2019 StateScoop 50 Awards recognize top state IT leaders and projects

The awards, in their sixth year, recognize winners from more than a dozen states, for excellence in technology and cybersecurity.

Scoop News Group announced on Sunday the winners of the 2019 StateScoop 50 Awards in National Harbor, Maryland, to kick off the National Association of State Chief Information Officers’ midyear conference.

Presented for their sixth year, the StateScoop 50 awards honor the projects and people driving state government technology and cybersecurity.

In January, members of the state and local IT community nominated thousands of leaders and projects for the awards. StateScoop narrowed the list to 180 of those who received the most nominations and readers cast more than 2 million votes nationally between March and April to select the final 50 winners.

Winners were honored Sunday at a reception in National Harbor, sponsored by Salesforce and McAfee.


“As we look across the entire government landscape at Scoop News Group, we know that community is what drives true change in government,” said Goldy Kamali, founder and CEO of Scoop News Group, StateScoop’s parent company. “We are honored to celebrate the brightest leaders from government and the tech industry for the sixth StateScoop 50 Awards.”

“StateScoop is excited to recognize the most inspiring and dynamic leaders across the state government community,” said Jake Williams, StateScoop’s associate publisher and director of strategic initiatives. “The team and I are so proud to be a part of this industry and to celebrate these individuals and projects.”

The winners:

GoldenGov: State Executive of the Year

  • Eric Boyette, State of North Carolina
  • David Cagigal, State of Wisconsin
  • James Collins, State of Delaware
  • Gov. Larry Hogan, Jr., State of Maryland
  • Yessica Jones, State of Arkansas
  • Jim Purcell, State of Alabama
  • Calvin Rhodes, State of Georgia
  • Angelo Riddick, U.S. Virgin Islands

State Leadership of the Year

  • Christie Burris, State of North Carolina
  • Dan Donnelly, State of New York
  • Dayne Freeman, State of Maryland
  • Mike Hussey, State of Utah
  • Susan Miller, State of Georgia
  • Debbie Price, State of Illinois
  • Pete Tenebruso, State of New Jersey
  • Robert Thompson, State of Florida

Industry Leadership of the Year

  • Jennifer Axt, Tanium
  • Michael Daniels, Salesforce
  • Chris Dilley, ServiceNow
  • Deborah Giles, Center for Technology
  • Ken Kartsen, McAfee
  • Josh Morgan, SAS
  • Herb Thompson, VMware

State Up & Comer of the Year

  • Easha Canada, State of Connecticut
  • Carder Hawkins, State of Arkansas
  • William Hensel, State of New York
  • Alexandra Ibragic, State of Indiana
  • Nina Ligget, District of Columbia
  • Connor Norwood, State of Indiana
  • Christopher Paez, State of Maryland
  • Beth Pruitt, State of Illinois
  • Ervan Rodgers, State of Ohio

State Cybersecurity Leader of the Year

  • Ryan Allen, State of Alabama
  • Suneel Cherukuri, District of Columbia
  • John Evans, State of Maryland
  • Hemant Jain, State of Indiana
  • Mohamed Malki, State of Colorado
  • Deborah Snyder, State of New York
  • Thomas Vaughn, State of Florida

State IT Innovation of the Year

  • Business Startup Wizard, State of West Virginia
  • iKan, State of Kansas
  • INConnect, State of Indiana
  • Maryland Opportunity Zone Information Exchange, State of Maryland
  • MI Bridges, State of Michigan
  • MyDMV, State of Arkansas
  • NC360, State of North Carolina
  • Nebraska Department of Revenue Tax Payment Plan, State of Nebraska
  • Smart Inspection Initiative, State of New Jersey
  • Unified Communications and Collaboration, State of Illinois
  • West Virginia Insurance Verification Program, State of West Virginia
Jake Williams

Written by Jake Williams

Jake Williams is the vice president of content and community for StateScoop and EdScoop. He's spent nearly a decade in the government IT market, covering the ins and outs of state and local government, as well as higher education. He started his journalism career in his native Pennsylvania and has also worked as a reporter for Campaigns & Elections magazine.

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