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State IT leaders make Government Technology's top-25 list

Wisconsin has landed two IT movers and shakers to Government Technology magazine's Top 25 list of Doers, Dreamers and Drivers.

State CIO Matt Miszewski and state Senator Ted Kanavas, a Republican from Brookfield, recently were named to the list for their work in trying to strengthen and streamline the state's IT infrastructure. Both men were featured panelists at WTN's Fusion 2005 conference, held at Madison's Fluno Center last week.

Kanavas spent 12 years in the software industry before being elected to the state Senate in 2001. He co-founded Premier Software Technologies, a provider of middleware for several large IT companies. "Wisconsin is spending hundreds of millions of dollars on IT, and we have to know where everything is and what we have on hand," Kanavas told Government Technology. "Streamlining our IT will put us on a path to fiscal sanity."

"Government's biggest challenge is the idea that the state cannot continue down the bureaucratic pathway, he said. "It must end the mindset that government is just government and cannot be run like a business. Government needs to get away from the idea that all state agencies and entities are separate when it comes to IT."

Miszewski was named to the list for his work in making local governments partners with the state in major IT projects in an "extended enterprise" approach to managing the state's tremendous load of information.
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According to Government Technology, Miszewski coordinated efforts to reduce IT-related spending across state agencies by $40 million for the 2003-2005 biennium. As division administrator for the Wisconsin Division of Enterprise Technology, he also was responsible for saving another $30 million a year at state and local governmental levels.

"In the private sector, the bottom line is well-defined and easy to articulate -- profit," Miszewski told the magazine. "The bottom line for us is simply different, harder to define, difficult to measure but far more compelling."

He said the public-sector bottom line is about working toward stronger families, healthy kids, great schools, better health care, a better economy and a sustainable fiscal picture for state government.

"Waking up every morning and understanding that the trials and tribulations of the day are all aimed at accomplishing that bottom line makes the work not only enjoyable but energizing."

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