The rise of technologists continues as Tasmania appoints a whole-of-government CIO

By Stephen Easton

August 10, 2017

The Tasmanian Treasury’s former director of IT has scored a promotion as the state government’s first chief information officer, as part of a wider refresh of administrative arrangements that aims to strengthen the state government’s use of IT, cyber security and information management.

Glenn Lewis will take charge of the Office of eGovernment in the Department of Premier and Cabinet, an existing administrative unit that is responsible for the whole of government ICT Strategy and works directly for the government’s ICT policy board, chaired by DPAC secretary Greg Johannes.

The TGCIO is a more senior position on the public service scale than the previous head of the office, the director of eGovernment, and the decision to appoint a whole-of-government CIO fits with a trend of governments giving more administrative power to technologists.

Johannes said the state service was trying to “energise its approach to ICT, information management and cyber security” and the appointment is part of that push.

“Working with and across all Tasmanian Government agencies, Dr Lewis’ remit is to lead the collaborative development of a strategic vision that will drive the implementation of simpler, more secure and streamlined services that respond and adapt to the needs and expectations of both government and citizens,” he told The Mandarin

“A critical part of Dr Lewis’ position as Tasmanian Government CIO is to build trusted and productive relationships, not just within government, but across industry and business communities: locally, nationally and internationally.

“To remain at the forefront of public service delivery, Tasmania must ensure its technologies are agile enough to respond to the unpredictable nature of the ICT industry and keep up with the ever-changing needs of the community.”

Johannes described Lewis as “the new champion of ICT across the Tasmanian Government” and said he would bring strong analytical and strategic leadership skills to the role as well as strong experience and “outstanding” qualifications in both ICT and digital information management.

Lewis has held senior management positions in the state’s Department of Health and Human Services and Forestry Tasmania, as well as software architecture, design and development roles in the private sector, and academic roles at the University of Tasmania.

The eGovernment team is reportedly working on a new government ICT strategy, given the current plan will be six years old this December.

Tasmanian mandarins have also been hunting around for their first whole of government chief information security officer this year and the peak cyber security position, which will report to the CIO, has been re-advertised several times, demonstrating the limited pool of suitable candidates for roles as senior public sector IT executives.

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