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2011 Moderator Election

nomination began
Apr 18, 2011 at 20:00
election began
Apr 25, 2011 at 20:00
election ended
May 3, 2011 at 20:00

On Stack Exchange, we believe the core moderators should come from the community, and be elected by the community itself through popular vote. We hold regular elections to determine who these community moderators will be.

Community moderators are accorded the highest level of privilege on our community, and should themselves be exemplars of positive behavior and leaders within the community.

Our general criteria for moderators is as follows:

    <li>patient and fair</li>
    <li>leads by example</li>
    <li>shows respect for their fellow community members in their actions and words</li>
    <li>open to some light but firm moderation to keep the community on track and resolve (hopefully) uncommon disputes and exceptions</li>

Every election has three phases:

  1. Nomination
  2. Primary
  3. Election

Please participate in the moderator elections by voting, and perhaps even by nominating yourself to be a community moderator!

I'm Anita Graser. I've studied GIS and am now working in the field of transportation system research.

I've been promoting this site (on my blog and directly to colleagues) since it's time in Area51. I enjoy spending time on this site, participating and exchanging knowledge. Now, I feel like I could give something back by helping the community as a moderator.

I have been able to gain some experience moderating online communities as (sole) moderator of the official QGIS forums for the last two years. But I'm always trying to improve both my problem solving and my general communication skills.

  • Have a reasonably high reputation (10,000+) to indicate active participation (most days).
  • Good Overall GIS/Cartography/Web Mapping knowledge
  • Good GIS Community based netiquette
  • Open to suggestions, creative and constructive.

Note: already have some mod tools (If you see anything in the system that is evil, weird, or in any way exceptional and deserving can view and approve posts from GISse members without sufficient privileges)

Will continue to answer questions based on GIS in general and support/promote GIS Stack Exchanges community across the globe.


  • 16 Years in GIS since Uni in London, UK
  • 10 Years as a Cartographer/GIS Consultant
  • Currently a Senior Mapping Tech after some freelance work
  • Consultant and production of Maps for National Geographic (subcontract)
  • Blogger for 5 Years (Mapperz Blog)

Blog coverage BBC News, Guardian News and Google Maps Media Coverage.

  • Use Twitter (@mapperz 3500 followers and listed 219 times) to announce blogs and any other geo-related news in real-time.
  • Worked with Social Media and WOMWorld with direct feedback to Nokia Map Developers to improve there Mapping software (offline use and free licencing version 2.00 to version 3.07).
  • Helped and maintain OpenStreetMap media coverage and promote by blog and word of mouth.

I have been an active member since the Beta. My reputation is not too shabby, and I have been fairly consistent with how often I check in to the site - usually around 2-5 times a day.

GIS is a genuine passion for me.
I did a pure GIS degree back in 2000, followed this up with 6 years of GIS consultancy in the Environment sector.
I have worked with a variety of open source and commercial products, but currently concentrate my self-development around the Esri family of applications.

I currently work in Support & Training (2yrs)

  • Helping others is something I enjoy doing and like to think I am pretty good at.
  • I am the technical lead for the Server and Developer teams.
  • Currently certified in Esri Desktop associate and due to take the Developer/Server exams next month. I am also still undertaking my Google Maps certification.

Stack Exchange has helped refine my problem solving abilities, particularly around the art of asking questions.

I also participate on the Meta site, and currently trying get a SE-GIS Blog rolling.

I am also the sole moderator for a blog and forum for a major software company, so hoping that being a moderator for GIS-SE will help me learn how to become a better overall moderator as well.

I've been an active proponent of this site since it's inception in Area51 and a pro-tem moderator since the beta began. I like to think I've done a good job, no one has indicated to me otherwise, though given the high degree of civilness in our community I think it would have to be a pretty major screw up to hear something directly ;-)

I'm willing to continue in this role if the field is thin, but I also think other's should be given a chance. There a some things regular members can do that mod's can't because of the added weight of their authority, perceived and real. Moderator or not I'll continue to throw my energy into building and keeping this a valuable resource.

If you're in a hurry or hate reading long nominations--I'm usually in both situations--just skip to the "credentials" section at the bottom. The rest of it is to let you know more about what you're getting if you vote for me.


What kind of site do you want GIS.SE to develop into?

The vision behind Stack Exchange (as I understand it) is to create communities that generate high quality, enduring, universal answers. This has implications for the questions that we accept, which in turn affects the kind of people we attract to the site.

Daily decisions made by the moderators you elect will subtly influence the kinds of questions that appear and the tenor of the answers. In this fashion the moderators are more than mere "janitors" keeping the pages free of spam and flame wars. They will shepherd the site into its second year and help shape its success. Give some thought to who the candidates are, what they do, and the kinds of questions and answers they have already contributed. Which ones have acted in ways most sympathetic with your vision of this site?


GIS is a wonderful field for many reasons. Chief among them are (a) it unites interesting people from disparate scientific and technical backgrounds, (b) it provides graphical and analytical tools for understanding the world, and (c) it integrates scientific thinking with computing. I would like to see questions (and of course answers) that highlight these aspects.

In case you're wondering, my background is eclectic (like that of many GIS people): advanced degrees in mathematics and significant professional work in university teaching, statistics, environmental investigation, and software development. Yes, I do have some GIS experience too: as a developer, as a consultant, as the former editor of an industry magazine, as the founder of several GIS listservers, and as an active contributor on the ESRI listservers and forums since 1996. (I enjoy building and nurturing online communities with shared interests.) If you would like to know more--the good, the bad, and the ugly-- Google me: I'm Bill Huber and my company is Quantitative Decisions (Pennsylvania, USA).

Having confessed my biases, I would like to emphasize that I don't intend them to get in the way of good moderation. This site belongs to the community: to you. Thus my approach to moderation is to be alert for situations where a decision can affect the nature of this community and to consult you concerning the proper action. These situations come up frequently: when questions are marginally off topic, should they be closed? Modified? Should they cause us to update the FAQ? This conversation takes place in comments and on the meta site. I have been active in both ways: the pundit badge documents that I have contributed many highly-voted comments. On the meta site you will find that I have raised questions about the shape of this community here (progress of GIS StackExchange) and here (what is this site about, really?)


I have worked on making useful contributions to this site:

  • A relatively large number of silver badges (enlightened, good answer, necromancer) attests to many highly voted answers.
  • Several badges document community-building activities: civic duty (voting), convention (activity on meta), strunk & white (editing).
  • A large number of upvotes demonstrates a commitment to encouraging well-formulated questions and good answers.
  • Some downvotes--but not too many (about 2.5%)--is evidence of careful consideration in voting. I'm not afraid to downvote badly formulated questions or incorrect answers, because this is another tool to improve the site.
  • An average score of over 50 points per answer is high for this site, showing a focus on quality over quantity. (However, I greatly respect the many people who are willing to contribute answers to highly specialized questions, even though such answers rarely get many votes. These people deserve to be better recognized.)

I also have relevant experience on other SE sites, including substantial reputation on three others and, recently, as a moderator for one of them. Becoming a moderator increased my commitment to contributing to all these sites and has opened my eyes to the many ways community members can help strengthen and build these resources beyond just answering questions. Whether you vote for me or not, I hope that you also will be inspired to keep growing and enhancing the value of our GIS community here. We have the potential to become the premiere site for GIS: please help make it so.

I'm Shaun Walbridge and would like to be one of your moderators for the GIS Stack Exchange site. I think the site has a great potential to provide a natural meeting ground for GIS users and the neogeography movement alike. Whatever the software tools, thinking spatially is an critical acquired skill, and I've been excited to evangelize the role this site can play in the process.

I'm a graduate student at UCSB, where I study geography and ecology, following my love since childhood of maps. I've worked on many spatial problems ranging from web mapping to global scale environmental simulation to mobile mapping to just making maps for friends, and continue to try and learn the emerging ideas within the field.

I've been actively involved in the site since its launch, and continue to contribute both as a participant and in my role as a pro tem moderator. Owing to the excellent infrastructure and the ground rules of moderation, most of the moderation needs of the site have been fairly straightforward. I've been careful to try and engage new users who perhaps don't quite understand the site, and try to apply only the 'light touch' which is generally all that is needed within the site. I've moderated a number of other online communities, primarily the collaborative websites of my workplace, involving hundreds of interacting students and faculty.

In terms of my participation, I think the election summary statistics tell a fair story, and I recommend evaluating the data to inform your own decision.

This election is over.