Regional PUGs round-up
What does it take to start up and maintain a regional GIS Petroleum Users Group?
Shared Interest, common issues, leadership…
All this and some more practical things too like time, facilities and sometimes a little funding.
Many Regional groups get their start as a few GIS people share stories of common problems then grow into a more public discussion. Sometimes a centrally located company will offer to host a meeting. The discussions and audience grows into a more frequent event with a social\networking event afterwards. Then in 20 years you have a conference with 1500 attendees. Not all groups will follow this model, but some key learning’s from the groups that have already been around for a while are;
- Maintaining a list of contacts. This can seem like a small bit of work at the beginning with only a dozen or so initial attendees but quickly grows. Maintaining a distribution list of contacts over the years as people move jobs and locations can be troublesome. Let LinkedIn maintain the list. Members can join a group and update their own contact information.
- Funding – Once a group grows beyond a few colleagues gathering at the local watering hole, some kind of sponsorship will be needed for refreshments. Keeping funding fair and transparent may take some effort. Accounting of funds will become necessary at some point. Each region is a bit different about banking requirements but the basic steps for US are; Declare and name organization with state, request EIN from Department of Treasury, Open a bank account as the named organization with designated treasurer and alternate. Apply for tax exempt status 503(c) with IRS. Special thanks to the Denver PUG for sharing the process for bank account creation. Here is a link to help with starting a non-profit http://form1023.org/
Regional PUG News:
The North Texas PUG has put out a call for papers, and is having a happy hour on 10 Oct.
The European PUG will be 6-7 Nov. in London.
The Appalachia PUG is hosting a social event the first week of Nov.
The San Antonio PUG is off to a good start.
The Houston PUG held lively panel discussion on AGOL in Sep.
The Denver PUG meets the second Thursday in Nov.,Feb., May & Aug.
The Australian PUG met in Perth on Aug. 7th
The PUG would like to thank our sponsors for their support: Blueback Reservoir, BP, Coler & Colantonio (a CHA company), Esri, Exprodat, Latitude Geo, Logic Solutions Group, GeoPropel, Landworks, Schlumberger, Spatial Energy, TeachMeGIS and Trimble.