CenITex appoints new CEO


The Victorian Government’s IT shared services agency CenITex appears to have nabbed the Victoria police force’s head of technology to be its new chief executive.

“New CenITex CEO announced — Michael Vanderheide,” wrote Susan Sly, the director of information management & technology at fellow Victorian agency VicRoads, on Twitter yesterday.

Neither CenITex nor Victoria Police have yet responded to calls requesting comment on the matter this morning, but the most high-profile executive of that name in the Victorian Public service is the current chief information officer and executive director of infrastructure at Victoria Police. Vanderheide was appointed to that role in 2009 after a lengthy career helping lead the ACT Government’s own shared services efforts.

At the time Vanderheide joined Victoria Police, the organisation was reeling from the resignation of his predecessor, Valda Berzins, in November 2008. Berzins left Victoria Police under a cloud, with an investigation into its IT department finding 12 months later that it had had a “disregard for proper procurement and contract management”.

Vanderheide outlined his extensive remediation efforts at the organiation in a wide-ranging interview in mid-2010. However, at least one of the major projects which Victoria Police is involved in — the overhaul of its front-line policing system — has been placed on ice under the new Coalition State Government, as Victoria Police seeks to take the problem-plagued overhaul back to basics.

If the information about his appointment as CenITex chief executive is accurate, Vanderheide will replace founding chief executive Peter Blades in the role leading the shared services agency.

Blades left CenITex in March after several years leading the organisation, which was founded in July 2008 from the merger of two existing shared services agencies overseen by the Department of Treasury and Finance.

In an interview with Government Technology Review early this month following his departure, Blades said the agency was “on track” to achieving its vision of being the preferred supplier of IT infrastructure services across the State Government. It is currently focused on rolling government departments and agencies in to use its consolidated and standardised IT infrastructure.

Currently, CenITex is led by board member Jim Monaghan, who has acted in the role since the departure of Blades and until a new chief executive could be found.

Image credit: Jonathan LaRocca, Creative Commons