50 Most Influential Government CIOs
June 07, 2011 07:00 AM Check out InformationWeek's Government CIO 50, our power list of top government CIOs--ranging from the NSA's technology chief to innovators at the state and city government level. They've got vision, clout, and sometimes, billion-dollar IT budgets. But most of all, these CIOs are known for delivering tangible, measurable results. Here's an inside look at the government technology leaders and their approaches to unique IT leadership challenges.
Roger Baker, CIO, Department of Veterans Affairs
Roger Baker's performance-based approach to IT management is catching on in Washington. The VA's Project Management Accountability System (Baker himself devised it) has saved the agency millions of dollars. Federal CIO Vivek Kundra regularly points to the VA's IT management and funding processes as examples of how technology projects should be managed across government.
The VA's CIO also uses transparency into the operations of his department as a management tool. In February 2010, the VA launched a Web dashboard that provides views into the performance of dozens of its IT projects. And the agency releases cybersecurity statistics monthly, including summaries of data breaches. Not one to shy away from the facts, Baker briefs the media and answers questions in regular conference calls.
The VA's "Blue Button" initiative, developed in collaboration with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, has been lauded as an example of how open government can lead to better public services. Blue Button lets veterans download their personal health records with a simple "download my data" button. Baker's team has also increased use of agile software development.