David Schell

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About Me

David Schell is Chairman Emeritus of the OGC Board and currently serves as Chief Strategist for the corporation, focusing on strategic initiatives and relationships designed to serve the evolving needs of the organization and its growing membership community and stakeholders.

Mr. Schell served as both Chairman and CEO of OGC from its founding in 1994 until 2008 when the board elected Mark Reichardt to assume the position of President and CEO. As Executive Chairman from 2008 to 2012, Mr. Schell was principally concerned with overseeing board operations and organizing the consortium's strategic planning process.

Prior to developing the "Open GIS" process, Mr. Schell worked in the computer industry as a system programmer, marketing support engineer and technical writing manager for IBM, Honeywell Information Systems, and Data General Corp., respectively. As a founder of Pixel and Cadmus Computer Systems in the early 90's, Mr. Schell participated in the development of the UNIX workstation market, negotiating extensive third-party software relationships and the integration of interoperable productivity tools for both office and laboratory process automation.

Mr. Schell's involvement with geospatial information technology standards began in 1985 with his work at Massachusetts Computer Corporation (Masscomp), and later with Okidata Microsystems, where he focused on development and marketing of real time measurement and control, document management, and spatial imaging systems. During this period, Mr. Schell worked closely with the US Army Corps of Engineers to support development and industrial application of the Corps' widely used open source GIS product "GRASS" -- the Geographical Resources and Analysis Support System. In 1991, he was elected to lead the non-profit corporation founded by the GRASS User Forum to formalize technology transfer of GRASS to the private sector, and to begin organizing industry support for the creation of an infrastructure to support the development of geospatial interoperability. Renamed the "Open GIS Foundation", the organization focused on the integration of diverse geospatial product capabilities in the UNIX and internet environment, and engaged in extensive industry outreach to develop community consensus and support for the definition of "Open GIS". With the support of seven founding members, Mr. Schell reincorporated the foundation in 1994 as the Open GIS Consortium, crystallizing broad government and industry support, and the beginning of OGC's active specification process.

In October of 2002, CIO Magazine presented Mr. Schell with the CIO Magazine "CIO 20/20 Vision Award" for innovation and leadership in the development of transformational technologies essential to today's business process. In 2007 he received the GeoTec Media 2007 Visionary Achievement Award for dedication to the technical advancement and widespread use of geospatial technology.

Mr. Schell earned B.A. and M.A. degrees from Brown University and the University of North Carolina respectively, and currently holds -the title "Honorary Professor of Geospatial Interoperability" in the School of Engineering at the University of Nottingham.

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