Matanuska-Susitna Borough

GIS stands out on a global scale

Mat-Su | Patty Sullivan | Sunday, September 21, 2008

GIS Division stands out globally. Learn what our award-winning GIS Office does and what cutting-edge company noticed them. PALMER –GIS Manager Tom Herschbach and his small Alaska crew earned an award of international distinction in 2008. The Borough GIS was one of only 170 chosen from among more than 100,000 worldwide for a Special Achievement in GIS, awarded by ESRI. The company is on the cutting edge of designing and developing geographic information systems technology.

This prestigious award was based on the Borough's rapid development and deployment of an enterprise-wide GIS solution to support the migration from the old mainframe onto the new multiple server environment. This new GIS solution will incorporate all of the Borough’s information into one tightly integrated system. This will aid in reducing duplicative tasks, while increasing overall productivity and efficiency.

“It's like taking 30-some years of system development and compressing it into a new system in one year,” said Tom Herschbach. “It's been a very busy and challenging year. Staff pulled together and accomplished the work. I'm very proud of them,” Herschbach said.

gisaward.jpg At the same time the GIS crew is adopting cutting-edge technology that would take typical agencies several years to implement.

A geographic information system integrates computer hardware, software, and data for capturing, managing, analyzing, and displaying all forms of geographical information. It allows users to view, understand, question, interpret, and visualize data in many ways that reveal relationships, patterns, and trends in the form of maps, globes, reports, and charts. This unique ability helps Borough employees to answer questions and solve problems by looking at data in a way that is quickly understood and easily shared.

Photo: Borough GIS Manager Tom Herschbach and GIS Technician Lindsey Finney accept the award from ESRI Founder Jack Dangermond.

To see what the company ESRI thinks about the Borough Office of GIS visit this page

Other GIS award winners are: Heather Kelley, Leah Jones, Will Sands, Gerry Romanczak, Erick Johnson, and Eric Goudey.

For more information, call Tom Herschbach at 745-9858.