We’re A Non-Profit Organization! The Incorporation is Official!

Today we are excited to officially announce that the Standby Task Force is taking the next step in a large push within the crisis-mapping community to professionalize our field. For the SBTF that meant hammering down to the details of what we really do, and do well.

Namely we:

  1. Assist communities affected by disaster through online support and cooperation with local and international responders.
  2. Recruit and train volunteers to assist communities affected by crisis
  3. Coordinate with other agencies, organizations, and crisis mapping volunteers to maximize positive impacts in communities affected by crisis
  4. Provide sustainable and predictable crisis mapping and data informatics services to first responders in crisis situations

In order to achieve these efforts we will be accepting donations and contributions to further these objectives and engage in activities that are within our charitable and educational objectives. We are happy to announce that as of August 21st, 2014 the Standby Task Force is now a recognized Not-for-Profit in the state of Delaware and are in the process of application for Federal tax exemption as a recognized charitable and educational 501 (c)3 organization. The Officers and Directors of the SBTF are listed below. On behalf of all the Directors we want to say thanks to all our members for making this possible by sustaining us with your dedication over the years and to our partners who have pushed us to be better and learn with each deployment we have been activated for.

We have a training coming up next week on September 10th, 2014 from 02:00 pm (14:00) – 08:00 pm (20:00) Eastern Standard Time that will provide members with a practical guide to creating base layers and chloropleth maps utilizing a data set on sexual & gender based violence, trafficking & various human/social development indicators. More information is available here for those interested in participating in this joint training with Development Services International.

How Did We Get Here?

Well, it’s been nearly four years since the Standby Task Force began providing data mapping and crisis informatics services to communities affected by disasters. What started off as a discussion between four individuals at the First Annual International Conference of Crisis-Mapping (ICCM) has grow into a vibrant international community of 1,313 members that represent 79 countries. We have provided direct crisis-mapping, data analytic and crisis communication informatics in 29 official and 33 side deployments. Our partners range from a handful of concerned citizen to large multi-lateral development agencies and our members have continued to demonstrate a dedication to serving directly the individuals and communities affected by both sudden on-set and man-made disasters.

The past four years have transformed our organization and we continue to learn and grow as individual members through this process. Having tested a number of management and decision making structures over the past years we learned by trial and fire what was practical for a loose collaborative of crisis-mapping professional hacking together across time and space. We’ve had challenges and there have been breakdowns. We’ve also achieved incredible success and learned from our mistakes.

Elected Officers of the Board

Justine Mackinnon – Chairwoman of the Board

Per Aarvik – Vice Chairman of the Board

Joyce Monsees – Treasury

Hilary Nicole Ervin – Secretary

Board of Directors

Keera Morrish

Jeannine Lemaire

Helena Puig Larrauri

Patrick Meier

Jaroslav Valuch

Melissa Dawn Elliot

When it came time to elect an initial Board the decision was difficult more so in determining who not to include, because our list was long. In the end it came down to Founders and effective Officers. In the beginning of the year when the SBTF was restricted following a lengthy internal dialogue on structure, decision-making and mission, we elected a 22-member Core Team with a vision of working out the details of how we manage and accomplish our work into an organizational framework that would allow us to professionalize the critical services we provide to the international community in general and those affected by disasters in specific.

We’re all getting excited for the International Conference on Crisis Mapping (ICCM 2014) in New York City this year that runs from November 6th-9th with pre-training sessions and a plethora of community networking and education opportunities. This years conference will spotlight the communities affected by disasters, and our leadership is excited to have the populations we serve at the forefront of our communities discussion on how we carry out this work.

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