I collaborate with mission driven, conservation minded organizations. My interests include human geography, urban conservation, critical GIS, GIS for crisis response, and digital humanitarianism. I’m curious how data and geographic information systems can produce empowering or adverse impacts for the communities they intend to serve. Additionally, how the social mechanisms, infrastructure, and politics behind behind these systems influence on-the-ground results.

Trail Inventory & Construction at
Cove Mountain Preserve

Cove Mountain Preserve’s historic use for timber harvest produced a maze of overgrown logging roads throughout its forests. Community volunteers utilized Avenza Maps to translate their local knowledge into GIS data from which a logical network of trails were derived. By the end of summer these trails were open for public recreation.

Stream Mapping at
Great Smoky Mountains National Park

This StoryMap describes a day’s work as a Stream Mapper with the National Park Service. Stream Mappers use GIS to predict missing tributaries, navigate arduous terrain to find them, then conduct hydrologic and biological assessments. They data they collect contributes to the National Hydrography Dataset. (this app doesn’t play nice with phones)

Water Quality Atlas for
The Environmental Quality Institute

Produced for the Environmental Quality Institute, this series of maps visualizes water quality data collected throughout Western North Carolina. At some locations samples have been collected by volunteers for over fifteen years.

Collector Application for
Vernal Pools Assessment

With this application, LEAF interns (Leaders in Environmental Action for the Future) learned to navigate in the field and collect data using Collector for ArcGIS. Interns logged their removal of invasive vegetation and restoration efforts of vernal pools.

LightHawk Flight Planning to Host
PA Congressman Charlie Dent

To promote conservation of the Kittitanny Ridge, The Nature Conservancy hosted Pennsylvania Congressman Charlie Dent on a LightHawk flyover of several key protection areas. GIS was utilized for flight planning and to enable tablets with digital location maps during flight.

2018 Healthy Lands & Waters
Birding Challenge Map

This interactive webmap displays all Pennsylvania locations for The Nature Conservancy’s annual Birding Challenge. This map was produced to promote the event via social media, email invitations, and volunteer newsletters.

In Development:

GIS Analysis - Co-Benefit Development In Siting Green Stormwater Infrastructure

Philadelphia Water Department’s Green Cities, Clean Waters initiative aims to manage the city’s combined sewer overflow system with 100% green stormwater infrastructure. The Nature Conservancy has partnered to aggregate social and ecological co-benefits into these projects. A team of community stakeholders, GIS professionals, engineers, conservationists and the city of Philadephia are working together to create habitat, reduce pollution, and improve quality of life.

Data not yet available to the public. 

In Development:

GIS Analysis - Multistate Working Woodlands Landowner Assessment

Working Woodlands is a forest conservation program which leverages the voluntary carbon market to fund improved forest management and conservation. Originating in Pennsylvania, this program is now growing in several other states. These analyses and web-tools are helping conservation directors prioritize efforts as well as identify landowners and build relationships with potential enrollees.

Data not yet available to the public.
preston welker : calgary, ab : 2020 :  ︎ ︎ ︎