December 17

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As the opioid epidemic sweeps throughout the nation, governments are determining the role they have in effectively addressing this crisis. Increasingly, accurate and timely data across agencies is a critical element in developing approaches, implementing programs and measuring success. Another key aspect is fostering relationships among information technology, health and human services, and other state organizations. This webinar explores the programs, partnerships and data initiatives that have been established to combat the opioid crisis. Join us to hear leaders from Massachusetts, North Dakota and New Jersey share best practices and lessons learned. 


Monica Bharel, MD, MPH

Monica Bharel, MD, MPH

Commissioner Massachusetts Department of Public Health

Appointed by Governor Charlie Baker in 2015, Commissioner Monica Bharel serves as the Commonwealth’s chief physician. She is dedicated to reducing health disparities and developing data-driven, evidence-based solutions for keeping people healthy and is helping lead the state’s aggressive response to the opioid crisis. In 2017, Massachusetts was among few states to see a reduction in opioid overdose deaths, thanks to a variety of new programs and initiatives.
As Commissioner, Dr. Bharel oversees a public health workforce of nearly 3000 and an expansive department addressing issues, from environmental health to injury prevention to infectious diseases. In 2017, Massachusetts was named the healthiest state in the nation by America’s Health Rankings Report.
Dr. Bharel is a board certified internist who has practiced general internal medicine for more than 20 years, and has been recognized for her dedication to underserved and vulnerable populations. Prior to becoming Commissioner, she was Chief Medical Officer of Boston Health Care for the Homeless.
She holds a Master of Public Health degree through the Commonwealth Fund/Harvard University Fellowship and a medical degree from Boston University School of Medicine.

Chris Rein

Chris Rein

CTO, State of New Jersey

Chris Rein is the Chief Technology Officer for the State of New Jersey. In this position, he leads the State’s Office of Information Technology which is a 700-person team charged with operating the technology infrastructure for the Executive Branch - over 50 State departments, agencies, and offices. Mr. Rein was the former Deputy Director of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Communications Integration Cell. In this role, he also served as our State's Deputy CISO (Chief Information Security Officer). His background includes 38 years developing, integrating, and managing software as well as holding leadership roles with large and complex information technology projects. Prior to joining the NJ Office of Homeland Security, Mr. Rein held the position of Vice President and Chief Information Officer for CSI Technology, a New Jersey software development company serving Law Enforcement, Regulatory, and Judiciary markets. He served as the NJ State Police IT Program Manager/CIO, and earlier advanced in technical and management roles over some 20 years at the former Bell Atlantic and its technology subsidiary, Bellcore. Chris received his undergraduate degree in Computer Science from Rutgers University, and earned his Master’s degree in Technology Management from Stevens Institute of Technology. Chris lives in central New Jersey with his family.

Previously, Rein was the deputy director of Homeland Security's cybersecurity and communications integration cell. In this role, he also served as New Jersey's deputy chief information security officer. His background includes 38 years developing, integrating and managing software, as well as holding leadership roles with large and complex information technology projects.

Dorman Bazzell

Dorman Bazzell

Chief Data Officer, State of North Dakota

Dorman is the first Chief Data Officer for the great state of North Dakota. In his role he is responsible for three service deliver pillars: Application Development, all things Data, and Business Intelligence/Analytics/AI. Over the past year he has focused on agile transformation, deploying robotic process automation, AI/ML and low/no code platforms throughout the state as well as consulting to the legislature on such topics as data privacy and ethical use of AI. Prior to his time with the state, Dorman spent 20 years in consulting in data and analytics from business to government. He ran the BI/Big Data practices for several global consulting firms, deploying solutions in defense, retail, telecommunications, energy, manufacturing and health care.

Phil Bertolini

Phil Bertolini — Moderator

Co-executive Director, Center for Digital Government

Phil Bertolini is the Co-executive Director of the Center for Digital Government, a national research and advisory institute on information technology policies and best practices in state and local government. Previously, he served as deputy county executive and CIO for Oakland County, Michigan.

During his 31-year tenure, Phil built a world-class IT organization in the second-largest county in Michigan, just north of Detroit. As Oakland County CIO, he oversaw more than 150 employees serving over 1.2 million residents. In 2005, he was also promoted to deputy county executive, holding dual positions until his retirement.

Phil’s efforts earned the county national attention, winning numerous awards for technology innovation and excellence. He was named one of Governing Magazine’s Public Official of the Year and Government Technology Magazine’s Top 25 Doers, Dreamers & Drivers. He was also honored by the President Obama White House as a Champion of Change for 2012.