About

About The GIS Consortium

The GIS Consortium is an organization of Chicago-area communities unified by a common goal: to share resources, information, staffing, and technology so that municipalities can optimize the value of geographic information systems (GIS).

GIS helps communities automate and improve local government business processes, from mapping incidents to supporting infrastructure systems and projects.  GIS is a visualization technology that integrates information, uncovers complex information relationships, and supports local government decision-making.  GIS results in better understanding, more effective communications, and greater operational efficiencies.

The GIS Consortium creates value for its members by identifying opportunities for minimizing cost and risk.  Members do not pay annual dues, but apply their entire GIS investment directly to solutions.  All intellectual property developed by the GIS Consortium belongs to its members.

The GIS Consortium is a proven solution for communities who are increasingly being challenged to do more with less.  Its collaborative approach reduces costs while improving public services.

MISSION

To reduce the cost and risk of GIS for small- and medium-sized communities.


VISION

To create value for our membership through collaboration, sharing, and smart solutions.


VALUES

  • Put Residents First
  • Specialize and Partner
  • Make It Happen
  • Constant Innovation
  • People Drive Success

HISTORY

In 1994, the City of Highland Park formed a GIS program based on an in-house staffing approach.  Although the system achieved its early objectives, staff attrition and stagnation put the program in jeopardy.

In 1998, Municipal GIS Partners, Inc. (MGP) founder Thomas Thomey introduced a staffing concept to David Limardi, City Manager of Highland Park.  This model was based on a shared-staffing approach that would provide multiple communities access to the necessary professional resources without the full-time cost.  By combining staffing, communities could target their investment on data, solutions, and staff development.

The City of Highland Park invited other communities to help develop the model, and in 1999 the GIS Consortium was formed with the following four communities:

• City of Highland Park      • Village of Glencoe      • Village of Lincolnshire      • City of Park Ridge

LEADERSHIP

The GIS Consortium Board elects officers every two-years to provide leadership and innovation. The current Board officers are:

President

Ashley Engelmann

PresidentLincolnwood, IL
Vice President

Brett Robinson

Vice PresidentBuffalo Grove, IL
President-Elect

Peggy Halik

President-ElectWoodridge, IL
Secretary-Treasurer

Michelle Rentzch

Secretary-TreasurerCrystal Lake, IL

TESTIMONIALS

The use of the GIS Specialist has freed up a lot of valuable staff time that is now taking care of duties that have been neglected for the last several years.

Don Wenzel
Don WenzelRolling Meadows

While the ESRI tools provide an excellent tool set to develop GIS solutions they do not offer an off the shelf GIS solution.  The GIS Consortium provides its members with an off the shelf GIS solution that is rich in content and support and is constantly evolving with new functionality.

Mark Binkerd
Mark Binkerd

The RC would truly struggle without GIS. We use it everyday (all day) for quick access to determine if a resident is within incorporated Glenview, if a streetlight is maintained by the Village, and if they have water and/or sewer with us. During this past snow storm, with a click of a button, we were able to determine if Glenview plows a specific street and what plow section it is. GIS recently added the sidewalk snow plowing routes which also allows us to determine if it is a public or private snow route.  It has greatly improved our communication with Public Works since we can provide them with accurate requests through work orders. I would STRONGLY recommend all municipalities to join because it will enhance your customer service and day-to-day operations. Also the GIS employees have always been fantastic to work with!

Jody Ruiz
Jody Ruiz

We have utilized GIS for many property tax analyses and no project has been too big or too small, they always understand the requested task, provide options and deliver on time!

Debi Lubbat
Debi Lubbat

FAQs

Who owns the data?

The community member owns its own data.

Who owns the software applications?

Software developed for the GIS Consortium, or its community members, is owned by all member communities.

How many people does the GIS Consortium have on staff?

None.

How often are the service providers evaluated?

All service providers are evaluated annually by the GIS Consortium Board to ensure they are offering the best value the market has to offer.

How large does the GIS Consortium plan to become?

The model was built to scale so that every additional member accrues value to the existing members.  We continue to see value by continually dividing up the pie.

GOVERNANCE

Each member community has one vote, regardless of their population, geographic size, or membership date.  Each community owns its data and has equal rights to intellectual property.  Data sharing among members is encouraged to facilitate greater efficiencies, better business processes, and mutual aid support.