USGIF in St. Louis

Foundation hosts Innovation Day, Tech Showcase West, “Mappy Hour,” and more

By Kristin Quinn

October 26, 2016

The spirit of citywide innovation, plans for the new National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) Campus West, and ushering the tradecraft into the future were common themes last week during a series of events the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation (USGIF) hosted in St. Louis, Mo.

Events kicked off Tuesday, October 18, at the @4240 building in the Cortex Innovation Community—a burgeoning innovation hub and technology district—with USGIF’s third and final 2017 State of GEOINT Content Exchange. The Content Exchanges inform the Foundation’s annual State of GEOINT Report. NGA Director Robert Cardillo and several agency leaders joined the Content Exchange, during which Cardillo informally addressed the more than 40 participants.

Tuesday afternoon, USGIF hosted at Cortex its first unclassified Innovation Day, part of Tech Showcase West in St. Louis, featuring a keynote by Cardillo, a panel on public-private collaboration, and industry flash talks.

“The fact of Cortex as we approached the decision on our new campus was important,” Cardillo said to the crowd of around 200 people. “We were looking at where we could be most competitive and attractive to that workforce.”

Cardillo added the agency currently has three full-time employees assigned to Cortex, but plans to up that number to 15 by the end of 2016.

Innovation Day concluded with a networking event featuring refreshments, a live band, and tours of the @4240 building.

Wednesday, October 19, USGIF hosted nearly 175 people for its NGA Tech Showcase West at the agency’s Second Street location. The classified event featured an address by NGA Chief of Staff Ed Mornston, more than 20 technology demos throughout the facility, and tours of the NGA Operations Center.

On Wednesday evening, USGIF’s Young Professionals Group (YPG) hosted a “Mappy Hour” networking event at the @4240 building, showcasing National Geographic’s Giant Traveling Map of the Solar System. YPG kept the giant map at @4240 through Thursday, for a GEOx geospatial technology showcase hosted by Cortex. During GEOx, USGIF hosted 15 fifth through eighth grade students from La Salle Middle School in St. Louis for activities using the Giant Traveling Map of the Solar System as well as the Giant State Map of Missouri. USGIF then donated the giant map of the Solar System to the St. Louis Science Center for the remainder of its rental period.

In November, USGIF will host its 2016 GEOINT Community Week, which includes NGA Tech Showcase East, two days of unclassified and classified small satellite workshops, a special edition of GEOINTeraction Tuesday, and more. Click here to learn more or to register.

 

Photo courtesy of Dave Richards, NGA