Robert L. Nichols Professional Service Award: Robert Wood

Congratulations to Robert Wood, a GIS Analyst in Freese and Nichols’ Fort Worth office, for receiving our Robert L. Nichols Professional Service Award for his commitment to professional development.

Robert has been active in the Texas Chapter of Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (URISA), a leading GIS organization for public agencies and consulting firms. Through this organization, opportunities for networking and continuing education are offered to GIS professionals. Robert has served in a variety of roles with URISA, including as the President of the Texas Chapter in 2021. He currently is past president and remains active on the board. He has hosted URISA training events at Freese and Nichols facilities and attended association meetings.

In addition to his role with URISA, Robert also recently began a role on the advisory board for the Tarrant County College GIS program. In this role, he provides guidance to the faculty on educational topics and opportunities for students to gain experience through internships. Throughout his career, Robert has sought opportunities to contribute to the GIS profession even while taking on more and more responsibilities at Freese and Nichols. Upon the release of ArcGIS Pro, Robert developed a training video to help his team transition from ArcMap.

In 2021, while serving as URISA Texas President, he played a key role as the GIS leader for our Texas State Flood Plan contracts. These projects are very GIS intensive and required the support of nearly 10 GIS analysts across the company. Robert was the lynchpin for the entire process, coordinated with the various regions and took the lead on learning the Texas Water Development Board (TWDB) guidance. Multiple times he has provided guidance to the TWDB on improvements to their standard geodatabases.

Robert recognizes the importance of GIS, not only to the industry but specifically to Freese and Nichols. He also understands and maximizes the platform he has at Freese and Nichols, by amplifying his knowledge and skills and placing his fellow GIS Analysts in positions where they can grow and thrive.

The award is named after Bob Nichols, Freese and Nichols’ President from 1988-1991, a nationally recognized environmental engineer and advocacy for ethics in engineering. In addition to his technical expertise, his leadership as the Texas Society and National President of the National Society of Professional Engineers led to significant changes to the Society’s Code of Ethics. More about Bob.