The Committee for Spatial Information (CSI) arranged a surprise farewell event for Dr Clarke during the quarterly meeting held on March 6 2019. The meeting started very well, focusing on the business of the day, deliberating on matters of importance and taking resolutions. The mood changed to a clear-headed moment towards the end of the meeting when members realized that time has come to bid farewell to one of their own.
During the farewell event, members of the CSI shared their experiences working with Dr Clarke and most importantly, sharing their first encounters with him, with some first encounters dating back to over 30 years. Dr Clarke is leaving office as the Chief Director: National Geospatial Information and has served as the chairperson of the CSI for two terms. Known as the father of SASDI, he has unwaveringly put South Africa and Africa on the global map as he represented the country and the region on a number of forums around the world.
In his humble response to the tributes made by members, Dr Clarke said that he has always been driven by the desire to make whatever contribution he could for the benefit of our beloved country and its people. He indicated that despite the evident, visible gray hair, he is too young to stop working and thus, he will continue contributing to the industry as this kind of work is his love, life and passion. He further indicated that he will remain active in the field and hope to have the opportunity to work with many in the future. He wished all members and the Geospatial Information community all the best in taking the SASDI to the next level.
Mr. Morena Letsosa, who currently holds the role of a Deputy Chairperson of the CSI will take over the reigns until the end of the term of office of the CSI.