The Origins of MAGIC

 

From humble beginnings…

 

MAGIC has grown through the years. Won’t you help us continue to positively impact our communities?

MAGIC is the outgrowth of an informal group of GIS users that began gathering periodically for lunch in area restaurants around 1990 to talk about their experiences and swap tips and ideas. By the mid-90s the group had outgrown the capacity of all but the largest restaurants and began meeting in various university and government auditoriums.  During this period there were a few attempts to participate in or host GIS Day events, some more successful than others. Because the group was unstructured, it relied on whoever was the motivated volunteer at the time for its continued existence. Consequently, activity and interest waxed and waned. As the new millennium began the group was for all practical purposes inactive.

In the summer of 2003 a few of the original members of the group and a few newcomers got together to attempt to host a GIS Day conference. The result was the most successful GIS Day event ever held in the Memphis area with nearly 200 registered attendees, 15 exhibitors, 12 presentation sessions and a buffet keynote luncheon.

During the conference planning, these people decided to try to revive the group. But this time, they decided, there would be a formal structure complete with officers, a board of directors and bylaws. It was decided to pattern the organization after the Tennessee Geographic Information Council (TNGIC) and to seek nonprofit status. They constituted themselves the first Board of Directors of the Memphis Area Geographic Information Council, elected officers from among themselves and adopted the bylaws of TNGIC as a working draft to govern the organization. MAGIC was officially announced to the community at the GIS Day 2003 Conference luncheon.