Charting our past, defining our future: NGA in History
A history project that documents some of the innovators, leaders and defining moments from NGA's past. The project is designed to provide an introduction to not only NGA, but to the history of geospatial-intelligence and all the intelligence disciplines, heritage organizations and trailblazers that came before. For those already familiar with GEOINT the project gives a better understanding of NGA’s importance to national security.
From Lewis and Clark, to World War II, to the Osama bin Laden raid, each update will highlight a defining moment in GEOINT. NGA will also highlight the leaders of our past, from National Photographic Interpretation Center (NPIC) Director Arthur Lundahl, to current NGA Director Robert Cardillo.
With its roots in cartography, mapping and imagery analysis, GEOINT is a highly evolved intelligence discipline that goes beyond telling you what is happening, where it is happening and when it is happening — it also reveals how it is happening, why it matters and what is likely to happen next. The term was adopted in 2003 by Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, Jr. to properly describe the mission of the agency.
The agency was founded in 1996 as the National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA). “The history of NGA goes well beyond our name change or even the founding of NIMA,” said Dr. Gary E. Weir, NGA historian. “Look back at the defining moments of our country – from the Revolutionary War on – and you will find GEOINT. Our history is American history.”
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