HIFLD community awarded the 2018 Doug D. Nebert Award

HIFLD logo fullresFGDC Community,

It is my great pleasure to announce that the recipient of the 2018 Doug D. Nebert National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) Champion of the Year Award is the Homeland Infrastructure Foundation-Level Data (HIFLD) community in support of the 2017 Hurricane season. Leveraging the GeoPlatform shared-service, the HIFLD community collaboratively delivered geospatial data and services to communities and first-responders to help minimize and recover from hurricane impacts. The award honors Doug Nebert, who was a respected Federal Geographic Data Committee colleague, technical visionary, and recognized National and International leader in the establishment of spatial data infrastructures.

The HIFLD open data portal established through the GeoPlatform shared-service provides National foundation-level geospatial data within the open public domain that can be useful to support community preparedness, resiliency, research, and more.  The HiFLD open data portal enables the dissemination of over 300 publically accessible Homeland Security Infrastructure Program (HSIP) data products and web services. Since its inception in February 2016, this HIFLD open site has been used by over 35,472 users with over 31,695 downloads of data.

In response to Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, HIFLD members worked collaboratively to provide a common centralized open site, using GeoPlatform.gov, to host and publish unclassified publicly available geospatial data, applications, tools, and web services.  HIFLD4Harvey and HIFLD4Irma (which was also used to support Hurricane Maria) served as authoritative sources of geospatial data and services to 12,850 users with over 2,920 downloads in a little over 30 days of being stood up. These portals became an authoritative source of relevant data for use by local, state, federal, tribal, private-sector and community partners. They served as a hub to aggregate and disseminate open data to support the mapping activities for hurricane response and recovery.  This first-of-its-kind type of operational response by HIFLD has been met with great enthusiasm and direct positive feedback from the Executive Office of the White House, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), and boots-on-the-ground first responders.

The Homeland Infrastructure Foundation-Level Data (HIFLD) community was established in February 2002 to address improvements in collection, processing, sharing, and protection of homeland infrastructure geospatial information across multiple levels of government, and to develop a common foundation of homeland infrastructure data to be used for visualization and analysis on all classification domains. The HIFLD community led by the Department of Defense, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Interior, and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency includes 5,860 mission partners representing 14 Federal Executive Departments, 98 Agencies, 53 States and Territories, and more than 700 private sector participants.

The HIFLD Subcommittee of the FGDC attracts a voluntary coalition of Federal, State, and Local government organizations and supporting private industry partners who are involved with geospatial issues related to Homeland Defense/Security, Emergency Preparedness and Response, or Civil Support members and non-federal contributors are involved in a wide range of different functions including Critical Infrastructure Protection, Crisis and Consequence Management, Intelligence and Threat Analysis, Antiterrorism/Force Protection, Defense Support to Civil Authorities, Man-Made and Natural Hazard Modeling, and Government Facilities Management.

The HIFLD initiative embodies the principles in OMB Circular A-16, applies National Geospatial Data Asset (NGDA) data for decision-making, and meets all eight foundational precepts of the Doug D. Nebert Award selection criteria.

Team members of HIFLD include:

From the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency

  • Rexford Tugwell, Mike Piscotti, John Carlin, Lina Dailide-Custodio, John Murtagh, William Nellist, Justin Reed, Todd Coon

From the National Alliance for Public Safety GIS

  • Peter O’Rourke, Rebecca Harned, Tari Martin, Angela Pervél, Paul Doherty

From the Department of the Interior

  • Tod Dabolt, Kayloni Ah Tong

From the Department of Homeland Security, Geospatial Management Office

  • Lewis Summers, Michael Bergman, Chris Brehany, Travis Hardy, Julie Eckert, Zachary Gordon, Matt Pagan, Jonathan Rayer, Nate Smith, Robert Shumowsky

From the Department of Homeland Security, Federal Emergency Management Agency

  • Chris Vaughan, Dante Terango, Brad Bottoms, Julie Carter


  • Bill McGilvery

  • Stuart Rucker, Charmel Menzel

Booz Allen

  • Tom Springsteen

  • Katie Zezima

I also want to thank all of the participants that submitted nominations. We had a number of excellent nominees and we appreciate the interest from the community.

Please join me in congratulating the HIFLD Team on their award.


Timothy Petty, Ph.D
Chair, FGDC