About Us


About Tribal GIS®

The National Tribal Geographic Information Support Center (NTGISC), also known as Tribal GIS®, is a non-profit organization with an objective to provide assistance to Native American tribal governments and Native American organizations regarding geographic information technology. Tribal GIS® brings together an organized environment for novice and advanced tribal GIS users. It strives to enable others to share their success in GIS as this may help another community or program. This organization addresses the challenges of utilizing GIS as a tool within the tribal governments; which assists in making critical decisions for those responsible for the stewardship of their lands, resources, health and well-being of their people.

The specific goal of this organization is to bring awareness to all aspects of implementing and maintaining a successful GIS program by establishing “The Best Practices and Standards for Geographic Information Systems within Indian Country.”

Organizational Outlook

It’s an exciting time for GIS Professionalsas we continue to grow and adapt, remaining always adaptable, motivated, responsive and open to new ideas. Our organization is confronting a time of many changes and we’re meeting these changes during a time of larger nation-wide and global change. The world of geospatial technologies is an exciting area in which to work and study, and we’ll continue to meet and bring inspired people together to ensure our organization remains at the cutting edge.

Since 2009, it has been important for us to bring together an organized environment for novice and advanced tribal GIS users. Most recently we have begun to organize the standing committees for NTGISC to include: Conference/Event Committee, and the Advisory committee. We encourage you to become involved in the organization. As the organization’s network grows, your professional network and opportunities should grow as well.

Fostering Education and Professional Connections

Since 2010, Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute (SIPI) has been a great supporter of not only the Tribal GIS organization, but also the geospatial community that serves Indian Country. Tribal GIS works with SIPI’s Geospatial Information Technologies (GIT) program to enhance their course offerings to fulfill the needs of their certificate program for students, as well as, meet the needs of the full time tribal employee(s). Each year many tribal employees and students are exposed to geospatial technologies and SIPI is that encourage students to solve problems through the world of GIS. As we continue to expand our network, we are actively working to find greater educational opportunities and programs by working with more Tribal Colleges and Universities across the nation. Additionally, NTGISC works with SIPI to host the annual National Tribal GIS Conference. During this event we are able to offer more hands-on workshops, networking opportunities and a platform for informative presentations about technologies and applications.

Developing Partnerships

NTGISC has begun developing formal partnerships with other tribal organizations, tribal colleges and federal agencies to meet not only the objective of the organization, but to also assist with fulfilling the needs of Indian Country by working together with a diverse network of professionals. In moving forward to meet our organizational goals, Tribal GIS plans to expand our capacities and continue to build & strengthen our partner network through National Committees, Federal Agencies, Corporations, non-governmental organizations and foundations, Educational Institutions, and Community based organizations.

Annual Conference

Tribal GIS celebrated its 10th year of fostering education and professional connections at its annual conference in 2019. Join a prestigious group of industry leaders and Tribal GIS professionals who provide valuable information about real world applications of geospatial technologies at our annual conference.


Board of Directors

President, Garet Couch, GISP

Vice President/Treasurer, Letisha Couch, GISP

Secretary, Nikki Lim, J.D.

Board Member, John Ellis, GISP


Advisory Committee

Interm Chair, Byron Bluehorse, University of Alaska Fairbanks

Member, Ryan Spring, Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma

Member, Manerd Gayler, Chickasaw Nation

Member, Suzi Smith, Bad River Band of Lake Superior Chippewa

Member, Steve Street, Association of Village Council Presidents