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New Jersey Appoints New Chief Innovation Officer

The Innovation Office’s own Dave Cole now steps up to lead it, after former Chief Innovation Officer Beth Noveck departed to become the state’s chief AI strategist.

Dave Cole
Photo Credit: state of New Jersey
Dave Cole is New Jersey’s next chief innovation officer, Gov. Phil Murphy has announced.

Cole replaces Beth Noveck, who recently left the role to become the state’s first chief AI strategist. Cole has served in the office since 2020. While there he helped with the state’s response to the pandemic, including acting as technology co-lead for its COVID-19 vaccination program. Cole also co-launched and led a resident experience initiative, in which he worked with state agencies to create and adopt digital services needed for new policies and programs.

“Dave’s commitment to improving the lives of New Jerseyans can only be surpassed by the results he’s delivered during his years helping lead the Office of Innovation — the office’s future and mission is in capable and expert hands,” Noveck said in a statement.

Before joining New Jersey government, Cole had a mix of private- and public-sector experience, per the state.

That includes serving as vice president of strategy and operations for a technology startup, as well as roles in the federal government. During former President Barack Obama’s first term, Cole was senior adviser to the CIO and deputy director of New Media, and he encouraged agencies to adopt open source technology. Another earlier role saw him as a software engineer at U.S. General Services Administration’s digital consultancy 18F.

“When we deliver government services that are responsive to residents' needs, we restore trust and lift up our communities,” Cole said in a statement. “In addition to our efforts to improve state benefits and services for residents, Gov. Murphy's day-one commitment to establishing New Jersey as the Innovation State has made it possible for us to make it easier than ever to start and operate a local business, enabling economic growth across our state. I am grateful for this opportunity to work with my colleagues across this administration in service of the residents of New Jersey.”