Last year, the GSF sent two representatives to the 2017 GEOINT Symposium in San Antonio–and we were blown away by the number of GSF Partners in attendance! We know that GEOINT (GEOspatial INTelligence) is extremely important to SOF operations, but we were still a little surprised that our partners were so well represented.
Cut to 2018, when the GEOINT Symposium was occurring right in our own home base–Tampa. We knew we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to get involved.
On Monday, after getting checked in and seeing several of our Corporate Partners as event sponsors, we hit the exhibit hall running. Using a “divide and conquer” tactic, we made sure to visit all of our 15+ Corporate Partners with booths. This was actually pretty cool–we had some in-person meetings that had been solely digital for years. Plus, it’s hard to beat a face-to-face discussion with a phone call or email.
We also got some great swag…the GSF Director of Partner Relations– Steve Jones– is going to have some sweet looking feet! Thank you to OGSystems and Spatial Networks for the socks.
After we caught up with all of our existing partners, we had the opportunity to check out the latest in GEOINT technologies and capabilities.
That evening, we were able to attend a few of our Partners’ receptions, including Maxar Technologies, General Dynamics, and Peraton. We were also lucky enough to attend the USGIF Chairman’s Reception, which for the second year running had a great spread of food and some high-level attendees.
Tuesday was the big day for the GSF–we hosted our first ever GSF Huddle at the GEOINT Symposium. Held in the nearby and beautiful Waterfront Room at Jackson’s Bistro, we had a spread of tasty appetizers (mostly meatballs) and an open bar, ready to host our SOF-focused members of this GEOINT community.
We were very pleased when over 150 people showed up at the Huddle, sharing old war stories, talking about upcoming opportunities, and enjoying the hospitality of the GSF and the Jackson’s staff.
Our registration table was expertly manned by Shannon Coker, the GSF Operations Coordinator, and our current SkillBridge Intern–Chuck Neu. The rest of the attending staff–including Stu Bradin, Meaghan Keeler-Pettigrew, and Chelsea Hamashin–mixed and mingled with attendees, Corporate Partners, and long-lost colleagues. Also a big Thank You to our Corporate Partner Barbaricum for picking up the bar tab!
With our inaugural GSF Huddle’s end–the night was still far from over. GSF Corporate Partner CACI was hosting an event just downstairs, so we stopped in to say hello before heading back across the bridge where two of our partners, Spatial Networks and Boundless, were jointly hosting a reception. The dance floor was a little lonely when we arrived, but we made sure to change that and showed off our two-step skills.
To wrap up the week, the GSF signed on to be a Sponsor of the SOFWERX Hack-N-Hunt event. This geospatially focused event is taking place in Ybor City, and is challenging teams to compete in a variety of activities and conversations. You can learn more about it here.
Thank you to USGIF for hosting another great event, and we look forward to building and growing relationships with these GEO-minded people and companies for many Symposiums to come!