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Texas Names New CIO, Moves Interim to Deputy Role

Both already working for the Texas Department of Information Resources, the state’s new CIO and deputy CIO have close to 30 years combined experience in the public sector and backgrounds in law and business.

Texas lawmakers will face major challenges in funding state priorities next session
Texas named two new state IT leaders today: Amanda Crawford as CIO and John Hoffman as deputy CIO, following the retirement of CIO Todd Kimbriel in May.

Announced in a news release on the state’s website, Crawford’s appointment follows a more than 20-year career working for Texas state departments. Since February 2019 she’s been executive director of the Texas Department of Information Resources, which oversees the state’s data, technology infrastructure and multibillion-dollar cooperative contracts program.

Before leading DIR, Crawford worked her way up the ranks in the state attorney general’s office for almost two decades, first as an attorney in 1999 and then as a public information coordinator, division chief of the open records division, general counsel, deputy attorney general for legal counsel, and most recently as a deputy attorney general for administration. According to her LinkedIn profile, Crawford has a law degree from the University of Houston Law Center and a bachelor’s degree in Spanish from the University of Texas at Austin.

"I am grateful to the board for their continued faith in my leadership and will continue to work with the DIR team to provide Texans with the high standards of innovation and customer service they deserve,” she said in a statement.

Crawford’s second in command, Hoffman, has been the state’s interim CIO since Kimbriel’s retirement in May. He’s had various jobs in both private and public domains of the technology sector over the past 30 years, including 20 years as senior director of various telecommunications companies and more than 10 years at Texas DIR, where he is also the chief technology officer. According to Hoffman’s LinkedIn profile, he has a master's degree in business administration from Southern Methodist University and a bachelor’s in engineering management from the University of Missouri.

Just before he retired six months ago, Kimbriel told Government Technology that the state had made tremendous progress consolidating physical IT infrastructure in recent years, but the economic impact of COVID-19 could lead to hiring freezes and budget restrictions. Texas has also had a rough couple years of ransomware attacks, which prompted DIR to contract with cybersecurity vendor FireEye in September for malware defense.