A little federal experience and a career in the U.S. Navy have paid great dividends for Tony Encinias. The former naval officer and U.S. Department of Defense technologist came to Pennsylvania in 2008 as chief technology officer, establishing the state as a leader in cybersecurity.
Appointed CIO in December 2012, Encinias spent the last year on a number of projects, most notably automating the creation of user accounts for new hires. Now when someone joins a state agency, instead of waiting for accounts to be authorized and created, one account for email and other systems is enabled with all the permissions set and ready for that person’s first day in the office.
Encinias isn’t resting on his laurels, however. He revealed that 2014 has a number of projects in the pipeline, including consolidating seven data centers into one management services contract. Pennsylvania state agencies are moving to a compute on-demand model, where virtual storage will be purchased as needed. In addition, the state will upgrade to Microsoft Exchange 2013. That promises to be no small feat — Pennsylvania has 90,000 users and the change needs to be as seamless as possible.
From a leadership perspective, Pennsylvania appears to have the right man at the helm to tackle those challenges. Encinias values his military leadership style, but has modified it to a degree to get the best out of those working under him and establish an efficient operation.
“The basic leadership foundation remains the same,” Encinias said. “Dedication to the job, treating your people right and making sure the end customer — in this case, the citizens of Pennsylvania — get the services they deserve.”
Brian Heaton was a writer for Government Technology magazine from 2011 to mid-2015.