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Thursday, March 17, 2011
Abercrombie to open new State Information Technology Department with donation from Billionaire
By News Release @ 10:28 AM :: 5673 Views :: Energy, Environment

Governor Abercrombie Launches Technology Transformation Initiative

Honolulu – Governor Neil Abercrombie today announced a major initiative to modernize the State’s technology system that will make government more efficient, improve services for the people of Hawai‘i and save taxpayers millions of dollars.

“One of the biggest factors hampering government and costing taxpayers in time and money is the State’s outdated information technology,” Governor Abercrombie said. “Basic operations of government are stymied by an information management system that hasn’t been upgraded in decades. With this major initiative, we will transform our government and bring us to where we need to be in the 21st century.”

Governor Abercrombie is partnering with the Hawai‘i Community Foundation (HCF) to help establish a new Office of Information Management and Technology to be led by the State’s first Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the executive branch.  The CIO will lead and develop a State-wide information management and technology plan.

The new office will modernize the State’s technology system, provide greater accountability for data and spending, enhance security and backup measures and reduce energy usage.  The public will benefit through a broad range of improved services, from filing State taxes to applying for licenses and permits.

“One of my top priorities is to make government more efficient and responsive to Hawai‘i’s residents – not just for today but for our future,” Governor Abercrombie said. “When it comes to information technology, we spend most of our time and money on maintenance and short-term solutions.  This effort will create an environment that gives us the freedom to focus on our most pressing needs while innovating for the future.”

The CIO, who will report to the governor, will work collaboratively with all state departments and agencies to oversee information technology spending and modernization efforts. 

HCF is providing a $3 million grant for this new initiative from the Omidyar Ohana Fund, a donor advised fund established through the support of Pierre and Pam Omidyar.  The grant is in part conditioned upon monies from Senate Bill 1287/House Bill 1060, currently being considered by legislators, as well as future legislation which together will provide the majority of the funding for the transformation effort.

The concept of creating a separate office of technology was identified in Act 200, passed by the State legislature in 2010.  While the Act mandated creation of such an office, it did not identify a funding source to support it.

“The Hawai‘i Community Foundation is dedicated to supporting efforts within the State – or by the State – to improve quality of life in the Islands,” said Kelvin Taketa, president and CEO of the Hawai‘i Community Foundation.  “In evaluating this opportunity, Hawai‘i Community Foundation’s Board agreed that this gift will ultimately have a positive impact on every member of our community, for many years to come. We are rarely presented with opportunities of this magnitude and we’re honored to play a small part in launching the initiative.”

The State is seeking qualified candidates to be considered for the CIO role, as well as additional OIMT staff positions.  The CIO job description is available now on RCUH’s Careers website at  Look for additional OIMT positions to appear on the RCUH Careers website in the coming weeks.For more information about the Office of Information Management and Technology, visit and for more details on this announcement visit the online press kit in the “News” section of the website.


About Hawai`i Community Foundation

With more than 90 years of community service, the Hawai`i Community Foundation has become the leading philanthropic institution in the state.  With a presence stretching across all the islands and a reach covering a broad array of fields, the Foundation works with individuals, families, foundations, businesses and organizations to transform lives and improve our communities.  Last year, the Foundation provided more than $38 million to benefit the community on behalf of its clients, donors and funds.

(CIO funded by possible conflict of interest there, eh?)



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