New governor sets up IT task force

A day after her swearing-in ceremony, Delaware Gov. Ruth Ann Minner created a task force Jan. 4 to study how the state manages its information technology.

She appointed state Treasurer Jack Markell, a former Nextel Communications Inc. executive, to head the eight-member task force, which is expected to report findings by June 1.

"There's a general sense that we're not managing technology projects as well as we could," said Gregory Patterson, the governor's communications director. "Part of it is the technical expertise on part of the personnel. Part of it is...we don't have it nailed down well as to who takes the lead."

Among other things, Markell will be charged with examining the structure and mission of the state Office of Information Services and how the state attracts and retains qualified IT personnel.

Patterson said OIS should be the lead technology agency, "but for various reasons they have not fulfilled that role as well as we would have liked."

During the campaign, Minner talked about using the Internet and technology to deliver services better, Patterson said. But before e-government services can be addressed, the state needs to look at how to better manage the software and hardware necessary to facilitate e-government, he said.

Other members of the task force include:

    * Michael Ginzberg, dean of the College of Business and Economics at the University of Delaware.

    * Tony Goland, senior partner at the consulting firm McKinsey & Company Inc.

    * Justin Kershaw, chief information officer at manufacturer W.L. Gore & Associates Inc.

    * Richard Eakle, math and electronics instructor in the Engineering Technology Department of Delaware Tech's Georgetown campus.

    * Elayne Starkey, chief technology officer for the Delaware Department of Public Safety.

    * A member from the state House of Representatives to be determined.

    * A member from the state Senate to be determined.

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