Jim Sparks is former Director, Geoinformatics for The Polis Center, retiring June 30, 2021. He continues to lend his expertise to Polis’ work as a consultant, with an initial assignment to complete a strategic plan for the Indiana Geographic Information Office (GIO).
A highly-experienced geospatial information professional, Jim has spent the majority of his career working with geospatial information. Prior to joining Polis, he served as Indiana’s first Geographic Information Officer which entailed coordinating the statewide geospatial efforts and integrating, creating, and distributing geospatial data.
Previously, Jim was integral to the development of the Indianapolis Mapping and Geographic Infrastructure System (IMAGIS), serving as project manager for the data conversion component. This substantial effort converted paper and digital data into GIS layers to create a geographic information system for Marion County, Indiana. Upon completion, IMAGIS was recognized as noteworthy for its size, complexity, and the level of benefit that it delivered.
He received national recognition for leading Indiana’s efforts to become a spatially-enabled state, allowing Indiana to take advantage of emerging trends like smart cites and the Internet of Things.