Team – I have decided to resign as GITA Director and start my own consulting companies. I will be working with two, possibly three companies: a management and strategic advisory company called KCG, Inc; a lobbying firm called B2G Solutions; and possibly a political consulting firm. I have very strong partners in each of these endeavors and am very excited about the opportunities.
Working with all of you for these last two years has been a sheer joy. You are true professionals and have all accomplished so much.
To highlight a few our successes:
- One your biggest and most recent successes is the expansion of cell phone service in the remote areas of Cochise County. This area has a high traffic of illegal aliens and it is vital that citizens be able to call for help. While President Obama and the US Congress have requested wireless carriers expand their cover here and elsewhere, it was your “gentle diplomacy” that made it happen for Cochise County.
- One of your first efforts was establishing the Arizona Broadband Advisory Council. This was a partnership of 11 agencies and helped win over $75 million dollars in grants to expand this vital service to Arizona. The NTIA recognized us as one of the best run programs in the country!
- After a half-dozen of years talking about the need to create a State E-Rate office, you made it happen. When this becomes fully operational it will lead to over $40 million in educational grants, vital for our kid’s future.
- According to the Southwestern Regional Coordinator for the Department of Homeland Security, Arizona is now the “national leader” in public safety communications. The other states now look to Arizona as a successful model.
- You conducted the state’s first ever vulnerability scan and have taken other measures to protect the state’s information assets.
- At the request of the Governor’s Office and the Superintendant of Education, you conducted an assessment of the educational data systems and provided recommendations that were highly received. One senior person mentioned tongue and cheek, “this is the first time we’ve met on these issues, have gotten results and not have it end in a yelling match.”
- Two years ago, there was not a single list of all state IT projects. Now we have that list plus a lot more – executive dashboards, oversight metrics, business case requirements and other measures that will lead to better project controls. GITA now takes a proactive role in preventing "concerns" from becoming major issues.
And yes, there are many, many more major accomplishments, not to mention the minor victories!
As a result of all your hard work, one state IT worker with over 20 years of experience told me “it’s great that GITA is finally doing what it was meant to do.” Another follower of state government told me “GITA has done more in the last couple of years than it has ever done.”
I strongly believe that GITA is now one of the most innovative and productive state agencies. While all this may sound like a lot of bragging, and maybe it is, they are facts and I am proud to have been a part of your success.
I truly wish all of you success and do hope we can stay in touch. You can reach me via LinkedIn and Facebook.