2023 Conference Keynotes

April 12th

Ashley Hitt - Senior Vice President of Program Management at Cultivate Geospatial Solutions, Current URISA President

Ashley Hitt, GISP is the Senior Vice President of Program Management at Cultivate Geospatial Solutions, a firm that provides GIS, Data and Enterprise Asset Management expertise and services to all levels of government and private companies. She is a certified GISP and holds a bachelor of science in geography and a master of science in geoscience from Western Kentucky University. She was selected as the URISA Young GIS Professional of the Year in 2011, received the 2017 URISA Leadership Award and the 2020 URISA Service Award, and is URISA President for 2022-23.


April 13th

Steve Aichele - USGS Hydrography Program Lead


Steve Aichele is a Geographer with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Geospatial Program (NGP), currently serving the Hydrography Program and Planning Lead.  Steve started his career with the USGS Michigan Water Science Center primarily working on water quality projects and water resources evaluations in southeast Michigan.  Since 2006, Steve has worked for the USGS NGP as a Geospatial Liaison and as the Hydrography Focus Area Lead, leading both the Hydrography Requirements and Benefits Study – an in-depth accounting of the value of good quality inland hydrography data – and development of the new specifications for Elevation-Derived Hydrography based on lidar data. 

Dr. Aichele holds a BS in Geography from Penn State, and a Masters and Ph.D. in Geography from Michigan State.  His dissertation work studied the effects of climate and land use change on watersheds in the suburbs of Detroit.