2021 Annual Conference

Thank you for making our 34th Annual Conference a success! The conference took place virtually during the week of February 15-19, 2021.

Plan to attend the 2022 Annual Conference, which will take place at The Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake, WI on February 23–25, 2022.

Highlighting our wonderful keynote speakers!

Este Geraghty

Dr. Este Geraghty, MD, MS, MPH, CPH, GISP is the Chief Medical Officer at Esri, developer of the world’s most powerful mapping and analytics platform. She heads Esri’s worldwide health and human services practice and is passionate about transforming health organizations through a geographic approach. Previously, she was the deputy director of the Center for Health Statistics and Informatics at the California Department of Public Health. There she engaged in statewide initiatives in meaningful use, health information exchange, open data and interoperability. While serving as an associate professor of clinical internal medicine at the University of California (UC) Davis she conducted research on geographic approaches to influencing health policy and advancing community development programs. Geraghty is the author of numerous health and GIS peer reviewed papers and book chapters. She has lectured extensively around the world on a broad range of topics that include social determinants of health, open data, climate change, homelessness, access to care, opioid addiction, privacy issues and public health preparedness. She received her medical degree, master’s degree in health informatics, and master’s degree in public health from UC Davis. She is board certified in public health (CPH) and is also a geographic information system professional (GISP).

Kevin Ehrman-Solberg

Kevin is one of the co-founders of the Mapping Prejudice Project at the University of Minnesota, which is identifying and mapping racially restrictive housing covenants in the 20th century. Combining GIS, optical character recognition, and crowd-sourcing, Mapping Prejudice weaves traditional research methodologies with cutting-edge digital tools to build comprehensive spatial databases of racial covenants for cities across the United States. An active proponent of the digital humanities, Kevin’s work focuses on the intersection of race, historical narrative, and contested space.

In addition to his geospatial research, Kevin is also the lead web developer for the Historyapolis Project. He holds a Masters in Geographic Information Science, and has developed multiple online mapping applications for the University of Minnesota, Prologue DC, and Visible City. You can find some of his cartographic work in the Star Tribune, Open Rivers, and the Middle West Review.

Robert Young Pelton

Robert’s career started in marketing and product design with clients that included Marvel, Disney, Mattel and was brought on by Steve Jobs to help launch both the Lisa and the Mac for Apple Computers. However, in his forties, Pelton retired from his marketing career to focus on going inside dirty wars, conflicts and dangerous remote regions of the world to gain a greater understanding for the human condition. The unique access he has gained in these regions and independent point of view, outside media coverage, gained him the interest of the world. He has been a popular guest on Oprah, Conan, Late Night, Dennis Miller, Geraldo, Real Time with Bill Maher, Fox, CNN, CBS, NBC, ABC, TED, al Jazeera and many, many other programs. Pelton has worked as a journalist for CBS 60 Minutes, ABC Investigative Division, CNN, National Geographic, Discovery, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Vice, Foreign Policy and many more.

Many of his experiences became the subject of the Discovery Channel series Robert Young Pelton’s – The World’s Most Dangerous Places that ran from 1996 until 2003. Robert has documented parts of his two and half decades of immersion into war; some include the siege of Grozny with Chechen rebels, interviewing American jihadi John Walker Lindh at the battle of Qala-i-Jangi in Afghanistan, being kidnapped by right wing death squads in Colombia, doing missions with Green Berets, running Route Irish with Blackwater every day for a month in Iraq, tracking down the Vice President of South Sudan after an assassination attempt and living with an elusive retired Special Forces colonel training Karin rebels deep inside the jungles of Burma.

It is not all just adventure, Robert has created innovative ground networks of local reporters during the height of conflicts in Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia and Libya to provide information on solving conflict, stability, kidnapping, piracy, human trafficking and local insight. He has served as an unpaid advisor to Four Star commanders in Afghanistan and heads of state and spent two years advising MOAS, the Migrant Offshore Aid Station in Malta. These days he finds himself in Libya and Sudan. Robert is also a Fellow of the Royal Geographic Society and has been a FRGS for twenty five years.