Each year Keystone GIS (formerly PaMAGIC) recognizes one individual or organization that has contributed greatly to the promotion or advancement of GIS in Pennsylvania. The Excellence Award has been presented at the annual PA GIS Conference since 2009.
Go to awards by year:
This award is being presented to Rachel Ralls in recognition for her steadfast commitment and leadership of Central PA GIS Day. Since the events inception in 2009, Rachel played key roles in securing speakers and venues, building partnerships, facilitating, and coordinating committee meetings, and working with high school students and teachers in the geospatial professional community. The example that Rachel has set forth ensures that the Central GIS Day Event will continue to serve all sectors of the commonwealth for years to come.
Rachel is known for her relentless enthusiasm, and her dedication and leadership have contributed greatly to Pennsylvania’s GIS community.
2022 Service Recognition Award - Sam Neely
In her role as the Conference and Events Manager for the County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania, Sam Neely has served as the lead for planning the Pennsylvania GIS Conference for the past 10 years. The PAGIS Conference is a staple within Pennsylvania’s GIS Community that has provided an outlet for all branches of government, education, and the private sector to come together and network with one common goal, advancing and promoting understanding and acceptance of geospatial technologies in our state, a mission that mirrors that of Keystone GIS’.
Sam’s committed leadership and dedicated coordination of the event are a main reason for its success. We appreciate her contribution and thank her for all that she has done to advance the work of the geospatial community across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.
The 2020 PAMAGIC Excellence Award is being presented to Dr. Yasser Ayad. Dr. Ayad has served as Professor of GIS at Clarion University for nearly 20 years, inspiring countless students to explore careers and public service opportunities in GIS. Dr. Ayad founded and continues to organize the Northwest PA GIS Conference, now in its 15th year. This event serves as the ‘life blood’ of the GIS community in Western PA, bringing together a diverse group of geospatial professionals to network, learn, and share. His teachings not only demonstrate his passion for GIS, but convey the technology’s ability to better our communities and connect our cultures. PAMAGIC sincerely thanks Dr. Ayad for his contributions to the proliferation and education of GIS across the Commonwealth.
The 2019 PaMAGIC Excellence Award was awarded to Scott R. Zubek. Scott represents the best qualities of a GIS Professional in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. He has served as Tioga County GIS Director for many years and is responsible for creatng, maintaining, and distributing spatial information. Scott has served on the County GIS Pros and more recently the PA Geospatial Coordinating Board Governance task force, where he has been instrumental in the development of GIS standards and data sharing initiatives.
2018 Award Recipient - Dave Gilbert
The 2018 Excellence Award is being presented to Dave Gilbert. He has dedicated his time, energy, and ideas to the Pennsylvania GIS Community continuously for nearly twenty years. He works both on the front lines and behind the scenes to ensure return on investments in data and applications. Dave is known for speaking out in relentless pursuit of ideas and goals he believes are important.
Dave has led by example in the following ways: served three terms on the PaMAGIC Board and serves as our representative to the GeoBoard; guided formation of the PA Association of Floodplain Managers; actively supports updated hydrography data, represents private industry interests in GIS with pride and professionalism, and has an insatiable thirst for new technology.
State College, PA; May 15, 2018.
The 2017 Excellence Award is being presented to Nicole Ernst in recognition of her devotion to educating and influencing the Geospatial Community in Pennsylvania.
She led the development of a very successful and influential Geospatial Technology program at Harrisburg Area Community College. She has played a significant role in the creation of the Central PA GIS Day, which has grown to become a very important event in the region, and she has also made important contributions as a member of the PA GIS Conference Planning Committee.
Nicole’s energy and enthusiasm are infectious and her GIS achievements will have a lasting impact on future generations.
State College, PA, May 16, 2017.
The 2016 Excellence Award was presented to Eric Jespersen in recognition of his life-long devotion, dedication and commitment to volunteer and non-profit organizations like PaMAGIC. He has led by example, with steadfastness and limitless energy.
Eric has been pivotal in the creation and formation of Pennsylvania’s State Geospatial Coordinating Board and numerous initiatives of PaMAGIC that are aimed at providing the citizens of the Commonwealth with quality geospatial resources.
State College, PA May 17, 2016.
The 2015 Excellence Award was presented to Jim Knudson for all his efforts in advancing geospatial technologies in Pennsylvania.
The GIS community appreciates all your commitment and work. Thank you Jim!
State College, PA; June, 2015.
The 2014 Excellence Award was presented to Laura Simonetti for being an active leader in the PA GIS community, which is exhibited by her contributions to coordination and communication activities on a local, regional and statewide basis.
State College, PA May, 2014.
The Master of Ceremonies duties shared by Mike Bialousz and Mike Shillenn during recent GIS Conferences exhibit many of the characteristics and benefits of public and private collaboration.
The excellent example set forth by both Mikes and their perennial labors in planning the GIS Conference are valuable to us all.
State College, PA June, 2013.
The 2012 Excellence Award was presented to the Northwest Pennsylvania GIS Planning Committee. They have exhibited strong dedication to the organization and excellent execution of the annual Northwest PA GIS Conference.
The 2011 Excellence Award was presented to Brady Stroh. Brady has steadfastly and unselfishly worked to foster the growth and development of a coordinated GIS within the Commonwealth for over 15 years. His ideas and optimism have been demonstrated through words and actions, which have proven to be a steadying force in GIS and have been regularly useful in promoting a way forward. Brady’s commitment to excellence is evident in a desire to educate others while providing leadership in a public setting as well as behind the scenes. Examples of his commitment to the public good are numerous, but none more so than the many years he spent organizing and managing the Pennsylvania GIS Conference.
Whereas, Representative Russell Fairchild has exhibited leadership by introducing legislation that would give Pennsylvania's GIS practitioners a voice at the state level through the creation of a Geospatial Coordinating Council. Representative Fairchild''s long-standing support of this endeavor speaks to his dedication not only to the state's geospatial community but to every citizen of Pennsylvania. Now therefore, the PAMAGIC proudly recognizes the efforts of Representative Fairchild and his service to the Commonwealth.
Johnstown, PA May 11, 2010.
The first Excellence Award was presented in 2009 to Ms. Maurie Kelly, Director of PASDA. Ms. Kelly has been a long-standing advocate for Pennsylvania''s Spatial Data ClearingHouse and continues to promote data sharing throughout the Commonwealth.
The Pennsylvania Spatial Data Access otherwise known as PASDA has exhibited technical innovation consistent with responsive needs to its users, responsible use of limited resources and exhibited excellence in GIS for the benefit of all Pennsylvanians. PAMAGIC recognizes the long standing contributions to the director and staff of PASDA.