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Nevada’s New Chief Data Officer Is Veteran of State IT

Jason Benshoof, the former chief IT manager of the Client Services Unit in the Nevada Office of the CIO, will lead the state’s data governance efforts as CDO. A longtime Nevada executive, he will also develop and implement a statewide data plan.

Nevada state Capitol building.
Jason Benshoof, a longtime state executive who was most recently a chief IT manager, has been named Nevada’s chief data officer.

Elevated to state CDO in February, Benshoof brings more than 25 years of IT experience to the role, having held positions across the private sector, academia, health care, and state, local and tribal governments.

As CDO, he will be responsible for overseeing the development of data governance and strategy, and using data to inform policymaking. The CDO role is housed within the Office of the CIO (OCIO), led by CIO Timothy Galluzi. Benshoof has been tapped to help the state better manage and utilize its data, which has been identified as a priority for state IT leadership.

Specifically, Galluzi told Government Technology in February that as the state explores emerging technology like artificial intelligence, governance is needed to ensure the technology is adopted and governed with security in mind to protect what he referred to as the state’s “greatest asset.”

“That’s the data that Nevadans have entrusted us with,” Galluzi said then. A spokesperson for the OCIO was not immediately available for comment on Benshoof’s appointment.

A state job posting in November for the CDO position indicated responsibilities will include developing and implementing a “comprehensive data strategy” that aligns with state goals and objectives; establishing data governance and management policies, standards, and procedures; and establishing data analytics initiatives and security policies. The CDO will also lead the Enterprise Data Advisory Board; promote data transparency “through data accessibility to the public via various channels”; and develop a statewide data plan.

Benshoof is not new to the OCIO. Prior to being named CDO, he had served as the chief IT manager of the OCIO’s Client Services Unit since 2021. Before that, he served as the IT manager for the Open Systems group within the Computing Services Unit of the OCIO. His time at the state of Nevada dates to August 2009 according to LinkedIn.

Prior to joining enterprise IT services in 2020, Benshoof worked in the Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, where he went upon first joining the state. By 2015, he had been hired to lead the Division of Child and Family Services’ Information Services team within the department.

His other areas of IT experience, per LinkedIn, include time at the Alaska Department of Fish and Game and the Washoe Native Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program.