ArcGIS Enterprise

Podcast 10- Xander Bakker, Esri Colombia: Once you discover GIS, you can never leave.

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When he started on his journey into adulthood, Xander Bakker did not expect he would end up in a geography-centered profession. He had interests in chemical engineering, environmental sciences, and helping to give back for the greater good.  He had incredible opportunities to work on a variety of different environmental impact assessment projects, including working in Kenya on a Man and Biosphere project with the Maasai.

Via a series of events that can be attributed to luck and definitely not of his own design, Xander found his way to Colombia, South America. He fell in love with the country as well as with an amazing woman from Colombia whom he married. He settled in Medellin, the city of eternal spring, where the weather is amazing, and the breathtaking views make it understandable why anyone could be completely taken in by the country. He then found his way to Esri Colombia, one of our Distributors, where he works with an incredible team to assist the GIS users of Colombia and Ecuador. To paraphrase him, once you find GIS you can never leave it, and Xander has certainly stayed for the long haul.

A few of the myriad examples of how Xander and his team serve his customers include working with them to identify solutions to the challenging problems they face, ensuring they are kept up to date with technological advancements, connecting them with others who have similar experiences, and supporting customers along their conference efforts. The Esri Colombia team also stays connected with their contacts throughout the Esri network to best provide service and support to their user community.

Xander has a passion for GIS and what he does for a living; this is so evident throughout our discussion. We talked about how fortunate he feels to love his work because he never feels like it’s truly work that way. He emphasizes the importance of his family, how much he loves them, and how they inspire him every single day. Xander truly just wants to help people and make the world a better place in the process. His story is unique and it is so compelling to listen to him carry us along his journey. I would be remiss to not share this with you and I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to interview Xander. Please don’t skip this episode; it really is epic!

About the authors

Melissa is an engineer on the product team focused in applied geography. She can be found hiking and exploring national parks during her travels.

Remi is the Product Manager for the ArcGIS Utility Network and spends his free time exploring the US Southwest desert and California beaches.

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