GIS Council Meeting May 22

Dear California GIS Community,

As many of you know, it has been a couple of years since the California GIS Council has met.  During the recent California GIS Conference (CalGIS) in Monterey, three coordination meetings were held and many people expressed a strong desire to revitalize the GIS Council. During these discussions representatives from county, regional, state and federal level GIS organizations validated that it remains in California’s best interest to have the GIS Council to help move forward with the California spatial data infrastructure.  In particular, the California Geographic Information Council (CGIA) expressed its commitment to support GIS Council activities.

Based on this input, eight of those in the earlier coordination meetings (including Carol Ostergren, Bruce Joffe, Robert Yohi, Mark Greninger, Christina Boggs, and me), scheduled a lunch meeting with GIO Scott Gregory at CalGIS.  During that discussion Scott agreed that the GIS Council can play an important role in shaping California’s GIS data framework.  He emphasized the importance of the Working Groups within the Council, and supports its new start.  Scott also stressed the importance of deliverables related to Working Group activities. He would like to have each group develop, if they have not already, a business plan regarding mission, goals, objectives, and deliverables. Scottwill hold an advisory role on the Council, and will work closely with the Council and commit his or his staff’s time to participate in all GIS Council meetings and activities.

The GIS Council Meeting will be held on Thursday, May 22 in Sacramento from 9am – noon. The address is 1325 J Street, 16th Floor, and it will be held in the Zinfandel Conference Room.

There are several agenda items for this meeting, including:

  1. Provide a brief history of the GIS Council, and discuss how it relates to the California State Government GIS User Group, the California State Government GIS Leadership Group, California URISA Chapters, and the California Geographic Information Association.
  2. Hold elections.  The previous Board has timed out, and we are seeking new leadership from the GIS Community. Scott wants to stress the importance of local participation. This has traditionally been a “State” dominated council. He wants to see more local government participation.
  3. Review existing Working Group progress and seek leadership on additional GIS Council Working Groups.  Each Working Group focuses on one of California’s framework data sets. Active Working Groups will provide reports at this meeting, and others will report out at the next meeting.
  4. Discuss and develop recommendation of top priorities for the GIS Council in the upcoming year and draft action plan.
  5. Agree on frequency of GIS Council meetings, and set future meeting dates for at least one year.

More details will follow in subsequent email messages. The purpose of this message is for you to save-the-date on your calendar and consider stepping up to a leadership role on the Council. The Council has broad representation from multiple sectors, and there are many opportunities for participation!

If you would like further information or have any questions about the GIS Council and plans to move forward, please contact one of the following people:

In collaboration with the California Strategic Growth Council (SGC), I will be working with the GIS Council leadership to develop meeting agendas, communicate with the SGC and GIO about funding needs and opportunities, and facilitating the GIS Council meetings.

Please stay tuned for more messages about the GIS Council meeting on May 22nd.


Karen Beardsley

Karen Beardsley, PhD, GISP
Managing Director, Information Center for the Environment (ICE)
Department of Environmental Science and Policy
One Shields Avenue
University of California
Davis, CA  95616
Ph: (530) 752-5678
Fax: (530) 752-3350
Cell: (530) 848-3310

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