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Wallingford, Conn., Appoints New Director of IT

Andrew Winters III is Wallingford's new director of information technology, a position the mayor created to overhaul the systems town employees use to work and residents use to access information.

servers and code
(TNS) — With 30 years of industry experience, Andrew Winters III is taking the lead in modernizing the town's technological infrastructure.

Winters is Wallingford's new director of information technology, a position Mayor Vincent Cervoni created to overhaul the systems town employees use to work and residents use to access information.

Winters, a Wallingford resident, currently works as IT director at Nel Hydrogen, a Technology Drive distributor of hydrogen as a renewable energy source. He has been with the company for 24 years.

The new position has a starting salary of $159,000.

According to Cervoni, Winters was the most qualified candidate of about five applicants who responded to the public posting of the position. Having worked 30 years in the industry, Winters is a certified information security professional.

"He has the experience of handling everything from desktop servers, storage, networking, and building teams both remote as well as on-premises, all aspects of it," said Town Councilor Christopher Regan, who was the council's liaison on the hiring committee. Owner of his own technology firm, Regan Technologies, he said he was impressed by Winters' resume and what he could offer the town.

"It's a breath of fresh air. It's somebody who can set the course for the next two, five, 10 years, as planning out IT, as it evolves," Regan said. "He's certainly knowledgeable about all aspects that I threw at him as well as the other individuals who had met with him. ... The interviews, the conversations, the personality, it seems to all be a mix into somebody who's starting another 10-, 15-year career."

Though other members of the council said they didn't know much about Winters, who assumed the post May 6, they said they were confident in the mayor's choice and were looking forward to working alongside him in the future.

"I think being that as we have virtually no technology infrastructure to start with, I think you need someone that's going to have sort of a good vision of where they want the department to be in say, three or five years," Council Chair Joseph Marrone said. "And so I think if you pick someone with a lot of experience, he's touched a lot of different aspects of the business."

Winters graduated from Plainville High School and received his bachelor's in communications from the University of Hartford. Outside of work, Winters is an independent coach and a group fitness instructor at Big Sky Health and Fitness in Newington, leading spinning and body combat classes since 2005.

One of the pillars of Cervoni's platform when campaigning last year was overhauling the town's technology infrastructure, which was largely neglected under prior Mayor William Dickinson Jr's 40-year tenure. Among the goals is modernizing the systems employees use in Town Hall and streamlining systems for residents, like online bill pay and information lookup.

When he took office in January, Cervoni informed the council that Town Hall had several networks entirely independent from the rest of the town's systems, with some computers only plugged into an outlet with no access to any other network.

"There is such a patchwork of systems throughout Town Hall. The work that's going to have to be done to get several hundred employees connected and working digitally is going to require an in-house director to manage the variety of issues that are going to come up on a daily basis," Cervoni told the council at the time.

To fix the issue, the council approved the use of $39,000 in American Rescue Plan Act funding to undertake a survey of the town's technological systems, giving recommendations and an outline of what needs to be fixed and how to proceed, providing Winters with as roadmap to start making changes.

"He was certainly made exceedingly aware of the technology platform as it currently exists," Cervoni said. "He is aware that we've been working with a consultant to come up with a plan, and he is going to be offered the opportunity to roll out that plan, and certainly he'll be given the opportunity to put his own personal touches on it."

Councilors said that with the deficiency in technology infrastructure, building up to be on-par with surrounding towns will likely take several years.

© 2024 Journal Inquirer, Manchester, Conn. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.