mcso know your zoneGeographic Information System Provider Esri Honors Monmouth County at Annual User Conference

FREEHOLD, NJ – Monmouth County recently received the Special Achievement Graphic Information System Award from Esri, a global leader in spatial analytics, at its annual Esri User’s Conference. The County was selected from more than 300,000 eligible candidates for its innovative application of mapping, data analytics, and thought leadership after the Office of Emergency Management and the Division of Planning developed a story map for the High Water Mark Initiative and the implementation of the “Know Your Zone” campaign.

The “Know Your Zone” public awareness campaign is designed to educate residents, visitors and businesses as to which evacuation zone they live, work or visit. The program is one of kind here in New Jersey and provides a simple process for people to learn their evacuation zone. Simply visit, click on find your zone, insert your address, and the map will show you which zone you are in. The website has had more than 13,000 inquiries since it launched in September of 2016. In 2017, as part of National Preparedness Month, the county initiated the installation of 70 signs in various locations within our coastal communities as another public outreach measure. 

“This is a great accomplishment and I am extremely proud of the efforts that the Monmouth County Office of Emergency Management team is doing to ensure public safety during weather related events,” said Sheriff Shaun Golden, whose agency runs the Office of Emergency Management. “There is no office more deserving of the recognition and I commend all for their commitment in building resiliency against the impacts of storms.”

The High Water Mark Initiative was originally launched in June of 2016 and promotes flood risk awareness. During the original launch, Monmouth County and 14 local and federal partners placed 100 signs in prominent locations in various municipalities. Since the original launch, the County and its partners have continued to expand upon the outreach efforts with the High Water Mark Story Map being the most recent. The story map guides viewers through various historical events that are designed to raise public awareness about resiliency and risk mitigation efforts that are taking place throughout Monmouth County. In addition to the County Division of Planning and Emergency Management, the High Water Mark Initiative is supported by partners from the Monmouth University’s Urban Coast Institute, New Jersey Sea Grant Consortium and FEMA’s National Flood Insurance Program. To learn more about it and to see the GIS story map go to the Division of Planning section of the County’s website at


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“The joint partnerships that have been developed as part of this program is a clear indication that educating the public about the risks of flooding is a whole community responsibility and we are honored to be recognized by Esri for our groundbreaking use of GIS Story Map technology,” said Freeholder Deputy Director Lillian G. Burry. “The High Water Mark Initiative story map would not have been possible without the efforts of the Monmouth County Division of Planning, the Monmouth County Office of Emergency, Monmouth University’s Urban Coast Institute (UCI) and the NJ Sea Grant Consortium.”

“The success of this program is further under scored by contributing to saving the residents of Monmouth County over $1.8 million dollars in annual flood insurance premiums”, added

Freeholder Burry.

As Monmouth County recognizes the prestigious award now is also the time to also remind residents that now is the time to make the appropriate plans, have a preparedness kit, Know Your Zone, and complete an insurance check up to ensure that you have the proper coverage for hurricanes and other storms

“The actions you take today will help to insure that you and your family can re-cover efficiently should we be impacted by a storm,” said Sheriff Golden.

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Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...