Joel Lawhead is a PMI-certified Project Management Professional (PMP) and the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for NVisionSolutions.com, an award-winning firm specializing in geospatial technology integration and sensor engineering.
He began using Python in 1997 and began combining it with geospatial software development in 2000. He has been published in two editions of the Python Cookbook by O'Reilly. He is also the developer of the widely used open source Python Shapefile Library (PyShp) and maintains the geospatial technical blog GeospatialPython.com and Twitter feed @SpatialPython discussing the use of the Python programming language within the geospatial industry.
In 2011, he reverse engineered and published the undocumented shapefile spatial indexing format and assisted fellow geospatial Python developer, Marc Pfister, in reversing the algorithm used, allowing developers around the world to create better-integrated and more robust geospatial applications involving shapefiles.
He has served as the lead architect, project manager, and co-developer for geospatial applications used by US government agencies including NASA, FEMA, NOAA, the US Navy, as well as many commercial and non-profit organizations. In 2002, he received the international "Esri Special Achievment in GIS" award for work on the Real-time Emergency Action Coordination Tool (REACT) for emergency management using geospatial analysis.