Emory Miller | Two heads, one vision

The individual who had the biggest impact on the work of government in the last 25 years was Flyzik Forman. Let me explain.

During the late 1980s and '90s, IT leaders were still seeking their place, role and identity in a government business environment where the latest technological offering was driving customer needs and the marketplace.

We were realizing the potential for IT to solve larger organizational and governmental problems ' and at the same time were overwhelmed with its expense and our responsibility to be good stewards of our agencies' growing resources. Then came Executive Order 13011 and ' lo and behold ' we became chief information officers!

Well, that solved our identity crisis, but, 'Now what,' we asked? What was a CIO to do? And more important, now that we had constituted a Federal CIO Council, what was a gaggle of CIOs to do? In walk'Jim Flyzik and Mark Forman. No, not at the same time, but on the same continuum ' sharing a common vision to make this government better for the citizens and businesses of this country.

Jim Flyzik [former CIO at the Treasury Department, now president of the Flyzik Group] began by helping us understand the potential for techno-birds of a feather to collaborate by sharing common interests, issues, problems, ideas and solutions. The group responded and quickly learned that there was great benefit in sharing lessons learned and innovative thought.

Quickly, we realized 'the wisdom was in the room,' and the CIO Council was a collaborative and productive space.

A few years later, Mark Forman [former OMB administrator for e-government and IT, now a principal with KPMG] came on the scene. He walked in the same room with a vision for an electronic government in his hip pocket and a value for what the CIO Council had done and was about to do. E-government initiatives, lines of business and a federal enterprise architecture were birthed, and we were on the way to a resultsfocused government.

What more is there to say but, 'thank you' to two gentlemen who had the vision, courage and conviction to take us to new place of service to our citizens.

Emory Miller is a senior vice president at Robbins-Gioia and former General Services Administration director of professional leadership.


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