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October 21, 2020
URISA Announces Newest Members of the Vanguard Cabinet of Young Professionals

URISA is pleased to announce the newest members of its Vanguard Cabinet. The Vanguard Cabinet (VC) is a URISA initiative (which debuted in 2011) to engage young GIS practitioners, increase their numbers in the organization, and better understand the concerns facing these future leaders of the GIS community.  The VC is an advisory board who represent the young membership of the organization. The Cabinet’s mission is to collaborate with URISA’s Board of Directors and Committees in creating and promoting programs and policies of benefit to young professionals.

Comprised entirely of passionate young members selected from different geospatial disciplines, the Cabinet aims to position URISA as the center of opportunities for ambitious young professionals who are committed to improving URISA and the geospatial profession via innovation, collaboration, networking, and professional development. Each will serve a three-year term. 

2020-2023 URISA Vanguard Cabinet Members:

  Catherine Boush, Data Analyst, Roanoke Parks and Recreation, Roanoke, Virginia“I am looking forward to serving with other URISA Vanguard Cabinet members as we strive to increase young professional engagement and create lasting change within the organization and geospatial industry.”

  Siddharth (Sid) Pandey, CSM, Associate - Geospatial & Technology Services, Dewberry Engineers Inc., Fairfax, Virginia:  “I am so excited and honored to be accepted as a member of the 2020-2023 cohort of the Vanguard Cabinet! This is fantastic opportunity to learn from and work with other highly motivated and accomplished geospatial professionals and support the GIS community at large, and is an opportunity I am grateful for.  I’m looking forward to bringing my passion for all things GIS and my background working with other Emerging Professionals groups to support the great work the VC is already doing, and to find new and innovative ways to engage young professionals; providing them with more opportunities to develop their leadership and technical skills. I look forward to working with the other VC members to promote the geospatial industry and provide opportunities for emerging professionals to learn, grow and expand their networks!” 

  Kate Berg, MSc., Environmental GIS Consultant, Ramboll, Ann Arbor, Michigan: “As a new Vanguard member, I am most looking forward to making connections throughout the geospatial community and supporting my fellow mappy people as they navigate their GIS careers. I also can't wait to share my enthusiasm for all things maptastic, while encouraging more participation and engagement. “

  Hasmitha Rayasam, Research Assistant, Boston University: "I am very excited to be a part of this dynamic and passionate team, and fostering a sense of community among geospatial professionals. GIS is more accessible and visible today than it has ever been with everyone around the world looking at maps this year. I look forward to working with the geospatial community to promote and grow the profession and subsequently, our global impact."

  Michelle Field, GIS Analyst, Smith Seckman Reid, Inc., Memphis, Tennessee: ” I am extremely excited to be a part of URISA's 2020-2023 Vanguard Cabinet cohort. A lot of people do not know about the power of GIS and all of the good it can bring. I would really like to see schools and universities providing information about URISA and GIS. The goal for my three year term is to bring the knowledge of GIS to more students and young professionals to help empower them. GIS can be used in so many, if not all, career fields, and I would like to spread the word.”

Cabinet members are selected through an application process, with a review by the URISA Leadership Development Committee. The application process for the next class of Vanguard Cabinet members will open during the Summer of 2021. Learn more about VC activities here: https://www.urisa.org/vanguardcabinet  

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