History of GIS Day Savannah

Held each year on the Wednesday of National Geographic Society’s Geography Awareness Week, GIS Day is a global event that celebrates GIS technology. GIS Day serves to make people aware of GIS technology and the important contributions it is making in the fields of science, technology, information, and the humanities. It is a grassroots event and a reflection of the enthusiasm and commitment of individual GIS users everywhere. GIS Day Savannah provides an opportunity for those curious about GIS to see its applications in action.

In 2007, a group of local professionals created a subcommittee of the SAGIS Technical Advisory Committee to organize the first annual GIS Day in our area. What started as a small idea grew into a large event in just a few months due to the enthusiasm of everyone involved. The first annual GIS Day Savannah highlighted the use of GIS in our community by government agencies, businesses, and educational institutions through technology demonstrations, a map gallery, and hands-on activities. Event participants and sponsors included Chatham County, City of Savannah, Coastal BETA, Coastal Georgia Regional Development Center, EMC Engineering, Georgia Power, Georgia Southern University, Georgia Tech Savannah, HGBD, NOAA Gray’s Reef National Marine Sanctuary, Pictometry, Saussy Engineering, Savannah Chatham County Public Schools, Chatham County – Savannah Metropolitan Planning Commission, Savannah Multi-List Corporation, Sligh Environmental Consultants, Spatial Engineering, The Creative Coast Initiative, and Thomas & Hutton Engineering. Over 200 8th grade students and 150 local professionals toured the booths and exhibits. The event would not have been possible without the assistance of HostSouth in the organization, set up, and break down of the exhibit space.

In addition to the annual event, the goal of GIS Day Savannah and its sponsors is to develop and nurture a GIS Program within our local schools. Proceeds from the annual event each year will be used to continue to support and expand the GIS Program within our local schools. The GIS Day committee is excited to see how the teachers and students use GIS in their classrooms to benefit the learning standards and curriculum.

GIS Day Savannah Committee

Sue Brown, Volunteer & Past President,  Savannah Multi-List Corporation

Ian DeNeeve GIS Specialist, Beaufort-Jasper Water & Sewer Authority

Megan Dulamal GIS Analyst, Thomas & Hutton

Preston Evans GIS Analyst, Thomas & Hutton

Steven Freenor, AP Geography Teacher, H. V. Jenkins High School, Savannah Chatham County Public Schools

Lara Hall, Director,  SAGIS, Chatham County – Savannah Metropolitan Planning Commission

Heidi HarrisMapping/Support Services Superviosr,  Chatham County Board of Assessors

Dr. Dionne Hoskins, Fishery Biologist, NOAA Fisheries Service Director,  NOAA Sponsored Programs, Savannah State University

Thomas Jeanquart, GIS Analyst,  Development Services Department, City of Savannah

Kevin MacLeod, GIS Programmer/Analyst,  SAGIS, Chatham County – Savannah Metropolitan Planning Commission

Chris MercerSocial Studies Program Manager, Savannah Chatham County Public Schools

Patrice Moore GIS Coordinator, Beaufort-Jasper Water & Sewer Authority

Dr. Amy Potter, Assistant Professor of Geography, Armstrong State University

Jeanine RoachOwner,  Where Matters LLC

Will Spence, Geographer,  US Army Corps of Engineers

Melinda SuttonSenior GIS Technician, Georgia Power Coastal Region

Mandy TerkhornGIS Analyst,  SAGIS, Chatham County – Savannah Metropolitan Planning Commission

Ashley MarshallGIS Specialist,  SAGIS, Chatham County – Savannah Metropolitan Planning Commission

SAGIS Board of Directors

ChairmanMatt Gignilliat, Regional External Affairs Manager
Georgia Power Coastal Region

G. Holmes Bell IV, CEO
Hussey, Gay, Bell and DeYoung

James J. Collins III, Branch Manager
Thomas & Hutton

Rob Hernandez,  City Manager
City of Savannah

Paul Hinchey, President/CEO
St. Joseph’s Candler Health System

Diane Lee, Director
Georgia Tech – Savannah

Lee Smith, County Manager
Chatham County