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 Serving Washington's GIS Community

Keynote Speaker


We are excited to welcome Bill Johnson, the "Carpe Geo" Evangelist with AppGeo, as the 2019 keynote speaker.

"What is carpe geo?

We have all heard the phrase carpe diem which translates to “seize the day.”

Carpe geo is seizing the opportunity to do great things with GIS.

A GIS project almost inevitably starts with a simple request, “Can you make me a map?”

The requester may not even know what they are asking for beyond that they want a map.  A vague request is an opportunity to learn, teach, and explore the full potential of GIS.  The trail from this simple request may lead to a very different destination than the one originally envisioned.

When you view this as a chance to experiment, mine ideas, and see where the exploration leads …"

Bill is a seasoned GIS professional with nearly 34 years of experience. Upon completion of his MA in Geography at Michigan State University in 1984, he started his career at the New York State Department of Transportation, which at that time was the home of the statewide mapping program.

His initial work involved converting the mapping program from photo-mechanical to state-of-the-art digital production, in preparation for color printing, publication, and sale of 1:24,000 scale quadrangles, county base maps, the NYS atlas, and other maps. In the late 1980’s and early 1990’s, he and his team also led one of the largest civilian GIS deployments of that era, serving more than 1,000 users in 11 regional DOT offices. Since then, he rose through the GIS ranks in New York State government, culminating in being named New York’s first Geographic Information Officer in 2014.

He retired from state service in 2016 and spent two years leading GIS program development in Washington, DC for the Universal Services Administrative Company (USAC), which is responsible for nationwide broadband support programs on behalf of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). In April of 2018, Bill joined Applied Geographics, Inc where he is applying his carpe geo philosophy of building trust through collaboration, of effecting fundamental change through thoughtful investment, and of consistent attention to excellence, as AppGeo’s carpe geo evangelist.

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