(L - R) - Nathan Foster, WFO Louisville; Charles Gant, WFO Memphis; Gary Goggins, WFO Birmingham, Ala.; Eric Holweg, WFO Morristown, Tenn.; Michael Davis, WFO Nashville; Shawn O'Neill, WFO Morristown; Jack Settelmaier, Southern Region Headquarters; Nicholas Fillo, WFO Shreveport, La.; Tabitha Clarke, WFO Little Rock, Ark.; Tony Edwards, WFO Jackson, Ky.; Buddy Whorrall, WFO Jackson, Ky.; Robert "BJ" Simpson, WFO Little Rock; and, Sean Clarke, WFO Little Rock. (Photo: WFO Nashville)
(Oct. 26, 2010) - Geographic Information Systems (GIS) users from National Weather Service Southern and Central Region Weather Forecast Offices (WFO) gathered recently at the Nashville office for a GIS summit.
Organized by Nashville Information Technology Officer Michael Davis and Louisville Hydro Meteorological Technician Nathan Foster, the two-day summit was designed to allow for sharing of GIS-related activities and techniques underway at each of the participating offices.
Integrating hardware, software and datasets; GIS allows users to capture, manage and display various forms of geographically-based information. GIS provides information in easily understood formats that illustrate relationships, patterns and trends. Utilizing local or global maps, charts and reports; GIS specialists can show locations, quantities, concentrations and how various elements come together and interrelate.
The summit was also used as the launching point to create a Southern Region GIS Team. Little Rock forecast office Meteorologists Tabitha and Sean Clarke and Robert "BJ" Simpson have recently been tasked to organize a team.
"For years, I have witnessed Southern Region spearhead mission-applicable GIS work, including our own office with the COOP GIS effort developed by the Clarkes," said Renee Fair, meteorologist-in-charge of the Little Rock office. "With the recent addition of Simpson, we have reached a tipping point with GIS expertise. So I challenged my staff to organize a Southern Region GIS Team."
The Little Rock COOP GIS assists in the maintenance of the office's cooperative observer program by displaying attributes associated with efficient program management -- such as site visitation information.
The team will facilitate communication, projects and activities contributed by GIS users from all across Southern Region. It will be modeled on the successful structure and experience of a Central Region GIS Team created several years ago.