James Ashton

Image James Ashton
Agri-Gematics Manager

• Leads and manages the location intelligence and Geomatics capacity and operations in Agriculture Canada that consists of 3 key areas- Geospatial Data Management, Geospatial Application Development, and Geospatial Analysis.
• Provides dynamic location intelligence geomatics services to all AAFC business lines including Science and Technology, Policy, Market Industry Services, International Affairs, Corporate Management and Program branches.
• Evangelizes and develops strategic partnerships within AAFC, Canadian and International Geospatial communities to spread location based technologies far and wide, demonstrating a proven business and IT management background exposing others to digital transformation and innovation capabilities.
• Develops digital materials and data driven solutions to communicate regularly to C-Suite executives on flexible and agile geospatial projects. Multi-disciplinary teams leverage centralized data centric approaches analyzing big problems such as identifying potential vulnerabilities in Canada’s food system during the COVID-19 pandemic.
• Facilitate and develop data driven Road maps, Objectives and Key Results, business cases, budget forecasts and tracking, and technical architectures and presented each to AAFC executives
• Leads the development of new Amazon Web Service (AWS) Continuous Integration Continuous delivery (CICD) AAFC location intelligence platform to store, manage, and web-enable key AAFC business, research and science based datasets.
• Lead, Develop and manage multiple multi-million dollar professional service contracts

Education and awards

B.A. Graduate in Geography specializing in Geographic Information Systems /Geomatics (4 years)

Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario. April 1999.

The GIS department and Laboratory was part of the Geography Department of Arts and Sciences. I completed many GIS and Remote Sensing courses including 4th year courses.

Certificate Geographic Information Systems Applications Specialist. (1 year)

Sir Sandford Fleming School of Environmental Sciences, Lindsay, Ontario. April 2000.

The Certification as a Geographic Information Systems Applications Specialist is a post-graduate advanced diploma specializing in geomatics.

2017 Chief Information Officer Council Community Award - issuer Governement of Canada
2017 ESRI Special Achievement in GIS award - issuer ESRI
2017 Public Service Award of Excellence - Excellence in Profession - issuer Governement of Canada
2016 Public Service Award of Excellence - Excellence in Profession-  issuer Governement of Canada

International experience and/or work

Geographic Information Systems Specialist - (Mekelle Ethiopia - Cairo, Egypt)

Canadian International Development Agency
Dates Employed Mar 2005 – Mar 2008
Employment Duration 3 yrs 1 mo

•Mentored GIS Operation and Data Integration for Tigray Bureau of Water Resource, Mines and Energy (TBWRME) in Mekelle Ethiopia and Water Harvesting and Institutional Strengthening in Tigray (WHIST) Project in Cario, Egypt.

•Conducted and facilitated local GIS software training sessions.

•Provided mobile GIS (ArcPad) support and training for Soil Survey Technicians.

•Assisted local GIS and geospatial data management staff in the configuration of GIS data library and associated technical environment(s).

•Mentored local GIS and data management staff in geospatial data management and quality control procedures.

•Developed procedures and assisted the loading of datasets and developed several value-added data layers.

•Performed integration of information from multiple specialties (Soil, Water, Geology, etc.) using GIS software and Extract Transform and Load (ETL) techniques.