National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency

The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) is a combat support agency under the United States Department of Defense and a member of the United States Intelligence Community,[9] with the primary mission of collecting, analyzing, and distributing geospatial intelligence (GEOINT) in support of national security. NGA was known as the National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA) from 1996 to 2003.

National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
Seal of the U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
Flag of the U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency

NGA Campus East, headquarters of the agency; the building features trapezoidal windows, color-coded interior sections, and is bisected by an atrium that is large enough to hold the Statue of Liberty[1][2][3]
Agency overview
FormedOctober 1, 1996 (1996-10-01) (as the National Imagery and Mapping Agency)
Preceding agency
  • National Imagery and Mapping Agency (NIMA)
JurisdictionU.S. Department of Defense
HeadquartersFort Belvoir, Virginia, U.S.[2]
38.7532°N 77.1969°W / 38.7532; -77.1969
Motto"Know the Earth... Show the Way... Understand the World"
EmployeesAbout 14,500[4]
Annual budgetClassified (at least $4.9 billion, as of 2013)[5]
Agency executives
Parent agencyDepartment of Defense

NGA headquarters, also known as NGA Campus East or NCE, is located at Fort Belvoir North Area in Springfield, Virginia. The agency also operates major facilities in the St. Louis, Missouri area (referred to as NGA Campus West or NCW), as well as support and liaison offices worldwide. The NGA headquarters, at 2.3 million square feet (214,000 m2), is the third-largest government building in the Washington metropolitan area after The Pentagon and the Ronald Reagan Building.[10]

In addition to using GEOINT for U.S. military and intelligence efforts, NGA provides assistance during natural and man-made disasters, aids in security planning for major events such as the Olympic Games,[11] and gathers data on climate change.[12]

On February 22, 2010, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates announced that Letitia Long would become director later that year, becoming the first woman to head one of the Intelligence Community component agencies. Long was at the time deputy director of the DIA.[13][14]

In September 2018, NGA researchers released a high resolution terrain map[15] (detail down to the size of a car, and less in some areas) of Antarctica, named the "Reference Elevation Model of Antarctica" (REMA).[16]