Joe Francica is the senior director of geospatial strategy with Korem, a privately held company offering a diversified portfolio of geospatial solutions. With over 35 years’ experience in GIS, he has worked in private industry, start-ups and government organizations as both a manager of teams as well as a research data scientist. He founded Directions Magazine’s Location Intelligence Conference in 2004 and has published and broadcast over 500 articles and podcasts on LI as well as contributing to three books.
He is the past editor-in-chief and vice publisher of Directions Magazine; he is the former editor of Business Geographics Magazine and originated the column "GIS in Business" for GIS World Magazine in 1991.
In 2012, Francica founded GEO Huntsville, a 501c6 non-profit, to support geospatial technology business and workforce development and serving Mayor Tommy Battle's economic development advisory council. In conjunction with colleagues at Penn State University, Francica has developed a course entitled “Location Intelligence for Business,” for the university’s online GIS program in 2011.
Francica helped to develop the Geospatial Technology Competency Model (GTCM) in 2010 for the U.S. Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration that seeks to support the creation of model curricular for two- and four-year colleges. In addition, Francica served on the National Visiting Committee for the National Science Foundation supported Geospatial Technology Center of Excellence (Geotechcenter.org).
In his early career, Francica was engaged in developing applications of hyperspectral remotely sensed data for mineral exploration and was one of the first geologists to map the Indus suture zone between India and Pakistan with Landsat imagery. While working for Sun Exploration and Production Company, Francica was active in utilizing Landsat Thematic Mapper data for oil and gas exploration. After receiving his MBA, Francica worked for GIS software companies, Tydac and Intergraph, in management roles.
Personally, Mr. Francica received his bachelor’s degree (BA) from Rutgers University (New Brunswick, New Jersey) in Geology in 1978, followed by a master's degree (MA) in Earth Science from Dartmouth College (Hanover, New Hampshire) in 1980, and a master's degree in business administration (MBA) from the Edwin L. Cox School of Business at Southern Methodist University (Dallas, Texas) in 1989.