Supported by NASA's Earth Surface and Interior (ESI) Program, we are producing a global set of Ground Control Points (GCPs) derived from the Ice, Cloud and land Elevation Satellite (ICESat) altimetry data. From February of 2003, to October of 2009, ICESat obtained nearly global measurements of land topography (?? 86?? latitudes) with unprecedented accuracy, sampling the Earth's surface at discrete ???50 m diameter laser footprints spaced 170 m along the altimetry profiles. We apply stringent editing to select the highest quality elevations, and use these GCPs to characterize and quantify spatially varying elevation biases in Digital Elevation Models (DEMs). In this paper, we present an evaluation of the soon to be released Global Multi-resolution Terrain Elevation Data 2010 (GMTED2010). Elevation biases and error statistics have been analyzed as a function of land cover and relief. The GMTED2010 products are a large improvement over previous sources of elevation data at comparable resolutions. RMSEs for all products and terrain conditions are below 7 m and typically are about 4 m. The GMTED2010 products are biased upward with respect to the ICESat GCPs on average by approximately 3 m. ?? 2011 Copyright Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE).