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URISA Leaders Recognized at GIS-Pro 2023

During the Awards Luncheon at GIS-Pro 2023 in Columbus, Ohio last month, URISA recognized the 2023 URISA GIS Hall of Fame inductee, Mike Kevany, along with the 2023 Exemplary Systems in Government (ESIG) Award winners (be sure to take some time to review the videos submitted by the winning systems).

A number of URISA leaders were also recognized for their volunteer service during the conference. We congratulate and thank all honorees for their amazing contributions to the community!

Horwood Distinguished Service Award: An occasional award given for long-term service to URISA and the profession. This award is URISA’s ultimate award for service and leadership to URISA and within the geospatial industry. Awardees will have demonstrated significant contributions to both URISA and the geospatial technologies industry. The Horwood Distinguished Service Award is named after founding member and first URISA President, Edgar Horwood. Horwood was an early pioneer in the field of information systems for local government and admired by all for his intellectual and organizational contributions to URISA. Horwood was the Chair of the constitutional drafting committee, giving URISA the "open membership" model that has led to our inter-disciplinary organization. 

2023 Recipients: Glenn O'Grady and Bruce Joffe

Bruce Joffe

Leadership Award: Presented to members who have demonstrated exemplary leadership to URISA, creativity, innovation, and dedicated support of URISA programs. The recipient should be a member of URISA for enough years to show a pattern of leadership. Typically, the recipient will have been responsible for new programs or activities, or significantly enhanced an existing activity or program, so that it takes URISA in a new direction and/or enhances our standing in the professional community.

2023 Recipients: Sid Pandey (Deloitte) and Wendy Peloquin (Avineon)

Service Award: Presented to members who have demonstrated faithful service to URISA and participation in its program over a period of several years. This award is for specific service to URISA. It should require a significant number of years of (not necessarily consecutive) service in a number of programs or committees, and a willingness to take on challenges without regard to the potential for recognition.

2023 Recipient: Alex Hepp (Cyclomedia)

Barbara Hirsch Special Service Award: Presented to members or staff who have made special contributions to URISA. This award was created (in 2004) to honor URISA’s former Chief Financial Officer, Barbara Hirsch. Barb made her mark at URISA by being an exceptional professional who would always step forward when a point needed to be made, but never stepped to the front for recognition. It is in the spirit of this dedication that the Board of Directors has created an award for special service to URISA. This award will be given to individuals or committees who have shown a similar consummate level of service to URISA through an ongoing commitment to our success as an organization.

2023 Recipients: 

  • Steve Steinberg (Los Angeles County)
  • Rachel Marquez (Los Angeles County)
  • Sara Taylor (Texas 811)

URISA President, Ashley Hitt, with Steve Steinberg, Conference Chair Alex Lopez-Rogina, and Rachel Marquez.

Award Recipient: Sara Taylor

Chapter of the Year:  Each year, URISA recognizes an outstanding Chapter that has sponsored particularly effective activities or has otherwise excelled in serving its membership. Outstanding Chapter Award criteria include:

  • Innovation
  • Outreach
  • Education
  • Community Impact

The URISA California Chapter was the recipient of this year’s Outstanding Chapter Award.

Young Professional of the Year: URISA was also pleased to recognize Sara Thompson (Arizona Department of Transportation) as URISA's 2023 Young Professional of the Year in recognition of outstanding contributions as part of URISA's Vanguard Cabinet. 

Dr. Marilyn O'Hara Ruiz Young Professional Scholarship Winners:  Jordan Landrum and Christina Sabochick (learn more here)

Review the distinguished history of URISA Award winners here: