Center for Digital Government


Government IT pioneer, former Ford executive and first female Department of Defense CIO to help state and local government leaders incorporate new technologies

Teri Takai, former CIO of the State of California and the State of Michigan, will join the Center for Digital Government as a senior advisor to state and local governments nationwide.

Sacramento, Calif. – April 18, 2016 – The Center for Digital Government (CDG) is thrilled to announce that Teri Takai will join the organization as a senior advisor. Takai’s unique, robust combination of experience at Ford Motor Company, the states of Michigan and California and the Department of Defense make her an ideal addition to CDG.

Takai’s role at CDG will be to advise all 50 state governments in their use of technology to better serve citizens through research, analysis, surveys and speaking roles. Her first speaking engagement with CDG will be at the New York IT Leadership Academy April 20-21 in Albany.

“Teri has been a breakthrough female leader in government and private-sector IT,” said Cathilea Robinett, CDG’s president. “Her vast experience and knowledge will be a huge asset to the Center for Digital Government as we continue our efforts to provide public and private-sector leaders with decision support, knowledge and opportunities to help them effectively incorporate new technologies in the 21st century. There is no one person better qualified to help state and local governments make the transition to digital, create efficiencies and provide the high-level services citizens expect today.”

Takai worked for Ford Motor Company for 30 years in strategic planning and global application development. Soon after, she moved to the public sector, first as CIO of the State of Michigan, then as CIO of the State of California. In California, Takai was responsible for advising California’s governor on the strategic management and direction of information technology during the state’s modernization project. She also formed the state’s Project Management and Policy Office, established a strategic IT plan for the state, and passed the governor’s IT reorganization proposal. Takai also managed more than 130 CIOs and 10,000 IT employees across the state’s agencies, departments, boards, commissions and offices.

As the first female CIO at the Department of Defense, Takai was the principal IT advisor to the Secretary of Defense, oversaw a major infrastructure consolidation and streamlining effort and developed the cyber security workforce strategy and the electromagnetic spectrum strategy. She is also credited with replacing the DoD’s longstanding information assurance process with the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s holistic “built-in, not bolt-on” risk-focused security approach.

Takai most recently served as CIO of Meridian Health Plan. She presently serves on the board of FirstNet – the national public safety broadband effort.

“I am excited to be working with the Center for Digital Government in helping state and local government further their agendas through a strong technology platform,” said Takai. “In our changing world – from cybersecurity to the Internet of Things to the continued need to reach our citizens – the role of technology is vital to government, education and health care. I look forward to helping CDG support state and local government in their continued efforts to improve the lives of citizens.”

Takai has won numerous awards, including Governing magazine’s Public Official of the Year; CIO magazine’s CIO Hall of Fame; Government Technology magazine’s Top 25 Doers, Dreamers & Drivers; the Women in Defense Excellence in Leadership Award; and the Department of Defense Medal for Distinguished Public Service. In 2013, Takai was recognized as one of InformationWeek‘s most influential government CIOs.


About the Center for Digital Government |
The Center for Digital Government (CDG) is a national research and advisory institute on information technology policies and best practices in state and local government. CDG is a division of e.Republic, the nation’s only media and research company focused exclusively on state and local government and education.

Media Contact:
Margaret Mohr | Chief Marketing Officer | 916‐932‐1364