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Dear GIS Community,

The keynote speaker of this year's User Conference was Dr. Michael Fay. By now, many of you have probably been exposed to his Megatransect via the National Geographic Society, the Public Broadcasting System, U.S. News & World Report, or other media he has recently been featured in.

Mike shared with us his amazing adventure of crossing the Congo and also his vision of creating a Langoue National Park in Gabon. This part of our planet is one of the richest in the world in terms of biodiversity with all the special plants and animals that we think about when the "Congo" is mentioned.

During the week, Mike also shared that to preserve this region as permanent park land, it takes about $60 to acquire 10 acres, and in the closing session, a small collection was taken and $2,100 was gathered and will be used to set aside the first 350 acres of this Park. This has inspired me to see if our GIS community could come together and permanently create this park.

Most of us want to make a difference in the world and leave a mark that really matters. We each choose different ways to do this based on our personal values. I would like to ask your help by contributing a financial gift and setting aside 10, 20, or 100 acres or more for one of the most precious biological areas in the world-a permanent natural habitat where the gorillas, elephants, etc., can continue to flourish. Do this for yourself, your children . . . give it as a gift . . . as a commitment to preserve . . . and as a footprint of who you are.

I know this will make a difference to future generations. Thank you.

Jack Dangermond

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