Techwire Celebrates Two-Year Anniversary

Two years ago this week Techwire was launched after I decided to leave my position as director of communications at the California Technology Agency to create a publication that covered the annual $5 billion industry – the projects, policies and people – that are working to modernize California’s digital infrastructure.

With the seventh issue of our quarterly magazine out this fall, Techwire has gained the attention and support of a growing audience in California. Our list of professional writers and contributors continues to expand, and with two former public officials now on board, readers will find even more in-depth technology-related policy analysis and commentary.

We are excited to have former FCC and CPUC Commissioner Rachelle Chong and former Assemblyman Lloyd Levine as regular contributors. Rachelle is a nationally known expert on telecommunications, broadband, wireless communications and digital literacy. Lloyd served as Chair of the Assembly Committee on Utilities and Commerce. He has also authored major technology-related bills, including the Digital Infrastructure and Video Competition Act. Both contributors will help lend depth as they cover and comment on current policy issues and legislation. The summer issue also features an article by Matt Williams, former online editor of Government Technology, the respected, national magazine covering technology in state and local government. We have been fortunate to share content with the well-known publication, with Techwire articles regularly reaching a national audience.

In addition to publishing the magazine and weekly stories posted online, we have been busy interviewing some of California’s top leaders for our video interview series that runs statewide every week on the California Channel.  Earlier this year, Techwire Host and former television journalist Michelle Kennedy interviewed State Controller John Chiang about a new state technology procurement task force that he and the governor created.  More recently, Techwire Host and intellectual property attorney Christina Gagnier interviewed Department of Technology Chief Deputy Director Anna Brannen about her long tenure working in IT for the State of California. In fact, since Christina joined us, she has interviewed more than 50 state and local public officials, CIOs and technology industry experts.  Thank you to the California Channel for airing Techwire programming.

In May, we held our first event, a gathering of more than 100 public and private sector technology professionals to watch Department of Health Care Services CIO Chris Cruz and his executive team unveil their enterprise architecture plan. With an hour-long presentation and some audience Q and A, we were given the department’s technology blueprint to make progress on its nearly $1 billion project portfolio and help implement the Affordable Care Act in California.

Based on the excitement and feedback from the first event, we are planning more.  We are calling it Techwire Forum, a venue for CIOs and other technology leaders to talk about their initiatives, with some networking time, coffee and bagels included. The program is video-taped and then posted for anyone to watch.

On July 24, Department of Justice CIO Adrian Farley presented his department’s strategic initiatives. Next Monday, on September 23, we are hosting another forum with Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation Agency CIO Joe Panora and his executive team.

Our focus on a core state IT audience and issues of interest are the engine that keeps the publication running. Even as we expand our content delivery beyond print to video, social media, and in person conferences, this focus will keep readers informed on important issues of the day.

We have come a long way in two short years but none of it would have been possible without the support of our annual sponsors and magazine advertisers. We are fortunate to have some well-known brands behind Techwire, ranging from global system integrators and talented local consulting firms, to major broadband providers, Silicon Valley’s oldest company and the world’s most popular software maker. Thank you to our sponsors: Accenture, AT&T, ASG, California Emerging Technology Fund, CGI, Comcast, Delegata, Deloitte, EMC, ENS, Inc., FireEye, Graviton, Highlands Consulting, HP, Kiefer Consulting, Microsoft, M Corp, McAfee, MetaVista Consulting, Trend Micro, Trinity Technology Group, SAS Institute, Inc., Simas and Associates and Symsoft Solutions.

So where do we go from here? Now that we are established, we need to improve and mature, and keep up the momentum. Although it would be a mistake to not closely observe how the publishing industry continues to rapidly change, and despite the Internet and social media, I think there is still a market for traditional information gathering, playing by the rules and getting our facts straight.

Having a well-defined community of interest gives us a chance to thrive while longevity will come with sticking to our core values and paying attention to the stories that keep our audience well-informed.

Thank you for reading!


Bill Maile was editor of Techwire from 2011 to 2016.