OGC was formed by a few exceptional people – David Schell, Ken Gardels, Kurt Buehler, Carl Reed and a few others – who had a vision of how much more value to society geospatial data could have if only the sources of data and the software services used to manipulate it could be made to work together simply and straightforwardly without the complexity, time-wasting and cost of working with multiple bespoke formats and interfaces. They not only had the foresight to see this opportunity but the insight, skills and determination to make vision become fact.
The OGC was formally founded in 1994 after a long series of meetings organized to discuss possibilities for opening up and growing the geospatial market. In the 20 years since those first meetings, membership has grown annually and the OGC has continuously evolved its process to better meet member needs in a rapidly evolving market. Agreements on process change have sometimes resulted in adjustments to the organization's goals and structure, and they have very often resulted in changes to the Technical Committee Policies and Procedures.