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MAPPS Announces Judges for Sixth Annual Geospatial Products and Services Awards Competition

Thursday, October 25, 2012   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Nick Palatiello
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A panel of five independent judges has been selected to evaluate projects submitted in the MAPPS 2012 Geospatial Products and Services Excellence Awards competition. The award recipients will be announced on Tuesday, October 30 at the MAPPS/ASPRS Joint Specialty Conference in Tampa, Florida.

New to the panel in 2012 is Robert "Bob" Banzhoff, editor for Professional Surveyor Magazine. Mr. Banzhoff is a past president of Maryland Society of Surveyors (MSS) and was named Surveyor of the Year 2009 by that organization. He served on the Board of Trustees of the Maryland Society of Surveyors Educational Trust (MSSET). As Member Organizations Administrator at the American Congress on Surveying and Mapping (ACSM), he was national coordinator for the Certified Survey Technician and Trig-Star programs. He has been an adjunct instructor at the Community College of Baltimore County at Catonsville, (CCBC) and recently became the survey program coordinator for its two (2) year survey degree and certificate programs.

For the third year, the panel of judges is chaired by Robert Burtch, professor in the Surveying Engineering Program at Ferris State University, Big Rapids, MI, where he teaches courses in surveying, geographic information systems, photogrammetry and geodesy. Burtch is a Professional Surveyor in Michigan and a Certified Photogrammetrist, ASPRS.

Judges returning to the panel include:

Christine Grahl, the editor of POB magazine as well as, a fully interconnected website from POB that features insightful interviews and contributions from thought leaders in the geospatial profession. P.O.B., published by BNP Media, is the oldest monthly national magazine serving the surveying and mapping profession, reaching more than 38,000 readers. Kristi is an APEX Award-winning writer and editor, has been P.O.B. editor since 2008, and has spent the past 16 years working closely with publications serving audiences including engineers and entrepreneurs.

Donn D. Dears, a retired General Electric Company executive now based in Chicago. A graduate of the United States Merchant Marine Academy and veteran of the U.S. Navy. Mr. Dears is president of TSAugust, a 501(C)(3), nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank conducting research on energy and economic issues, is the author of two books and writes the blog, Power America.

Leonard Gilroy, director of government reform at Reason Foundation, a Los Angeles nonprofit think tank advancing free markets. Gilroy, a certified urban planner (AICP), researches privatization, government reform, transportation, infrastructure, and urban policy issues. Gilroy has a diversified background in policy research and implementation, with particular emphases on public-private partnerships, competition, government efficiency, transparency, accountability, and government performance. Gilroy has worked closely with legislators and elected officials in Texas, Arizona, Louisiana, Utah, Virginia, California, and several other states in efforts to design and implement market-based policy approaches, improve government performance, enhance accountability in government programs, and reduce government spending. He is the editor of the world's most respected newsletter on privatization, Privatization Watch, and is the editor of the widely-read Annual Privatization Report, which examines trends and chronicles the experiences of local, state, and federal governments in bringing competition to public services.

The MAPPS awards competition recognizes the professionalism, value, integrity and achievement that member firms have demonstrated in their projects and technology developments over the previous year. "We are honored to have these independent, knowledgeable individuals participate in our competition. The projects submitted exemplify the contributions private geospatial firms make to society every day to enhance our quality of life. The judges' backgrounds bring insight into the technical and societal merits of the projects," said MAPPS Executive Director John Palatiello.

The Geospatial Products and Services Excellence Awards program has eight categories for projects and technologies delivered in calendar year 2011: airborne and satellite data acquisition; photogrammetry/elevation data generation; remote sensing; GIS/IT; small projects; surveying/field data collection; technology innovation and licensed data products. A Grand Award winner will be selected from the eight category winners to represent the MAPPS Project of the Year. This is the sixth annual awards competition.


Formed in 1982, MAPPS is the only national association exclusively comprised of private firms in the remote sensing, spatial data and geographic information systems field in the United States. The MAPPS membership spans the entire spectrum of the geospatial community, including Member Firms engaged in satellite and airborne remote sensing, surveying, photogrammetry, aerial photography, LIDAR, hydrography, bathymetry, charting, aerial and satellite image processing, GPS, and GIS data collection and conversion services. MAPPS also includes Associate Member Firms, which are companies that provide hardware, software, products and services to the geospatial profession in the United States and other firms from around the world. Independent Consultant Members are sole proprietors engaged in consulting in or to the geospatial profession, or provides a consulting service of interest to the geospatial profession.

MAPPS provides its 160+ member firms opportunities for networking and developing business-to-business relationships, information sharing, education, public policy advocacy, market growth, and professional development and image enhancement.

For more information on MAPPS, please visit