New President's Message

04 Jun 2014 1:50 PM | Anonymous member

New President's Message

Chris Akin

As the newly appointed president of the New England Chapter of the Urban & Regional Information Systems Association (NEURISA), I am honored and privileged to be part of such a great organization.  I invite you to join me in helping to further NEURISA as the professional association of GIS practitioners in New England.


Our outgoing president, Diana Maties, has decided to move back to Chicago to be closer to family and has had to step down as President.  Diana deserves an enormous thank you from all of us for leading the chapter the last few months.  She will be missed here in New England, but keep an eye on her - I see a future Chicagoland Chapter President in her future.  Thanks again, Diana!

To introduce myself, I am the Senior GIS Specialist at FM Global, a global commercial and industrial property insurance company.   FM Global’s GIS endeavors include international hazard data research and development, internal and external geospatial web tools, and developing a corporate Geospatial Enterprise platform.   I received a BA in Geography with a GIS emphasis degree from Texas A&M University and a Master’s in GIS for Business and Service Planning from the University of Leeds, England.

NEURISA continues to have an enthusiastic Board of Directors who are passionate about all things mapping and GIS.  The amount of time and energy they put forth is truly impressive.  It often goes unsaid, but thank you to each of the Board Members for your time, energy, and devotion to NEURISA!

We have an exciting time in front of us.  Together, we have the opportunity to build an even stronger organization by capitalizing on our past accomplishments and recognizing the opportunities that are before us.  We hosted the recent URISA GIS-Pro conference in Providence, RI, in September 2013, and completed a member feedback survey that same year.  I’m proud to say that our chapter also received the 2013 URISA Outstanding Chapter Award for sponsoring particularly effective activities and otherwise excelled in serving its membership.  This is a great honor for NEURISA, and we plan to keep pushing forward in 2014 and beyond.

In order to look forward, we have formed a Strategic Planning Committee to take a look good at our chapter – where are we, where do we want to be, and how do we get there.  In the last few months, we’ve revamped our organizational mission statement, goals, and strategies.  We’re currently prioritizing future activities, as well as reaching out to other regional GIS organizations in the hopes of increased collaboration.

And of course, we’re always working on more GIS activities for our New England members.  Check out below for the Save the Date for the 2014 NEURISA Day Conference to be held on November 3rdin Sturbridge, MA.  We’re excited to announce that we will be having a second concurrent track in order to offer you even more opportunities.  We’re also looking into more webinars and networking events throughout the year.  And don’t forget that the URISA 2014 GIS-Pro conference will be held in New Orleans on September 8th-11th, 2014.  You don’t want to miss out on this great conference for GIS Professionals!

Although much hard work has been as put into the organization, NEURISA still needs your help.  We are always looking for volunteers, future Board Members, At-Large members, event hosts, sponsors, or anything else you think you can offer.  We’re always open to new ideas for events and opportunities, as well as your feedback and input.  If you’re interested in getting more involved in NEURISA, please do not hesitate to contact me or anyone else on the Board directly.  With your help can we continue to accomplish our organizational mission, and goals to better serve GIS practitioners in New England. 

Thank you all for your interest and investment in this great organization, and please don’t hesitate to let me know what you think will make NEURISA even better.  I look forward to an exciting future for NEURISA and its members.


Chris Akin, GISP

NEURISA President



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The New England Chapter of the Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (NEURISA) is the professional association of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) practitioners in New England. NEURISA is a nonprofit 501(c)6 organization whose mission is to advance the effective and appropriate use of GIS and related information technologies to solve challenges throughout the region.
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