GIS Response Corps Archived Minutes

February 21, 2013

The committee has generated its strategic plan for 2013 (

August 16, 2012

The Committee met August 14, 2012. Becky McKinley gave an update for District 1 activities including their 2nd meeting. She said they had a great response with more police and EMT than GIS professionals. They are drafting a proposal to purchase equipment to equip the response van. They are looking at receiving funding from a grant between 18K-25K. Becky is looking into remote licenses for ESRI or installing a stand-a-lone license for each laptop. District 1 volunteers are currently working on their 4 classes for training EMI.

Leane Kmetz gave an update about the work that she is doing for the Westfield Police Department. The Westfield Police department continually does training exercises inside of the various schools during the summer. Leane is geo-referencing the building plans of the schools and tracing the interior walls, classroom numbers and door numbers in order to generate an application that the police department can use to strategize where to enter and maneuver inside a school based on the call.

John Millburn gave an update of the meeting that was held at the Hancock County for emergency responders.

Chris Severs gave an update of the District 5 volunteers. Currently there are approximately 30 GIS volunteers. Chris met with the fire chief from Fishers – Steve A. to get his feelings for the type of GIS help that we could provide. He thought that we should have 2-3 GIS people on site for mapping support. The requirements are the NIMS training classes.

June 21, 2012

Christina McCullough has departed as the IGIC GIS Response Corps chair. The Committee wishes to thank Christina for her vision, service, enthusiasm, and all her hard work to bring us this far.

The Committee met June 12, 2011. The Committee talked about discussions held at the recent Northwest Indiana GIS Forum meeting to provide GIS expertise to support emergency response efforts in IDHS District 1 in NW Indiana. Some background: District 1 staff recently provided on-the-ground support to the Henryville Tornado recovery efforts and identified the need to include GIS support as an integrated component of their teams’ response efforts. After the event Eric Kurtz from District 1 contacted the NWI GIS Forum to seek GIS technical support to help them develop a model to support geospatial response, training and capabilities within their response team.

Phil Worrall offered all existing resources developed by our Committee’s efforts to date, and also extended an invitation to this group to coordinate with our IGIC GIS Response Corps Committee, so we can help with any other resources they might need. From an IGIC perspective we would like to use this NWI effort as a pilot program that we can document and then offer as a template to the 9 other districts to build-out their GIS response capacity as a grass-roots effort.


April 19, 2012

The Committee met April 10, 2011. DHS S&T Technical support team demonstrated Virtual USA. Virtual USA enables emergency response agencies to more quickly find, share, and analyze data — allowing them to make better decisions based on more complete information. DHS demonstrated the ability to share information on the Virtual USA Website and see how user defined libraries can be shared within a Flex viewer environment. Additional information about Virtual USA can be found at the following URL, During the IGIC Conference Christina McCullough will be demonstrating how to build a Flex viewer and install the Virtual USA Widget within the viewer.

Christina McCullough will be departing as the IGIC GIS Response Corps chair. Her job is requiring relocation to the Washington, DC area. Chris Severns and Leane Kmetz will be the new co-chairs of the Committee.


February 16, 2012

The Committee has developed a set of goals for the upcoming year:

  • Expand geospatial data Information sharing. The committee will continue to support the ongoing information sharing efforts between the City of Westfield and Hancock County. The project’s goal for completion will ensure secure information sharing between communities.
  • The committee will continue the evaluation and completion of the SOP documentation the committee has completed already.
  • The committee will assist additional counties with similar data sharing capabilities.


December 8, 2011

The committee did not meet during this period.

October 20, 2011

The Committee met twice during this last period. Christina Mccullough reported that the IGIC GIS Response Corps Viewer was upgraded to 2.4. New widgets will be created to include the essential facilities data layers and the new IndianaMap rest services and layers.

The Committee is in talks with a local agency to see how we can learn/support exercises and/or emergency events to promote seamless information sharing. Two questions were discussed during the last conference call; Who are our customers and What questions are the customers (decision makers) asking to meet their needs?

April 28, 2011

Christina McCullough, Chair, has released an updated IGIC GIS Response Corps Site at Check it out!! – Dates have been changed again. Submission period ends Feb 18th. Winners are to be announced May 10, 2011 12:00 AM EDT.

ArcNews Solicitation – On March 10, 2011, Phil Worrall and Christina talked with the Esri ArcNews Public Safety team about the IGIC GIS Response Corps. They are interested in writing a story about the committee. There has not been a final decision for this. We will keep the Committee posted with any updates.

EOC Binders – Christina is working on the final edits of the EOC Binders. Chapters will be sent out to committee members for final edits.

NLE 2011 (May 16 – 20) – At this week’s CUSEC NLE 2011 conference call Jeff Sopel (Virtual USA) indicated that he wants to take advantage of IGIC‟s GIS Response Corps and Esri’s offer of support the exercise. The Committee hopes to help test the effectiveness of VGI using social media tools. Basically, what social media sites have the most bang for the buck?

Feburary 28, 2011

The GIS Response Corps is still working on the Emergency Response binder. The Committee currently has 42 members.

In late 2010 the Corps provided a submission for FEMA’s Challenge Preparing our Communities Before a Disaster Strikes. The notification data has been moved back due to the number of submissions. More information about the Challenge is available at

At the last Committee meeting, David Nail, the USGS liaison for Indiana, gave a presentation on the USGS National Hydrography Dataset (NHD), and the Geographic Names Information System (GNIS).

December 3, 2010

The GIS Response Corps has been diligently writing a Standard Operating Procedure framework document for Emergency Operation Agencies. The document looks great, but still in motion.

Our conference call format will change to include training during the last 30-45 minutes of the meeting. As it is important to have the required data to support an emergency event, it is also important to understand the why and how the data is beneficial for the event. Eighteen topics were discussed during a brainstorming session in the Nov 16, 2010 meeting. Each topic will engage three areas; science behind the data, GIS data and data sharing. The wish list topics include but are not limited to Earthquakes, Floods, Dams, Water, Quality/chemical spills, Weather related issues, Airborne Chemicals, Water Sediment – Runoff, Agricultural/urban Impact, DHS GeoCONOPS, Imagery, Railroad Chemical Spill/radius for evacuation (ERG), Flex Sites from Emergency Management Practitioners (NationalMap, VirtualUSA), GIS Analysis concepts for Forest Harvest Plot, Silver Jackets – Flood Model (link), Coal Mining Dumps – carbon dioxide issues, Stream erosion, Stream Hydrologics, Symbology and Projections.

October 21, 2010

The GIS Response Corps has been diligently writing a Standard Operating Procedure framework document for Emergency Operation Agencies. The local host agency will have the final say for what they feel resides within their “best practices.” The binders will include a DVD with all of the necessary documents and software on it. The draft binder categories include Administration, POC lists, Checklists, Data Sources, Map Books and Misc.

August 19, 2010

The Committee is working on building binders for supporting GIS staff in an EOC. The concept is to create a basic guide that can be altered by the host agency. The binders will be considered “draft” working tools. The local host agency will have the final say for what they feel resides within their “best practices.” The binders will include a DVD with all of the necessary documents and software on it. The draft binder categories include Administration, POC lists, Checklists, Data Sources, Map Books and Misc.

The Committee now has 38 numbers. The sub-committee’s have 15 members. The sub-committees have not started meeting at this time.

June 17, 2010

The GIS Response Corps is working on building “Best practices with a proactive approach” when supporting GIS personnel during emergencies. The suggested practices will include hardware, software, project files and types, etc. The list includes and is not limited to GIS Binders and Map Books, GeoPDF’s, staff resources, data resources, geolocators, back up DVD’s, equipment and resources, and supporting the Ramona Inventory POC list.

David Surina, Kristen Lion and John Milburn participated in a Marion County EOC Workshop Training on June 11, 2010. The exercise will cover the EOC Binders, EOC Overview, issuance of EOC Credentialing/ID Badges/EOC Keys for responding personnel, NIMS Overview, and an EOC Activation.

The committee now has 38 members. The committee’s sub-committees have 15 members. The sub-committees have not started meeting at this time. The IGIC GIS Response Corps Flex Site traffic numbers for the following months are April – 7579 and May – 7787.

April 15, 2010

The Committee supported an IGIC Conference Technical Workshop: Preparing GIS Analysts to Support Emergency Events. It included how the Committee has been able to support first responders from a Local, County, State, and Federal government level perspective. Approximately 30 people attended the workshop, with roughly 20 local, 4 state, 2 education and 1 Federal representatives. Several key items of interest were derived from the Round Table discussion: Membership, Incident Command Structure, Imagery, Modeling/Analysis, Data Access, GIS Website, Event Communication, Outreach and Training. The Committee will be discussing best practices to accomplish these topics. The Committee now has 37 members. The IGIC GIS Response Corps Flex Site has seen some action with traffic numbers for the following months, January – 16,496, February – 17,455 and March 5,516.

February 22, 2010

The Committee’s Standard Operating Procedures documents are currently being prepared and will be reviewed during the next conference call meeting. Thanks to John Milburn who has worked hard at the development of these documents. All members are recommended to take online training classes offered by the National Incident Management System (NIMS) and the Incident Command Structure (ICS).

Phil Worrall and Christina McCullough attended the NSGIC Geospatial Preparedness committee meetings October 4-5, 2009. The NSGIC Mid-Year Conference, March 7-9, 2010, will hold an all day Homeland Security workshop. Topics are expected to include symbology, priority datasets, DHS expectations, ESF’s, GeoCONOPS, NGB WIDS Brite and Palenterra.

In December, the Committee published GIS Flex Viewer at Included in the viewer is weather data from NWS, NOAA, USGS and ESRI, and functionality such as drive time analysis, US National Grid, Report by Exception, and an enhanced draw tool. The viewer can be accessed by all.

Committee members have had the opportunity to discuss their GIS Emergency Support successes and challenges. Examples from Marion County, Hancock County and Hammond Sanitary District have been shared. Some of these examples can be found on the IGIC website.

Committee members will be presenting at the Indiana GIS Conference, “Preparing GIS Analysts to Support Emergency Events.” The workshop will include the processes and procedures required by the Incident Command System (ICS), National Incident Management System (NIMS) and National Response Plan (NRP). The workshop will also provide resources for consuming emergency-related data sets, event modeling and common operating picture examples.

Our goals for the next year is to look for grant opportunities, support training exercises, and sharing disaster related modeling applications.

December 3, 2009

During the last Committee conference call, the Indianapolis/Marion County Emergency Management delivered a webinar presentation through Defense Connect Online.

Dave Surina and Kristin Lion discussed their GIS successes and challenges during emergency related events. Examples of map products are posted on the IGIC GIS Corps Webpage. These examples include storm, wind and tornado damage assessments for three separate storms.

In addition, the November minutes provides examples that have been created to aid in the planning process prior to an event. These include Evacuation and Routing Analysis, Dynamic Emergency Response Vehicle Routing, Flood Mitigation, Identify Critical Information, Strategic National Stockpile. Potential future projects were also mentioned.

The Committee looks forward to viewing more projects that will include local, state, and federal emergency support missions.

GIS Support who require access for a WebEOC Account can contact their County EMA Director,

Virginia Interoperability Picture for Emergency Response (VIPER) – Adobe Flex Viewer

October 15, 2009

The Indiana GIS Volunteer Corps has decided to rename itself the GIS Response Corps Committee in an effort to avoid ambiguities.

Several committee members attended the Local Coordinator’s meeting. The success of this meeting and the State GIS Day has increased our membership by 6 new members. We now have 33 members.

Phil Worrall and Christina McCullough attended the NSGIC Geospatial Preparedness committee meetings Oct 4-5, 2009. Several key points addressed were:

  • NSGIC has hired two personnel to support DHS focused missions
  • Mid-year conference, March 7-9, 2010, will hold an all day Homeland Security workshop. Topics may include symbology, priority data sets, DHS expectations, ESF’s, GeoCONOPS, NGB WIDS Brite and Palenterra.

Two subcommittees have been created: Standard Operating Procedure Subcommittee and the Information Pamphlet Subcommittee. Both subcommittees are still in the development stages of writing the required documentation.

September 10, 2009

The group has decided to rename itself the GIS Response Corps Committee in an effort to avoid ambiguities.

August 20, 2009

The Indiana GIS Volunteer Corp Committee continues building a framework for the group. Currently, there are 25 members and volunteers. We are looking forward to presenting at the Local Coordinator’s Meeting. All members are recommended to take FEMA NIMS training classes. These classes provide an overview of the Incident Command System (ICS) and Introduction to the National Incident Management System (NIMS). And, we are starting the writing process for a brochure and information pamphlet. The documents will describe our roles and responsibilities, training requirements, and available data sources.

June 18, 2009

The Indiana GIS Volunteer Corps had a successful first meeting. Each member was able to discuss their ideas, concerns and expectations for the committee.

Overall the group focused on how to proactively provide support during emergency events. Sharing data, knowledge, resources and technologies were mentioned often. However, a large portion of the meeting focused on the reality of how communication during emergency events occurrs and how GIS can provide assistance to the decision makers.

Roger Koelpin and Pam Soule expressed their concerns about understanding what the end-customer, local communities, will require during an emergency. Topics included the Incident Command Structure; how information flows from the locals to state to federal agencies communicate. Pam suggested that Workgroup members attend county planning council meetings. At these meetings, provide map examples depicting events as a proof of concept. Phil Worrall and Christina McCullough agreed to attend these meetings.

Shoreh from URISA’s GIS Corp, an international GIS volunteer group, expressed her interest and support for the committee. As URISA volunteers are from around the world, they can provide volunteers if we would need them. The DRS (Disaster Response Subcommittee) of GIS Corps intends to run a pilot project on several states. Oregon is currently participating, and Missouri and Mississippi are candidates. The DRS subcommittee would like for Indiana to be part of their pilot project. Providing educational training with the focus on emergency support was discussed at length, but no solid solutions have been decided. Potential processes would be to present at the IGIC conference, provide links to training on the IGIC GIS Volunteer Corps website and hold a seminar.

April 16, 2009

The Committee leads have been working to determine the initial scope and structure of the group. A draft charter, implementation plan, and funding plan are currently being prepared. These documents will be reviewed by the full Committee, agencies at the State, and a sampling of local governments. After any feedback, the documents will be placed before the IGIC Executive Committee and Board for approval.

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