22 Young Geospatial Professionals to Watch in 2022 – 18 of 22

This entry is part 18 of 22 in the series Young Professionals

Throughout January xyHt.com will feature the young geospatial professionals who are making a name for themselves in everything from surveying to geographic information systems. xyHt featured all of them in the January issue. Here we will spotlight one each day.

Name: Michael Thomas

Company: Woolpert

Current Position: Geospatial/Lidar Technician

Age: 25

Education: MS in Digital Mapping from University of Kentucky; Graduate Certificate in Geographic Information Science and Cartography, University of Kentucky; BA in Geology/Earth Science, College of Wooster

Biography: Michael joined Woolpert as a geospatial/lidar technician in 2019 after earning his undergraduate degree in Geology and Earth Science, has since earned his graduate certificate in GIS and cartography, and is earning his master’s degree in digital mapping. He has been an immense asset to the firm’s busy lidar team by helping process numerous U.S. Geological Survey deliverables and editing point cloud data and hydro breakline extraction. His work includes cleaning and editing classified LAS, bridge breaklines and hydro digitized linework. He also routinely performs quality control, ensuring Woolpert lidar products meet the latest specifications and achieve the highest accuracy.

Michael is a member of the American Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) and volunteers with the Early Career Professionals Council (ECPC). Both groups engage and mentor early career professionals, advocate continuing education, and encourage the dissemination of professional and institutional knowledge and standards through education, mentoring, and technical opportunities.

In his most recent projects, Michael has been processing lidar for work with the Air Force Civil Engineer Center (AFCEC). Dealing with a broader workflow, he manages the classification of calibrated LAS and the creation of final products. Those associated deliverables include bare-earth raster digital elevation models (DEMs), last return DEMs, digital surface models, ASCIIs, mosaics and intensities followed by accuracy reports.

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