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James W. Sewall


Rockland County GIS Portal receives Geospatial Leadership Award

Rockland County, New York, recently received GeoWorld’s Geospatial Leadership Award in the Public Enterprise category for its GIS Portal. The Portal, based upon Sewall GeoPower™, is an innovative enterprise solution for the delivery of GIS mapping, applications, and associated information over the web.

The Public Enterprise Award recognizes a “government entity or nonprofit organization that has pushed the boundaries of what’s possible to achieve broad system buy-in and use by a large number of constituents.” Rockland County was selected as one of five finalists from an international pool of candidates nominated by GIS professionals and subscribers to GeoTec Media publications and online media, including GeoWorld Magazine, GeoReport e-newsletter, and Final voting for the nominees—the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), for the HAZUS Program; the Government of Mongolia, for the Mongolia National Land Information System; the Milwaukee County Department of Transportation and Public Works, AE&ES Division, for the Milwaukee County Interactive Mapping Service; OpenGeo, a Division of the Open Planning Project, for the OpenGeo Suite; and Rockland County, for the GIS Portal—was conducted online through

The GIS Portal, developed by Sewall and implemented in October 2008, provides multiple users, including citizens, businesses, and local governments, with instant web access to a wide variety of geographic information and interactive map applications in a centralized geodatabase. With over 500,000 hits per month, an average of 3,000 unique visits, and over 4,000 megabytes of map downloads, the Portal has streamlined the County’s business processes and freed staff for the true mission of public service.

“Rockland County has made a commitment to provide an effective, user-friendly way for our constituencies to access valuable GIS-related resources,” says County Executive C. Scott Vanderhoef. “Our Portal meets that commitment by providing a gateway to these resources, while making County operations more efficient.”

County GIS Director Doug Schuetz agrees, “The Portal has truly changed the way we are able to make data available to the public and has moved us further toward the goal of becoming a more electronic government and digital county. We appreciate the support we have received from our Portal users and are grateful to those who voted for us to receive this award.”

Rockland County, the smallest county in New York State outside the boroughs of New York City, has a rich history, unparalleled parkland, growing economic opportunity and a diversity of population. The GIS Division of the Planning Department is the lead agency responsible for developing enterprise GIS to serve County agencies and the public at large.

Founded in 1880, Sewall is an integrated team of geospatial, engineering and natural resource consultants who partner with clients to create practical, sustainable solutions. The company's diverse portfolio is based on 100 years' experience in surveying, forestry consulting, and civil engineering; 60 years' in aerial mapping; and 20 years' in geospatial systems and software. In the last 10 years, Sewall's offerings have expanded to include services in environmental engineering, renewable energy, and web-based technologies.

To access the GIS Portal, please visit For more information on Sewall GeoPower, please contact: J. Randall Cercopely, Solutions Manager, at 843 224 6953;; or visit the Sewall web site at


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