Published: April 1, 2021

Diane Fritz was recently promoted to the position of Geospatial Data Scientist, a position dedicated to helping the Auraria Library research community. Fritz received her B.S. in biochemistry from University of California, San Diego and her Ph.D. in earth sciences from the University of Colorado Boulder before entering the geospatial field. Fritz’s role is to help all researchers on campus find the data they need and point them to technologies and methods that will help them explore, analyze and visualize that data.

Within the wide variety and rapidly expanding set of geospatial technologies and data methods, Fritz explores as many as possible to serve the diverse researchers on campus. From the suite of ESRI applications, to FOSS (Free and Open Source Software) options, to geospatial community projects like OpenStreetMap, Dr. Fritz does her best to keep her fingers on the pulse of what is available for working with data. In addition to running workshops and research consultations from the library, Dr. Fritz runs a group called MaptimeMileHigh open to students, faculty, community professionals and hobby-ists for exploring location information topics. The monthly group meetings are posted on the geospatial events calendar on the library’s geospatial services page.

Fritz is a member of CU Denver’s Data Science Organizing committee and works to make interdisciplinary connections in the Data Science Community Hub developing on campus. In addition, she facilitates a student Python coding group that meets biweekly called PyFAST. These meetings are also posted on the geospatial events calendar along with the MaptimeMileHigh gatherings and other geospatial opportunities. Due to her work in these communities over the past years, she was approached and elected to serve on the OpenStreetMap U.S. Board. In this position, she hopes to involve a more diverse audience in contributing to the global open database that is OpenStreetMap. Increasing community awareness of OSM will elevate its membership, use and contributions making it an even more valuable resource.

Fritz is available at diane.fritz@ucdenver.edu, library.auraria.edu/researcher-support/geospatial-services, and onTwitter: @fritzgis.