GIS Capacity Building Project: 2018 Highlights

GIS participants talking.

In 2018, the GIS Capacity Building Project offered two advanced trainings in February and April to health departments that were competitively selected.

Advanced GIS Training is designed for staff with moderate to strong GIS skills. The theme was GIS and Blood Pressure Medication Adherence.

Maps Created by State Health Departments

Click on a state to see selected maps with key messages and technical details. A list of health department staff who participated in the GIS training is also included.

These maps highlight how health department staff are using their GIS skills from the training to address chronic disease priorities.

February Advanced GIS Training

April Advanced GIS Training

Project Background

The focus of the GIS Capacity Building Project is to enhance the use of GIS within health departments to:

  • Document geographic disparities in chronic diseases.
  • Inform chronic disease policies and program development.
  • Enhance partnerships with external agencies.
  • Facilitate collaboration among chronic disease units within a health.

Participant Feedback

GIS participants in a classroom.

“I thought the training, training team, and facilities were great. I also really appreciated the opportunity to work with other states. It is great to be able to learn about/from other states doing similar work!”

“The training being tailored and available for each state made [it] so useful…giving me tools and data relevant to the work I will be doing and starting some mapping projects that I could use after we left.”


The following staff from each of the participating agencies provided valuable contributions to the success of this project’s ability to enhance the use of GIS within health departments for the prevention and treatment of heart disease, stroke, and other chronic diseases.

  • Georgia: Monyette Childs, Elizabeth Otwell
  • Idaho: Robert Graff, Derrick Snow
  • Maine: Pamela Foster Albert, Sara Huston, Nathan Morse, Gregory Parent, David Pied, Caitlin Pizzonia, Nona Tsotseria
  • Michigan: Kily Buta, Michelle Byrd, Chris Wojcik, Adrian Zeh
  • New York: Paige Allen, Rachel Austin, Ian Brisette, Margaret O. Casey, Donghong (Dawn) Gao, Lara Kaye, Tiana Wyrick
  • South Dakota: Ashley Miller, Lexi Pugsley
  • Vermont: Paul Meddaugh, Mallory Staskus
  • Wisconsin: Megan Elderbrook, Lena Swander, Kari Trapskin, Shelby Vadjunec
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Michele Casper, Jeff Durthaler, Sharon Murphy, Matt Ritchey, Linda Schieb, Adam Vaughan
  • Children’s Environmental Health Initiative at Rice University: Brandi Gih, Jocelyn Hwang, Ruiyang Li, Marie Lynn Miranda, Joshua Tootoo
  • National Association of Chronic Disease Directors: MaryCatherine Jones