled geographic databases, integrated vector raster processing, and on the fly projection and units transformation. GenaMap still exists and is used heavily in the location services industry.

In late 1987, at the request of David Schell, Reed led a project to demonstrate that seamless interoperability could be achieved between two disparate geospatial systems: GenaMap and GRASS integrated capability. This project convinced Schell that geospatial interoperability could happen. This work was a key factor in his decision to start the OpenGIS Consortium (now the Open Geospatial Consortium). Dr. Reed has worked on geospatial standards since 1994. Early on, he recognized that in order for the geospatial community to grow and prosper, the community needed standards that enabled interoperability and broke down proprietary silos of data ownership. In 1997, along with Allen Doyle, Reed convinced the OGC membership to focus their standards work on loosely coupled Web services standards.

Reed joined OGC staff in 2001. Since then, he has contributed to numerous international standards, including not only those of the OGC, but other e-business and Internet standards as well. To insure harmonization of geospatial standards across information communities, he actively participates in and collaborates with other standards organizations, including OASIS, NENA, ISO, W3C and the IETF. Reed was one of the original developers of GeoRSS. Currently, Reed is an active participant in the NENA Next Generation 9-1-1 activity. Reed has contributed to numerous geo standards, including the OASIS Common Alert Protocol (CAP), the location extension for DHCP, the OGC Web Map Feature Interface Standard, KML 2.2, GeoRSS, and the Mobile Location Platform API. Reed currently participates in numerous editorial and advisory boards, including the GeoWeb 2009 planning committee, is the OGC alternate to the GSDI Board of Directors, and is working on numerous book chapters.

In recognition of his contribution to the GIS industry, in 1996, Reed was voted by his peers as one of the top ten most influential people in the GIS industry.

For more information about URISA’s GIS Hall of Fame, visit www.urisa.org/hall_of_fame or contact URISA at 847/824-6300.

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