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Eastern Shore Regional GIS Cooperative Newsletter

Spring 2022


Director’s Message


I recently began a new adventure as a member of Leadership Maryland’s Class of 2022. We have only completed our two-day orientation, but I am truly awestruck by the talent, diversity and commitment to Maryland of the 51 leaders that are participating this year. So, this has me thinking about the concept of leadership, particularly related to the work of the Eastern Shore Regional GIS Cooperative.


Leadership is a very amorphous thing; it’s tough to define precisely, but most people feel they know it when they see it. Are leaders born with an innate ability to inspire and motivate or are leaders made, formed from their training, their experiences and the mentorship they receive? Leadership takes many forms and can be found in almost every context – in the kindergarten classroom, on the factory floor, in our civic organizations, in our communities and in our nation. Leaders can be inspirational, passionate, underwhelming but capable, even intimidating. But the leadership style that I most identify with, and that we have tried to embody at the ESRGC, is the concept of servant-leadership.


In the realm of regional geographic information systems, the ESRGC seeks to serve the governments, organizations and businesses of the Delmarva Peninsula – and by extension, the citizens, members and customers of our partners. We are always searching for new ways to serve, demonstrated by our expansion of our offerings in data modeling, analysis and visualization. We seek to be leaders in this space, for the benefit of the communities we serve. This has long included advocating for the development of better funding mechanisms, leveraging federal, state and local partnerships for improved data gathering, supporting statewide professional organizations like the Maryland State Geographic Information Committee (MSGIC) and establishing a strong presence at regional conferences like TUGIS and the Delmarva GIS Conference. Our ESRGC team members are similarly encouraged to take on leadership roles inside and outside Salisbury University, as we know that acting as a servant-leader yields personal and professional benefits as well.


As we progress through our 18th year at the ESRGC, we would love your feedback on how we can further our leadership in the GIS and data science industries in Maryland, Delaware and Virginia. For to be an effective servant-leader, active listening to those you serve is absolutely critical. Thank you for being a partner on this journey with us – and for your own leadership in your organization. Together, we will continue to serve this very special place the best way we know how.


Michael Scott, Ph.D., GISP

Director, Eastern Shore Regional GIS Cooperative
Dean, Henson School of Science and Technology



Eastern Shore Business Sentiment Survey Collaboration with BEACON


ESRGC and SU’s Business Economic and Community Outreach Network (BEACON) partnered with local economic and workforce professionals to create a survey to gauge a regional economic outlook. This sentiment survey was first released in June 2021, again in December 2021, with a plan to release in May 2022 as well. The survey includes 50 questions, asking local business leaders to weigh in on a range of topics, from general concerns to conditions in their specific industries. The ESRGC summarized the survey findings in a visual dashboard that can be found on the Eastern Shore Economic Recovery Project page on the Delmarva Index website. To access the data and view the dashboards visit:


GIS Outreach


Periodically the ESRGC will host or visit local elementary, middle and high school students to introduce them to GIS and real-world mapping situations along with showcasing the projects we all work on in our day to day. Recently students from The Salisbury School, St. Francis de Sales Catholic School, Salisbury Middle School and Worcester Technical High School were among the schools we met with. ESRGC staff tailor these presentations to the students based on their grade level or relevant studies in their normal classrooms. With these students, we discuss topics ranging from making a map of their neighborhoods from memory to hands-on mapping of chicken house placement based on watershed analysis. In addition, students of all ages love being able to see a drone in action and learning how we use these tools for our projects. Some students that visited our office in the Downtown Gallery Building also were able to setup an interesting tour with our neighbors, the SU Rommel Center for Entrepreneurship.


SU on the Air


ESRGC Project Manager Erin Silva was interviewed for SU on the Air with PAC 14 to introduce viewers to what we do here at the ESRGC while highlighting our internship program and current projects. In addition, Silva discussed the Eastern Shore Business Sentiment Survey partnership with BEACON and emphasized the importance of being able to visualize economic data over time which can lead to a more complete understanding of local business outlooks.

View the Episode

MEDA Honors ESRGC with Economic Development Program Award


The Eastern Shore Economic Recovery Program, nominated by Caroline County Economic Development, Dorchester County Economic Development and Talbot County Office of Economic Development and Tourism, is the small community award winner in the Economic Development Program Category. In the wake of COVID-19, their scope of impact resulted in the development of multiple data visualization tools that can be used by economic developers when facing an economic crisis.

Learn More

The Eastern Shore Economic Recovery Program includes interactive dashboards highlighting the impact of the pandemic on local businesses and regional communities. You can explore the Eastern Shore Economic Recovery Project and its data by visiting:

Learn More

Intern Spotlight: Andrea Russel!

We’re excited to announce our spring 2022 Intern Spotlight, Andrea Russel!


The ESRGC works directly with Salisbury University to help provide valuable internship opportunities for students in the GIS field. Internships range from field data collection to database analyses for local government agencies, and everything in between! On a quarterly basis, the ESRGC highlights a current or former intern to call attention to their experience and see how it has helped them learn real-world skills that prepare them for a direct transition to the workforce.

Meet Andrea

Adjunct Faculty Offerings

This semester, Logan Hall continues teaching GEOG 419: Advanced GIS. The goal of this course is to introduce students to advanced concepts in geographic information science with hands-on learning in the ESRI software environment. Exposure to real-world examples allows students to engage in professional discussions related to in-process projects at the ESRGC. The course completes with students planning and conducting an original GIS research project from beginning to end and presenting their results in a conference-style format.

ESRGC Notable Achievements

Erin Silva recently was honored for 15 years of service at Salisbury University and we congratulate her on this milestone!


Where to find ESRGC

url    url    url    youtube


Give to ESRGC

Salisbury University Logo

A copy of the current financial statement of the Salisbury University Foundation, Inc. is available by writing 1308 Camden Avenue, Salisbury MD 21801 or on its website, Documents and information submitted under the Maryland Solicitations Act are also available, for the cost of postage and copies, from the Maryland Secretary of State, State House, Annapolis MD 21401, 410-974-5534.


SU is an Equal Opportunity/AA/Title IX university and provides reasonable accommodation given sufficient notice to the University office or staff sponsoring the event or program. For more information regarding SU’s policies and procedures, please visit


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