Diaz tabbed as CIO for research unit

The Homeland Security Department has named Deborah Diaz as chief information officer for its research arm, the Science and Technology Directorate.

Diaz, a well-known information technology expert, has been working in DHS' main CIO division for a year helping develop Web sites. She will be joining a directorate that has the money and mandate to develop cutting-edge technologies to fight terrorism.

Diaz helped launch the General Services Administration's FirstGov Web portal in 2000 and was deputy associate administrator for the Office of FirstGov. She subsequently redesigned the site and upgraded its technology so users would more easily find information they needed.

She also played a key role in creating GSA's Office of Citizen Services and Communications, developed an e-government shared services solutions model for federal and state agencies and piloted an e-mail routing system for DHS.

On Sept. 11, 2001, Diaz was evacuated from her office near the White House after terrorists attacked the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon near Washington, D.C. But she did not sit at home; she put together a telecommuting workforce and kept government Web sites operating round-the-clock, providing updates and information for federal workers.

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