Maryland IT Undergoing Changing of the Guard

Three key IT leaders have all left the state to pursue other opportunities.

by / January 26, 2015

Maryland’s IT organization saw an exodus of key IT leaders over the last month, as pro-technology Democratic Gov. Martin O’Malley departed and incoming Republican Gov. Lawrence Hogan took office. 

Chief Innovation Officer Mike Powell, Chief Information Officer and Secretary for the Department of Information Technology Isabel FitzGerald, and Director of Cybersecurity Elliot Schlanger have all left the state to pursue other opportunities. 

Powell recently accepted a position with a small consulting company in Baltimore that specializes in change management and performance measurement. Powell said he was simply ready to move on after reaching a number of IT goals in the state. 

“I came to Maryland IT two and a half years ago with the expectation of getting some projects across the finish line,” Powell said. “When Gov. O’Malley came into office, the state had no IT department. We’ve come a long way from that to having a pretty robust organization today. We’ve built some great things, and I think it’s a good time for someone else to take it to the next level.”

Powell said several key IT projects are now mature enough for the new administration to take full advantage of them, including the Chesapeake Regional Information System for our Patients (CRISP), Maryland’s statewide health information exchange, and the state’s award-winning open data portal. 

FitzGerald, who has served as CIO and secretary for the Department of Information Technology since August 2013, when Schlanger moved out of that role and into the newly created position of director of cybersecurity for the state, declined to comment on her departure. Schlanger, meanwhile, appears to have taken a position at Metrix Technology Engineering.

Thus far, Hogan, the founder and president of Hogan Companies, a commercial real estate brokerage firm, has not emphasized technology in his plans for the state. He took leave of his business in 2003 to serve as secretary of appointments in Gov. Bob Ehrlich's administration. In 2011, Hogan founded the grass-roots organization Change Maryland. In 2014, he announced his candidacy for governor and won the race.

Staff writer Colin Wood contributed to this story.

Justine Brown Contributing Writer