Kevin Cornish

There’s a new tech leader at California’s health insurance marketplace.

Kevin Cornish is the new chief information officer at Covered California, the agency announced Monday. He replaces Karen Ruiz, its CIO of seven years, who is retiring. Cornish, who was previously chief technology officer for the Office of the President at the University of California, will be charged with the design, development and execution of Covered California’s IT strategy. He’ll also be called on to deliver “executive leadership over complex enterprise-wide business information technology solutions within a consumer-facing sales environment,” the agency said in a news release. The new CIO will also represent the agency’s IT initiatives with stakeholders including state and federal government agencies, vendors, health insurance companies and others. 

Cornish will start Aug. 1, and his salary will be $260,000 per year. Ruiz's last day will be July 31.

“Kevin has spent more than three decades helping organizations build and expand their information technology infrastructure,” Covered California Executive Director Peter V. Lee said in a statement about Cornish, who has 31 years’ experience in the field, including nearly three as CTO at the Office of the President. “His knowledge, experience and passion will serve us well as Covered California continues its efforts to use technology to make health care work better for consumers and to support our team in serving millions of Californians.”

At the Office of the President, where he was named CTO in August 2017, Cornish led “cloud transformation, technology convergence and Oracle Financials Cloud implementations” for the university and for the state’s fourth-largest health-care delivery system, he said in his LinkedIn profile. Before that, Cornish was CIO for nearly four years at the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, where he helped transform IT into a “strategic function supporting disruptive innovation.” And before UC Berkeley, he was vice president for IT infrastructure at Kaiser Permanente IT, where he led multi-year, multibillion-dollar work to “remediate and transform” the technology foundation for the health-care provider.

Cornish, who worked for private software companies until 2010, the agency said, has a bachelor’s degree in Human Information Processing from the University of California, San Diego.