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Feb 2022 Housing Hangout - Mapping Equitable Communities

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Presentations by guest speakers: Bonny P McClain- geospatial analyst, writer and member of National Press Club DC, Ashley Hitt GISP- Vice President of GeoAnalytics at Connected Nation, Greg Babinski- GIS management consultant and founder of GIS Management Consulting Services LLC, and Frank Romo- founder and CEO of RomoGIS

Mapping Equitable Communities / GIS for Social Good

An address is more than where a person lives and receives mail. Places dictate what kind of opportunities people will have, their access to healthy food, education, jobs, and even how long they will live. Mapping can be a powerful visual aid for people to understand their communities and relationships within it. Maps display where things are located (or not), patterns and trends, and can reveal policy implications. While maps have been tools for discrimination, segregation, and marginalizing voters, they are also used across many sectors for social good. Meredith DiMattina, GISP will be facilitating a panel of GIS professionals using mapping technology to reshape communities into accessible places where residents can thrive. Panelists will share their experiences and discuss unique perspectives on technology and equity from a national, local, and individual level.

Speaker Bios

  • Bonny P McClain is a speaker and geospatial analyst working with a wide variety of tools and resources focusing on open source data. As an author and collaborator Bonny’s most recent book is being published by O’Reilly Media this year, Python for Geospatial Data Analysis: Theory, Tools, and Practice for Location Intelligence. Bonny applies advanced data analytics, including data engineering and geo-enrichment, to poverty, race, and gender discussions. Her research targets judgments about social determinants, racial equity, and elements of intersectionality to illuminate the confluence of metrics contributing to poverty. Moving beyond ZIP codes to explore apportioned socioeconomic data based on underlying population data leads to discovering novel variables based on location to build more context to complex data questions. As a member of the National Press Club and 500 Women Scientists, Bonny is present at a wide variety of health policy and health economic discussions.
  • Ashley Hitt, GISP is the Vice President of GeoAnalytics at Connected Nation, a national leader in broadband expansion programs. She oversees operations, project execution, and strategic planning for the GeoAnalytics team and is responsible for developing strategies using Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to provide data visualization solutions that impact policy, economic development, and the digital divide. She is a certified Geographic Information Systems Professional (GISP) and holds a bachelor of science in geography and a master of science in geoscience from Western Kentucky University. She was selected as the Urban and Regional Information Systems Association’s (URISA) Young GIS Professional of the Year in 2011, received the 2017 URISA Leadership Award and the 2020 URISA Service Award, and was elected as URISA President-Elect for 2021-2022.
  • Greg Babinski is a GIS management consultant and founder of GIS Management Consulting Services LLC, located in the greater Seattle area. Between 1998 and the end of 2021 he served as GIS Manager, GIS Finance Manager and GIS Marketing & Business Development Manager for the King County GIS Center in Seattle. Previously he worked for nine years as GIS Mapping Supervisor for the East Bay Municipal Utility District in Oakland. He holds an MA in geography from Wayne State University. Greg is a GISP – Certified GIS Professional. Babinski is Past-President of URISA and founder and Past-Chair of URISA’s GIS Management Institute. In 2005 he founded The Summit – the Washington State GIS Newsletter. In 2019 Greg was awarded an EthicalGEO Fellowship by the American Geographical Society. In addition to GIS consulting, he is a GIS researcher, author, and instructor. He has spoken about GIS management across North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. Greg has taught GIS for Public Policy as an instructor with the University of Washington Evans Graduate School of Public Administration. In his spare time Greg likes ‘hiking steep, narrow and dangerous trails that lead high above the clouds to awesome views’.
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Organizer The UNCG Center for Housing and Community Studies

Organizer of Mapping Equitable Communities

The Center for Housing and Community Studies (CHCS) is a university-based research, evaluation, and technical assistance center housed within the Office of Research and Engagement. As part of its mission, the University of North Carolina at Greensboro’s Center for Housing and Community Studies is committed to investigating and understanding how the social, economic, environmental and spatial aspects of home and neighborhood affect people’s health, well-being, and life course. Visit https://chcs.uncg.edu


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