Community Data and Evaluation Specialist Position

JOB TITLE: Community Data and Evaluation Specialist

PROGRAM: Choice Neighborhood/Byrne Justice and Innovation Program

STATUS: Full-Time (Exempt)

REPORTS TO: Data System and Evaluation Administrator

LOCATION: Hollywood


Youth Policy Institute (YPI) transforms Los Angeles neighborhoods using a holistic approach to reduce poverty by ensuring families have access to high quality schools, wrap-around education and technology services, enabling a successful transition from cradle to college and career. Since 2001, YPI has accomplished this by serving families in Los Angeles at 125 sites, 100,000 youth and adults a year throughout the city. YPI has an annual budget of $41 million (including affiliated charter schools) and offers families education and training resources in the areas of afterschool, job training, early childhood education, physical education, adult literacy and ESL, computer literacy, charter schools, and college preparation. YPI also supports efforts to boost the capacity and effectiveness of small grassroots nonprofits that provide essential services for youth.

The Youth Policy Institute is currently seeking a full-time Community Data and Evaluation Manager for the Choice Neighborhood and Byrne Justice and Innovation program. In coordination with the Los Angeles Promise Neighborhood, these two additional Neighborhood Revitalization Initiatives and programs will transform the communities of Hollywood and Pacoima with a continuum of cradle-to-college-and-career services, and will be a zone of choice for families with a wide range of high-quality school options including traditional, charter, pilot and partnership schools. The centerpiece of Choice and Byrne are an innovative public-private partnership that blends diverse funding streams around a core set of outcomes and objectives. Choice/Byrne will identify areas of need regarding community safety, gang intervention, housing needs, economic development and overall community stability.

The Community Data System and Evaluation Manager will coordinate with all YPI/LAPN community partners to ensure all data is tracked effectively. The Community Data System Administrator will work alongside YPI’s Data System & Evaluation Team to determine data system architecture and troubleshoot with subcontractor’s managers, directors, and frontline staff as needed. Responsibilities may include but are not limited to:


• Work with agency’s Data System and Evaluation Administrator to identify strategic data system architecture build out
• Code, test and implement custom reports; roster applications; set up detailed data system manual for proper use
• Provide leadership in effective data management, presentation, and innovative tracking (i.e. Geographic Information System [GIS], spatial analysis, cross-tabulations, quantitative and qualitative data triangulation).
• Conduct trainings for all staff levels
• Ensure that Subcontractor’s Directors and program staff are familiar and understand data system and system tools
• Oversee data collection methodologies and actual data collection using the highest scientific rigor possible
• Assist in maintaining the efforts to outcomes data systems and the custom interfaces to the main organization data system. Assist with system and version upgrades.
• Work with the Data System and Evaluation Administrator in maintaining relationships with YPI Research and Evaluation Department, local partners, internal departments, and the database system vendor
• Develop an in-depth knowledge of the fields and records in related longitudinal databases and the tools used to generate reports, lists, data extracts at the Enterprise level
• Perform other duties related to the position as requested by supervisor or Director of Research and Evaluation


• Bachelor degree from an accredited college or university required, preferably in social science, education, public health or urban planning with a minimum 2 years of commensurate experience
• Master’s degree preferred
• Strong familiarity with demographic, health and economic datasets highly preferred
• Strong understanding of designing, planning, conducting, and evaluating public educational and support service programs
• Experience with methods and procedures for data acquisition, management and quality control
• Experienced GIS user and/or additional mapping software for sophisticated spatial analysis
• Demonstrated record of successful project design, development and management
• Experience working in the education and social service sector and a demonstrated familiarity with the issues and challenges of public education
• Expertise in quantitative and/or qualitative analysis
• Excellent interpersonal, writing and oral communication skills
• Strong project management skills and consultative skills
• Demonstrated leadership ability
• Ability to communicate effectively

Full-time, Monday through Friday. However, some evenings and weekends may be required.

Click here to apply.

GIS/Field Technician Position

GIS/Field Technician, Southern California

Utility Data Contractors, Inc. (UDC), a provider of Field Data Services, is seeking qualified applicants to perform field data collection.

• A minimum of a year of ESRI, ArcGIS Desktop is preferred
• Must have great attention to detail and have the ability to work outdoors and independently
• Working knowledge of Microsoft Office products (including MS Access)
• Understanding of GIS
• Ability to follow specification documents and understand scope of the project
• Effective oral and written communication skills
• Analytical and problem solving skills
• Electric Utility knowledge a plus
• Ability to travel throughout Southern California area a must

This position involves taking a hand held computer and a laser measuring device to the field to read and record angles and heights of electric facility on poles. Applicants must have the ability to work outdoors in a self managed environment, ability to use field computer, dependable vehicle with good driving record and safety conscience. Proficient computer skills are required and some familiarity with electric utility outside plant assets would be helpful. Travel throughout the Southern California area is required.

This position is full time (40 hours a week). Criminal and motor vehicle background checks will be completed for each applicant. Qualified candidates should send their resume to with the subject title of Field Technician. Training will take place at our Agoura Hills, CA field office. Selected candidates must be available to start mid March or early April, 2014. Local candidates preferred. Relocation is not provided for candidates.

Dr. Roger Tomlinson Passed Away


Dr. Roger Tomlinson has passed away.

Tomlinson is generally recognized as the “father of GIS.”  He is the visionary geographer who conceived and developed the first GIS for use by the Canada Land Inventory in the early 1960s. This and continuing contributions led the Canadian government to give him its highest civilian award, the Order of Canada, in 2001. Text for that award reads, “he pioneered its uses worldwide to collect, manage, and manipulate geographical data, changing the face of geography as a discipline.”

Tomlinson tells the story of how this came to be. In the early 1960s he was working as a photo interpreter for Spartan Air Services in Canada. They had a contract to identify the best location for a tree plantation in Kenya. They turned to their young geographer Tomlinson and asked him to develop a methodology. He tried various manual methods for overlaying various environmental, cultural, and economic variables, but all were too costly. He turned to computers and found the solution. Subsequently he sold this approach to the Canada Land Inventory that had the responsibility of using data to assist the government in its land use planning activities. His GIS approach reduced the task from three years and eight million Canadian dollars to several weeks and two million dollars.

He went on to serve the community in many ways. He chaired the International Geographical Union’s GIS Commission for 12 years, where he pioneered the concepts of worldwide geographical data availability. He is a past president of the Canadian Association of Geographers a recipient of its rare Canadian Award for Service to the Profession.

Other awards followed including the James R. Anderson Medal of Honor for Applied Geography (1995) and the Robert T. Aangeenbrug Distinguished Career Award (2005) from the American Association of Geographers. He was the first recipient of the Aangeenbrug award and also the first recipient of ESRI’s Lifetime Achievement Award (1997). National Geographic gave him its rare Alexander Graham Bell Award for exceptional contributions to geographic research (2010). He is an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society and the recipient of multiple honorary doctorates in addition to his own PhD from University College London.

Since 1977 he operated Tomlinson Associates, Ltd., Consulting Geographer which has advised clients like the World Bank, United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, the U.S. departments of Commerce and Agriculture, U.S. Geological Survey, U.S. Forest Service, U.S. Bureau of the Census, the Canadian Forest Service, and numerous U.S. state and Canadian provincial and municipal government agencies. The Order of Canada award documents the impact of that work. “Governments and scientists around the world have turned to him to better understand our environment and changing patterns of land use, to better manage urban development and our precious natural resources.”

His book, Thinking About GIS: Geographic Information System Planning for Managers, provides guidance for both senior managers responsible for a broad range of activities in their organization and the more technical managers responsible for actual implementation of GIS. The 5th edition of this popular book reflects the latest trends in geospatial technology and includes updated case studies. Exercises from Roger Tomlinson’s course Planning for a GIS and a video of the “Planning and Managing a GIS” seminar from the 2012 Esri International User Conference are included on the accompanying DVD.

University Consortium for Geographic Information Science

My Adventure with Google Maps in ArcMap

Many years ago I wondered how to get Google Maps as a background map in ArcMap.  Why did I want to do this?  Because it would be cool and basemaps in ArcMap were limited back then.  However, I never had a chance to try it out … got too busy.  Besides, there are many options now for basemaps and better than Google Maps.  For a government agency, replacing authoritative GIS data with crowd sourced data might not be a good idea.  However, I recently did have some time to explore this (for 8 hours!) and here is my adventure in getting Google Maps into ArcMap.

What better way to figure out how to get Google Maps into ArcMap than by doing a Google search!


I found this one on a GIS forum post.  They said you could display Google Maps in ArcMap with it.  So I downloaded the software and installed.  I was disappointed that there was no option for Google Maps!  After reading some comments on their page, they had to take it out because of Google licensing issues.  The interface does have other choices, some are interesting like a watercolor painted map.

I did discover if you download version 0.2.2, it does work but rather slowly and the satellite option does not work.  Why use an old crippled extension anyway?



I tried this one and it worked … for about 8 minutes, then ArcMap froze and closed.  Thinking it was a fluke, I started ArcMap again and used the tool, but it did the same thing.  Too bad.  Maybe it will work differently for you?  Let me know if you try it.


GoogleMap Download

If you cannot read Vietnamese, here is the translation.

This one worked pretty well.  It downloads the tiles to a cache before they are displayed, however it is a little slow because of that.


I also found the images a little blurry, maybe because it was using lower res images to speed up the cache?  Not sure.  I was using the California State Plane projection in ArcMap and everything lined up fine.  The interface also has a satellite and terrain map option.



They have a polished website, so it gives you the impression their software will be the same.  Their claim is worldwide coverage for Google Maps directly in ArcMap, with the convenience of a low-cost monthly subscription ($490/yr for 1 user).  You can download a free Community Edition for a 7 day trial, so I gave it a go.  Download and install was simple.  When I opened ArcMap I got this:


That’s not good.  Maybe the firewall at work is doing something crazy?  So I installed it on my laptop outside the network and got this:


What?  So I click on Yes and get this:


So much for Arc2Earth!  I give up.  Maybe it will work for you?

So there you have it, my 8 hour quest for Google Maps in ArcMap.  If you find something similar, post a comment so we all can benefit.