Town of Riverview / News / Mapping Her Way Home - Karla MacPherson Brings GIS Consulting to Riverview
Karla holding her map and logo

Mapping Her Way Home - Karla MacPherson Brings GIS Consulting to Riverview

Karla MacPherson brings over ten years of professional experience in GIS (geographic information systems) to Riverview. Having moved from New Brunswick to Alberta in 2011, her decision to make the fifth largest municipality in the province home again was easy. Karla embraced the challenge of starting her own business as a GIS consultant.  

“I am a first-time business owner. I do not have any sort of business background, but I do know GIS and I love it,” says Karla. “I believe in my business, and I know there are other businesses and organizations out there who would benefit from my services. My philosophy is that you can take advantage of GIS no matter the size of your organization or your budget. My goal when starting KarMa GIS Consulting Services was to focus on the smaller municipalities and businesses and show them how GIS can help them for a relatively small cost.” 

GIS is a growing field that creates, manages, and analyzes maps and varieties of data. It requires precise detail and creativity and can be applied to many types of organizations.  

“GIS is all about location and data visualization,” says Karla. “I might be driving and see playgrounds and imagine how an online map with pictures and descriptions of each playground would be helpful to parents looking for a place to bring their children. Or when I'm on a company’s website, I think about how creating a map to showcase their information would be appealing to viewers and potential clients. I see the potential of GIS everywhere!” 

Returning to the Riverview community after a decade in another province, Karla was struck by the growth of her hometown. While staple businesses that hold core memories for her are still thriving, it is encouraging to see the business community also welcome new entrepreneurs. It is this supportive and attractive environment that allows all residents to thrive.  

Be sure to visit Karla’s website to see her gallery with a variety of printable maps she has built — you are sure to see some familiar places, such as the Art in Your Face event along the Riverfront Trail. She has even created a digital town demonstrating the data analysis potential of GIS mapping. Please join us as we extend a warm Riverview “welcome home” to Karla!   

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