Waukesha County’s Land Information Officer and GIS Manager, Don Dittmar, is retiring on January 19th, 2018 after more than forty years in mapping, GIS and land records. Don’s career path took him from a manual drafting job in Illinois, to helping kick-start the GIS at SEWRPC and the City of Waukesha, to building the Waukesha County Land Information System essentially from the ground up. He has seen technology change from command line driven systems backed up on reel-to-reel magnetic tape, to GIS feature editing using a web browser and every painful but necessary upgrade it took to get there.
Over the years Don has been a very active member in the geospatial industry. In 2008, he was appointed to a position on the National Geospatial Advisory Committee. More recently he was elected the chairman of the Wisconsin Land Information Council and in 2001 served a term on the WLIA Board of Directors. In 2009, he received the Al Miller Sustained Service award and was instrumental in helping Waukesha County receive both the ESRI Special Achievement in GIS Award (2004) as well as the WLIA Local Government Achievement Award (2001).
While Don will be missed for his insight and passion for all things geospatial, he will perhaps be missed more for his willingness to help others. He has been a mentor for many of us at every level of government; Municipal, County, and State. His countless stories and rolling laughter will surely be missed at WLIA Regional Meetings and the Annual Conference.
WLIA thanks him for his dedication and wishes him well as he embarks on this new chapter of his life!