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November 20th, 2023
Derik Woo receives Esri Canada’s Making a Difference Award

GIS leader recognized for his significant contributions to the Community Map of Canada program, advancing open data initiatives in the Township of Langley and fostering collaborative solutions.

TORONTO – Esri Canada today presented the 2023 Making a Difference Award to Derik Woo, manager of geomatics services at the Township of Langley, for his leadership in contributing municipal geographic data to be published as part of the Community Map of Canada. The Community Map of Canada is a free, detailed national basemap, built from open and contributed data from authoritative sources, which can be used to develop innovative applications. The Making a Difference Award acknowledges individuals and organizations that use geographic information systems (GIS) to foster positive impacts within and beyond their communities, effectively contributing to a better world.

“Derik Woo has been a strong advocate for data sharing for many years and was one of the early contributors to the Community Map of Canada program when we launched it in 2010,” remarked Alex Miller, president, Esri Canada. “His exceptional support for this program has not only increased the value derived from the Township of Langley’s open data but has also created opportunities to address complex challenges that intersect various domains such as transportation, employment, environment and housing.”

Under Mr. Woo’s leadership, the Township of Langley has contributed several datasets, including land use, rivers, roads, addresses, buildings, trails, zoning, municipal boundaries, neighbourhoods and points of interest, to the Community Map of Canada program. He has also facilitated the automatic updating of these datasets from the Township’s GIS to the GeoFoundation Exchange, which powers the Community Map of Canada—resulting in significant time and cost savings.

By sharing data through the Community Map of Canada, Mr. Woo enables individuals and organizations to access crucial information, empowering them to analyze various issues that transcend municipal boundaries. This also encourages the public to contribute and collaborate on citizen-led innovations to address community issues.

“The power of shared data lies in its ability to address issues comprehensively,” said Derik Woo. “The GIS community is collaborative and supportive. Everyone has a place and a part to play. I wanted to do my part to support and gain a lot in return from the community. By collaborating and sharing through the Community Map of Canada program, we are collectively taking strides towards innovative solutions for our communities.”

Explore the Township of Langley’s Open Data Portal.

Learn more about the Community Map of Canada at

About Esri Canada

Founded in 1984, Esri Canada provides geographic information system (GIS) solutions that empower people in business, government and education to make informed and timely decisions by leveraging the power of mapping and spatial analytics. These solutions enable organizations to better manage their resources, plan their future and collaborate within and beyond their organization. Esri Canada’s products and services help advance successful digital transformation. The company serves more than 14,000 organizations from 15 offices across Canada and is based in Toronto. Esri Canada has been recognized as one of Canada’s Best Managed Companies for 11 consecutive years. More information can be found at Follow Esri Canada on X (Twitter), Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and LinkedIn.