Sallie Wright, the chief information officer for Fulton County, Georgia, resigned from that position Aug. 3, ending a three-year run.
Wright stepped down to “pursue other opportunities in her field,” according to a county press release.
“I want to thank Sallie for her service and her leadership during a time of major transition in our digital transformation,” Fulton County Manager Dick Anderson said in the release. “Technology is a critical component touching everything from internal systems for a complex Justice and Courts operation to customer facing systems for water treatment infrastructure and voter registration and elections.”
With a population of just over 1 million and 90 percent of the city of Atlanta, Fulton is Georgia’s largest county and economic hub. Wright was brought on in 2015 in the wake of a damning auditor’s report that found the county’s Department of Information Technology had wasted millions of dollars on contracts. Her predecessor, Maurice Ficklin, was fired in November 2014 and later sued the county , claiming he was the target of whistleblower retaliation. The case was dismissed in early 2017.
In 2016, Wright launched a $22 million, five-year process to update the county’s IT infrastructure, including upgrades aimed at cybersecurity and disaster recovery, as well as making it easier for residents to access county services digitally. The goal, county officials said at the time, was to reduce the frequency at which residents actually have to visit county agencies in person to get their questions answered.
“It’s really important to meet the needs of a changing public,” Wright told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution then.
Wright’s work for the county has earned her some praise — she’s a finalist for a Georgia CIO of the Year award to be presented in October.
Among Wright’s other actions were the creation of an IT “Governance Council” to oversee tech priorities at county agencies, and digitizing the property-tax process, the county judicial system and internal IT support for the county government’s roughly 5,000 employees.
Wright could not be reached for comment. Sharon Whitmore, the county’s chief financial officer, will oversee the IT department while a replacement for Wright is recruited.