Is there any interest in the USAF GeoBase from any other DOD sectors?
Yes. Ironically, visionary unit level leaders on two US Marine Corps installations in the Far East at MCAS Iwakuni and MCB Camp Butler were invaluable catalysts in helping to shape the current USAF GeoBase Initiative agenda beginning in the Summer of 1997. Naval Commander Randy Jackson, Iwakuni MCAS Facilities Engineer, and his Engineering Division Chief, Mr. Carl Nakamura, provided necessary funding for Lt. Col. Cullis and Mr. Ed Riegelmann (Geo InSight, International) to assist IMCAS in developing a station-wide approach to sharing geographic information. At that time, Lt. Col. Cullis was assigned to the USAF Academy's Department of Economics and Geography (DFEG) and Mr. Riegelmann was under contract to DFEG to develop a GIS-based USAF Bird Avoidance Model (BAM) for the USAF Flight Safety Center. However, Mr Riegelmann had previously served as Chief of GIS Programs at the Tri-Service CADD/GIS Technology Center where he was heavily involved in developing the Tri-Service Spatial Data Standards and designing more effective means for achieving successful GIS adoption on defense installations. The MCAS Iwakuni visit served as the genesis for the first Geospatial IT Management Strategic Plan which was delivered in Dec 97. During the same June 97 TDY, Lt. Col. Cullis and Mr. Riegelmann were also asked by USMC Col. Richard Holihan, Facilities Engineer for MCB Camp Butler, Okinawa, to share their GIS "lessons learned". Today, Col. Holihan serves as the HQ USMC Facilities Engineer and both Lt. Col. Cullis and Mr. Riegelmann have participated in USMC geospatial policy strategy sessions to share the accrued USAF experiences.
Senior CADD/GIS personnel from Headquarters, Naval Facilities and Engineering Command (NAVFAC) have also leveraged the USAF GeoBase effort. Based on their attendance at the USAF GeoBase Policy Workshop, HQ NAVFAC has organized a similar corporate geospatial IT policy forum to be held in late Oct 99. Lt. Col. Cullis has been asked to share the USAF GeoBase experiences at this policy forum.
Finally, even representatives from the joint and combined operations arenas have been intrigued by the potential benefit of GeoBase concepts for their respective operational domains. Faculty at the National Defense University's Information Resource Management College have actively participated in GeoBase conferences and served as valuable sounding boards for the proposed principles and operational concepts. During an Aug 99 GeoBase briefing to a small group of IRMC faculty, Colonel Michael Dziedzic (USAF), Senior Military Fellow to the Institute for National Strategic Studies, immediately recognized the inherent value of an integrated approach to geospatial information resource management for peace operations. Subsequently, Col. Dziedzic has contacted senior members of the United National Mission Interim Administration in Kosovo (UNMIK) and gained their approval for investigating how the USAF GeoBase Initiative could help in addressing the staggering geospatial information coordination challenges posed by refugee resettlement efforts following devastating civil wars.
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