On July 10, 2013 in San Diego, California, Montgomery Botanical Center (MBC) received a Special Achievement in GIS (SAG) Award at the Esri International User Conference (Esri UC). This international award acknowledges vision, leadership, hard work, and innovative use of Esri’s geographic information system (GIS) technology.

Montgomery Botanical Center uses Esri ArcGIS technology for imagery and spatial analysis to build maps to visualize the specimens and topography of the property, in order to better perform research tasks and care for the 13,000+ plants that comprise our collections. A detailed contour map of the MBC property was created for staff use, road and lake edges were re-aligned, and canopy health improvement was evaluated. By visualizing the tree canopy, to date 32 new state champion and 3 national champion trees have been identified. Following this discovery, an application on champion trees was created with Esri software and is being used as a tutorial on Esri’s website.

Ericka Witcher, MBC Collections Supervisor and GIS Specialist, accepted the award on behalf of Montgomery. Ericka and the rest of the Montgomery Team are leading the world in innovative uses for Esri software. Esri president Jack Dangermond (pictured below with Ericka) stated:

“The SAG Awards identify the organizations and people that are using the power of geography to improve our world and drive change. At Esri, we are always deeply inspired by the passion and innovation of our users. They deserve recognition for both solving their communities’ greatest challenges and for their invaluable contributions to the continued evolution of geographic science.”

For more information about the 2013 Special Achievement in GIS Award winners, including project information and photos, please visit the Esri website.