IRS picks CIO from industry

The Internal Revenue Service has turned to industry to find its deputy commissioner for business modernization and chief information officer — a new post at the tax agency.

John Reece, a former vice president for information technology at Time Warner Inc., is expected to join the IRS later this month to help the agency develop innovative electronic government services.

"John Reece's private-sector experience with integrating the business and technology needs of different business units is exactly what IRS needs now," IRS commissioner Charles Rossotti said.

Reece will serve as deputy commissioner in a newly created position that combines oversight of business modernization and the CIO office. A deputy will be appointed to serve as chief of information systems, an IRS spokesman said Friday.

Reece's appointment was announced as the IRS is embarking on the next phase of its $15 billion modernization program with the goal of delivering e-services to every taxpayer by the end of the decade.

"The ability to modernize our business practices is dependent on the success of our technology modernization, and John Reece has a stellar success record in that area," Rossotti said.

Reece has considerable business experience in the IT world. At Time Warner, he led efforts to set up global messaging, a shared intranet and information security. He has also worked in management consulting for more than a decade as a managing partner at Booz-Allen & Hamilton Inc.'s IT practice in the Midwest.

Currently, he is CEO and chairman of John C. Reece and Associates, a South Carolina-based consulting firm specializing in Internet and telecommunications ventures.

The IRS also announced the appointment of W. Todd Grams as chief financial officer. Grams was a longtime executive at the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Office of Management and Budget. His duties will include overseeing the agency's $8.8 billion annual budget.

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