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by John on August 10, 2015

Attending conferences can be a great way to visit with peers, friends, acquaintances, contacts, clients, and vendors. You are interacting with people. As I wrote in my previous blog, it’s all about relationships. This is another venue to explore in an attempt to strengthen a relationship that will benefit both sides of the proverbial “fence”, whatever that fence may be.
Conferences are great because in a way it’s just a big melting pot of like-minded individuals, all attending for some similar purpose, trying to learn from the courses and break-out sessions, from the time in the exhibit hall where you may be exposed to new technology, or where vendors and their clients (or prospective clients) can share some face-time and address any questions or concerns.
Very recently I attended the GAAO (Georgia Association of Assessing Officials Summer Conference on Jekyll Island, GA. I must say I truly love this conference and have attended faithfully for over a decade.
Depending on who you are the GAAO Summer Conference may be a routine conference, an opportunity to visit with peers, clients, or vendors. Or you can make t most out of it with the daily activities, beginning with group breakfast, followed by educational sessions, lunch, more educational opportunities, sprinkled with exhibit hall hours, and then some pretty cool evening activity; an ice cream social, fireworks, Bingo, auction, etc. Pre or Post conference activities can also be a lot of fun and a great way to spend time with your friends and strengthen these relationships.
This time can give you the opportunity to really get to know a person – a fellow employee, a client, a vendor, or a peer. Great relationships can be forged by attending these gatherings, and reinforced by a continuity of progressive annual attendance. For 15 years I have attended the IAAO Annual Conference ( and the URISA GIS/CAMA conference ) as well as state conferences in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Kentucky, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Oklahoma, other state conferences and Pictometry’s Futureview ( What a great way to get all these people together at the same time in the same place!
For many years Schneider Geospatial has been hosting annual GIS Users’ Group Conferences and Meetings in Ames, Iowa and Indianapolis, Indiana. This year, for the first time, we are hosting a session in Savannah, Georgia, which will dove-tail into the annual WinGAP Conference ( If you can attend these sessions – please do!
Ames, Iowa – August 25-26, 2015
Indianapolis, Indiana – September 17, 2015
Savannah, GA September 22-23, 2015
More information can be found at
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