The Columbia Regional Geospatial Service Center at Stephen F. Austin State University has been honored for its services with two awards.

The Columbia Center received the Founder's Award from the South Central Arc Users Group for "being instrumental in changing the future of geospatial information systems in the South Central United States" at the annual SCAUG convention this March in Fort Worth, Texas.

The Founder's Award was created in 1990 to recognize agencies or individuals that have made contributions enhancing the importance of geospatial science and advancing the use of GIS. The awarded agency is identified as a GIS leader that has set a new standard within the SCAUG region. The award is based upon the innovative use of current technology, a creative approach to GIS business processes, the recent integration of major program initiatives and community outreach.

SCAUG is one of the premier GIS user groups in the region, and the Columbia Center is an active of the organization.

"The Founder's Award reflects the impact Columbia Center personnel have had on the regional geospatial community over many years," said P.R. Blackwell, director of the Columbia Center. "I am very proud of our GIS staff and what they have been able to contribute to the industry and our region."

The Columbia Center will also be recognized for its involvement with the Research and Education Data Depot network (REDDnet) project. REDDnet will receive the Internet2 Driving Exemplary Applications (IDEA) award at the Internet2 Spring Member's Meeting in Arlington, Va. later this month. The IDEA award recognizes and promotes innovative advanced network applications that have technical merit and a positive impact on the research and education community.

The Columbia Center, through its TexasView Remote Sensing Consortium (the AmericaView Member Consortium for Texas) is the lead agency for the AmericaView/REDDnet project which provides satellite data storage and distribution to researchers and educators for a wide variety of applications. REDDnet makes it possible to move large files over high-speed networks up to 10 times faster than traditional file transfer protocols.

"The IDEA award is gratifying in another way in that it recognizes one of the Columbia Center's research areas," Blackwell said.

"The impact of REDDnet and the technology it represents is being felt in many diverse fields. It's good to know that the Columbia Center through the TexasView project is responsible for bringing this technology to the geospatial arena."