Published on April 24, 2024, 9:01 pm

Voting for the 2024 StateScoop 50 Awards is now open, marking an exciting time for the recognition of excellence in the realm of technology and innovation. In recent news, Bill Zielinski is stepping down from his role as Dallas’ chief information officer after serving in the position for nearly four years. During his tenure, he played a pivotal role in managing the city’s response to challenges such as a ransomware attack and the aftermath of millions of electronic police records being deleted by a city IT employee.

Zielinski, who has been at the forefront of leading technological initiatives amidst the backdrop of the COVID-19 pandemic, shared that he is set to transition to the private sector following over three decades of public service. Reflecting on this new opportunity, he expressed gratitude for finding a fitting match at this juncture in his career and life.

As Zielinski bids farewell to his role, Brian Gardner will step in as the interim CIO. Gardner, who currently serves as the city’s chief information security officer, will be entrusted with continuing the strategic direction of Dallas’ information technology landscape.

In light of past challenges faced by the city, including the inadvertent deletion of significant police records and a disruptive ransomware attack compromising sensitive data, Zielinski implemented proactive measures such as providing regular updates to the city council on IT matters. These incidents underscored the importance of enhancing digital safeguards and fortifying cybersecurity protocols across municipal systems.

Despite acknowledging the support received from Dallas’ leadership and expressing satisfaction with his experience within the organization, Zielinski highlighted personal reasons for embracing this new career chapter. His departure marks a transition towards fresh endeavors in private industry while leaving behind a legacy of resilience and dedication to bolstering technological resilience within municipal operations.

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