Member Spotlight

Nathan Sills

Nathan SillsNathan Sills, geography ’05, is area director for Magnolia River Services, an Alabama-based company providing infrastructure and geospatial services for pipeline, energy, GIS, surveying and mapping. He received a master’s in geography from the University of Alabama, and he specializes in geospatial technologies. A member of the Dean’s Leadership Council for three years, Sills said he feels it’s his duty to give back to Auburn in any way he can. “I want to help students have a great experience like I did at Auburn,” he said. Sills and his wife, Jill, marketing ’04, have a one-year-old son, Nolan, and they live in Birmingham, Ala. In his spare time, Sills enjoys Auburn football, baseball, riding dirt bikes and travel.

Why did you agree to participate in the Dean’s Leadership Council?

First, I always wanted to be involved and give back to Auburn. I had a great experience at the university that I don’t think would have been possible at many other places; especially in the areas of undergraduate interdisciplinary research and interaction. COSAM is such a diverse college and has very bright people who challenged my way of thinking and transformed my direction as a student. I don’t think I would have gone to graduate school if I had not had such influential mentors in the Auburn geography program.

Sills with sonWhat talents and/or qualities do you possess that make you a valuable member of the Dean’s Leadership Council?

I feel I bring a real-world expectation level to the group considering I am still at the foundation level of my career. With today’s rapid technological advancements changing how people work, it is good to have a perspective brought to the Leadership Council that causes us to consider how students are being taught and what is coming “down the pike,” so to speak. I want Auburn and COSAM to continue to produce the highest quality students who can contribute to the workforce as soon as they enter. Auburn University and COSAM do a great job in this pursuit, and I am glad to contribute where I can.   

Of what in your career, thus far, are you most proud?

I am most proud of being able to deliver cutting edge technologies that change the way people approach their work and make lives easier. I am also proud to say the geospatial technologies field I work in is a growth area and will create many jobs in the future that Auburn graduates can fill.

Sills familyIs there a particular area of COSAM that holds significant interest for you? If so, what is it and why?

The geography program is of significant interest to me. When I was in the program less than 10 years ago, I believe we only had around 15 to 20 declared majors. In the short time since my graduation, geography has added a graduate program and continues to grow. Geography is a core science that bridges many gaps and opens up many opportunities for collaboration, which I experienced firsthand at Auburn. I feel the technology of Geographical Information Systems (GIS), which is taught in the Geography Department, is a particular area that helps spur collaboration and will continue to cause growth in the Geography Department for many years to come. I plan to support the effort in any way possible.