NASCIO Honors Three Public Servants with State Technology Innovator Award

The National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO) presented the State Technology Innovator Award to three deserving public servants during the 2019 NASCIO Annual Conference in Nashville. The NASCIO State Technology Innovator Award honors outstanding state government employees who have made contributions to advance state technology policy through the promotion of best practices, adoption of new technologies and advancements in service delivery. Nominations were gathered from NASCIO members as well as non-members and selected by the NASCIO Executive Committee.

The following are the recipients of the 2019 NASCIO State Technology Innovator Award:

Nikhil Deshpande
Chief Digital Officer, State of Georgia

As Chief Digital Officer of Digital Services Georgia at the Georgia Technology Authority, Nikhil Deshpande leads the team responsible for managing, the official online portal to Georgia state government, and Georgia GovHub, the state’s official publishing platform for delivering state-of-the-art, secure, accessible and compliant websites. Nikhil has spearheaded many initiatives including a state website rebranding initiative, ensuring the state’s websites meet the needs of constituents with disabilities and is responsible for Georgia being the first state to use responsive design technology on both its web portal and its enterprise publishing platform.

Tony Powell
Chief Information Officer, Department of Health, State of Florida

As the Florida Department of Health (FDOH) CIO, Tony Powell directs IT operations and modernization efforts across the department’s 400+ locations. Alongside peers from Florida and the greater U.S., Powell sought new ways to deliver consistent access to applications, provide dependable support and services, and ensure continuity of operations no matter the circumstances. Under Powell’s leadership, FDOH has adopted a multi-cloud and hybrid cloud approach for production workloads, non-production workloads and disaster recovery with encryption at rest and transport. The result is the ability to be nimble, adjust during disasters, operate when issues arise during day-to-day operations and provide maximum adaptability to meet all circumstances.

Tere Shade
Business Solutions Manager, State of Texas

Tere Shade is the Business Solutions Manager for the Department of Information Resources (DIR) Shared Technology Services (STS) Program in the State of Texas and oversaw the transformation of the STS program. Under her leadership, STS was able to establish a new service delivery system to support a shift from data center-driven environments to a broad host of managed IT service offerings available to eligible state agencies, city and county governments, higher education institutions and public school districts in the state of Texas. Additionally, she successfully led the September 2018 launch of the Outreach and Growth team, promoting the goal of integrating marketing automation, customer relationship management and IT service management systems. Her efforts have resulted in more than doubling the number of STS customers that now include approximately 150 cities, counties and public school districts in Texas.