The College of Natural Resources and the Virginia Tech Alumni Association jointly presented Anthony P. Foisy with the Young Alumnus Award - Undergraduate Degree. The Young Alumnus Award is annually presented to a recent graduate who exemplifies early career accomplishment and service to the college and university.
Foisy graduated in May 2002 with a B.A. in geography. During his junior and senior years at Virginia Tech, he held the position as cartographer for the Virginia Geographic Alliance. As cartographer, Foisy created maps for publication in An Atlas of Virginia, which all public schools in Virginia currently use for the SOL Curriculum.
After graduation, Foisy served as a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Specialist in Prince William County, Va. As a GIS specialist, he designed custom GIS applications for mosquito and gypsy moth surveillance and control; implemented mobile GIS technology; produced high-quality maps for the county’s web page; and coordinated with local, state, and federal agencies regarding insect spraying and environmental and legal issues. Subsequently, Foisy worked as GIS coordinator for the Department of Transportation in Fairfax, County. In this position he designed a GIS training program to instruct departmental personnel, and within one year the percentage of department employees using GIS jumped from 25 percent to 66 percent. He also implemented geographical data to improve web-based technologies and business processes.
In 2005, Foisy accepted a position as GIS Manager for Midland, Michigan. As GIS Manager, he is responsible for the overall coordination, implementation, and operation of the entire city’s GIS. His responsibilities include: managing the city’s GIS base map and associated layers, supervising support staff, and directing and monitoring the performance of consultants in the development and integration of GIS.
In addition to Foisy’s early career achievements, he has also had other accomplishments. For example, in 2003, the journal Geospatial Solutions recognized his article, “Using GIS To Manage Forest Pests” as one of the “Best Apps of 2003” in the Applications Contest. In 2004, one of his maps won first place in the ESRI Middle Atlantic User Group Annual Conference poster competition. Two of Foisy’s maps will be included in ESRI’s 2006 Map Book, Volume 21. ESRI Map Books acknowledge “important and innovative accomplishments of GIS users around the world.”
In receiving the award, Foisy stated, “I am honored to receive the Young Alumnus Award from the College of Natural Resources at Virginia Tech. My education provided me with the knowledge and skills necessary to build a solid foundation for my professional career in Geographic Information Systems (GIS). As a GIS manager, I constantly rely on these skills to solve complex problems throughout my organization. I thank the professors at the College of Natural Resources at Virginia Tech, especially Bill Carstensen, for their hard work, discipline, and dedication. I am proud to call Virginia Tech my alma mater. Go Hokies!”
The College of Natural Resources at Virginia Tech consistently ranks among the top five programs of its kind in the nation. Faculty members stress both the technical and human elements of natural resources and instill in students a sense of stewardship and land-use ethics. Areas of studies include environmental resource management, fisheries and wildlife sciences, forestry, geospatial and environmental analysis, natural resource recreation, urban forestry, wood science and forest products, geography, and international development.