Nicholas Dilley heads the county’s mapping department

LANCASTER − Nicholas Dilley certainly knows a lot about cards. He better, because he’s in charge of Fairfield County’s mapping system.

Dilley is the manager of the county’s Geographic Information System and Mapping Room. He began his career as an intern with the county in the GIS department in 2000 and became the director earlier this year.

Map room employees verify deeds, legal descriptions, and surveys in county subdivisions and other development areas, among other things. They work with the county engineer to ensure their work meets state standards.

GIS workers maintain digital files for county mapping, with real estate being the primary focus.

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“But we also support other county departments, such as the Public Utilities Department,” Dilley said. “911 uses our routes and address files. And we work with a public committee that researches Zane’s Trace, so we helped them map out where the trace originally went. So really, all kinds of maps. It’s interesting.”

The Dilley office works with 71,368 addresses and 8,941 road segments when working with the county 911 center.

In addition to being computer savvy, Dilley said he has to be thorough to do his job, as his departments deal with a lot of information.

“Because we try to keep everything very precise,” he said. “When splits and things like that happen and we put the packages together like a giant jigsaw puzzle, we try to keep it as accurate as possible when we look at neighboring photos and polls to try to make things look s line up and look correct.”

Dilley said he also had to be prepared to do the same thing over and over again.

“There are a lot of projects where you’re going to review thousands of records, so you have to like the maps,” he said. “I think part of that too is you have to like the history. There’s a lot of good history in Fairfield County. Often when you’re looking for deeds and investigations in the map room, you’ll have to running things back 100 years to make sure things make sense.”

Dilley is a graduate of Amanda-Clearcreek High School and the Fairfield Career Center. He got his associate’s degree in geography from Hocking College, but maybe not in design. Dilley was with his brother who had business at school when he found a geography pamphlet.

“I started reading it and thought it sounded pretty interesting,” he said. “So I really found it there and decided to go and have been doing it ever since.”

Outside of work, Dilley enjoys woodworking, astronomy, and spending time outdoors and with his wife, Amanda, and their children.

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Twitter: @JeffDBarron

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