The state’s first digital transformation officer has accepted a position with the Eagle County, Colo., Department of Public Health.
The Colorado Governor’s Office of Information Technology (OIT) is on the hunt for its next digital transformation officer (DTO) to replace Brandon Williams, who is departing for a new position in local government.
As of early October, Williams will assume new duties as the operations and process improvement manager for the Eagle County Department of Public Health. His own interests in public health and recreation, not to mention family ties to the county, make the move one that he is excited about on both a personal and professional level.
“Sometimes you get lucky where your background just falls into place, and my personal interests are in health and public health,” he said of the change.
Williams has been with the state for several years, but was named the state’s first digital transformation officer in November 2016. Prior to that, he spent four years leading the state's Google Services team. Though he does not describe himself as a traditional technologist, Williams immediately took to reconciling the data the state had digitized and putting it to better use across state platforms as DTO.
“I came to this as liberal arts coming into technology and I think that has been a really cool aspect of it because working with agencies and understanding their challenges from a policy perspective, from a process perspective and then being able to seek technical answers and solutions has been great,” he said.
Though he said he has enjoyed his time with the state, Williams is clearly looking forward to being more directly involved with the community, especially as it relates to public health issues. As both an Ironman competitor and ultrarunner, William said he cares deeply about public health and wellness and where technology folds into the mix.
“The work at the community level, that close to the people and in the place that I care about and still being able to bring that kind of knowledge about Google and transformation, and really be on that kind of bleeding edge where local government is trying to improve ... I think that is super exciting,” Williams explained.
When asked what he was most proud of in his time at OIT, Williams said the attitude shift toward user-focused programs on the part of state agencies was top of mind.
“I’d say by far, the biggest, coolest thing we’ve done is in user experience, bringing on a UX [user experience] manager and being able to up-end the way we’ve done traditional development, where we are getting user experience as being the determining factor in how we choose platforms, how we design; actually creating wireframes and user experience stories when we are looking at how to solve technical challenges with agencies has been incredible,” he said.
Chief Technology Officer David McCurdy said in a statement that Williams’ “has been instrumental in the effort to transform IT in the public sector.”
Williams' last official day with OIT will be Sept. 14, after which he said he will embark on a “several hundred-mile [bike] rides across eastern Colorado” before starting with the county in early October.