Department of Health Care Services CIO and deputy director Chris Cruz has been appointed chief deputy director of operations at the California Department of Technology, the governor’s office announced Friday afternoon.
Cruz becomes CalTech’s No. 2 executive, replacing Ron Hughes, who retired from public service last summer.
Cruz was CIO at the Department of Health Care Services since 2011 and in March was named to Government Technology’s annual Top 25 Doers, Dreamers and Drivers list of change makers in the public sector.
At DHCS, Cruz oversaw a $1 billion project portfolio and some of California’s biggest IT initiatives, including a mission-critical Medicaid Management Information System expansion and upgrade. In recent months, Cruz has spearheaded a cloud readiness assessment of the state’s major health IT systems.
Under Cruz’s leadership, the department enacted a voluntary teleworking and virtual desktops plan for IT workers in order to attract and retain top talent. He also made DHCS one of the first state-level departments to actively encourage bring your own device in the workplace.
Cruz has worked for the state government for more than a decade after beginning his career in the private sector as a project manager and consultant. He was CIO at the California Department of Food and Agriculture (2007-10) and an IT manager at the Department of Health Services (2004-07).
Cruz is an alumnus of California State University, Sacramento, and resides in El Dorado Hills.
This story was originally published by TechWire.