In 2012, a team of professors, experts and students from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s National Resources Management & Environmental Sciences Department was hired to perform a study of the Hind River Ranch, located on a reach of the upper Salinas River in San Luis Obispo County. The current Ranch owners were concerned that historic man-made changes on the 800 acre property were having a negative impact on the Salinas River. During a period of six months, the team performed extensive GIS mapping of the Ranch property, from elevations, power lines, buildings and trails, to roads, streams and fire breaks. Quantifying all of the resources on the ground provided the team with valuable data to create an ecosystem management plan for the Ranch owners. The team will discuss the use of GIS as a common language to share and understand information among diverse participants. Gathering, sharing and understanding information is vital for developing a comprehensive river management plan.
Douglas Piirto, PhD – Professor and Department Head of NRES, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
Dr. Piirto earned his MS in Forest and Wood Science from Colorado State University and a PhD in Wood Science from UC Berkeley. He has taught at Cal Poly since 1985 and teaches courses on silviculture, forest harvesting, environmental impact analysis, forest management, and other forestry/conservation courses. He has served on the federal advisory Giant Sequoia National Monument Science Board and the State Pitch Cancer Task Force. Dr. Piirto has spent a good part of his career working as a practicing forester for the Forest Service and as a private consultant. As a researcher, Dr. Piirto is nationally recognized for his expertise on giant sequoia and coast redwood.
David Yun, GISP
David was born in South Korea and moved to USA during his teenage years. He served in U.S. Navy for 6 ½ years as a Machinist Mate trained for nuclear power reactor. He received B.S. and M.S. degrees from Natural Resources Management and Environmental Sciences Department at Cal Poly. David started to teach GIS in 1998 and is currently teaching both introductory and advanced GIS classes at Cal Poly. David is also the GIS Supervisor for the City of San Luis Obispo. David is a certified GIS Professional.
Tom Mastin is currently a lecturer in the BioResource and Agricultural Engineering Department, California Polytechnic State University San Luis Obispo. Mr. Mastin teaches engineering surveying, advanced surveying, photogrammetry and remote sensing classes as well as being one of the coordinators for the GIS in Agriculture minor. Mr. Mastin has been involved with various projects over his term at Cal Poly, including one in Ecuador, a number of projects on and around Cal Poly’s Swanton Ranch and now on the Hind Ranch near Santa Margarita.