The Georgia Chapter of Government Management Information Sciences (GA-GMIS) will be the foremost association for connecting public service information technology professionals in Georgia.
The purpose of Georgia GMIS is to provide a forum for the exchange of ideas, information, and techniques to foster enhancements in hardware, software and communications development as they relate to government activities. We will maintain an atmosphere of trust, support and mutual respect among all GMIS members while working to foster an environment of openness and candor in the internal decision-making process.
Expand Georgia GMIS Education and Certification program
- Create list of certifications and identify SMEs to deliver curriculum; preference is to fast track certification between conferences.
- Secure Geek Trak coalition w/ Augusta Tech or other training institutions to offer various locations to attend training.
- Implement GMIS membership education referral program.
- Provide access to professional services through = GA GMIS listserv and other collaboration portals.
Growth and Customer Service:
- Establish committees to better serve the constituents such as Communications, Governance, Membership, and Customer Service
- Amend Bylaws as needed to reflect new direction or goals for the organization.
- Provide monthly virtual training on relevant topics to enhance constituents level of understanding on specifics trending issues.
- GMIS Leadership will attend other state conferences to provide awareness to Georgia GMIS.
With over 30 years of experience in private sector, non-profit and government Information Technology, Steve began his career designing industrial control systems for companies like M&M Mars, Lever Brothers, Conagra Foods and Dixie Crystals Sugar. Steve is the Director of Technology Services for the City of McDonough, Georgia where he was tasked to create the City’s first Technology Services department. During his tenure, he has transformed the City from little more than a consumer grade network forward to an Enterprise system, using best in class technology. He has a proven track record in translating business needs into technology infrastructure that will support the company’s business objectives and to successfully manage all phases of IT projects from needs analysis and requirements definition to vendor selection, implementation, and training.
Steve holds various certifications including CompTia A+/Net+, Office of Homeland Security, Local Government Chief Information Officer (LGCIO) & the nationally recognized Certified Government Chief Information Officer (CGCIO™) from Carl Vision Institute of the University of Georgia October 2019. He previously served as Information Technology Manager for both a regional construction firm and Goodwill of North Georgia. Steve enjoys spending time with his wife of 41 years Linda at their lake home, spoiling his 6 grandchildren, singing with the Oxford College of Emory University Chorale, sport shooting & hopes to actually catch a fish one day.
1st Vice President
Chief Information Officer
City of College Park
Mr. Hicks is the Chief Information Officer at City of College Park since November 2016. His background includes 34 years of progressive technology experience.
Mr. Hicks has spent 30 years in Higher Education as a Technician, Manager, Director, and Chief Information Officer.
Since joining the College Park team, He used his technology operations experience to manage various departments, Communications, and Customer Service new smart meter technology.
His 21st, Century approach to technology has resulted in an exclusive article listed in ED TECH magazine. He is currently the chair of College Park Strategic Planning committee. His innovative approach also includes Enterprise Resource Planning, Smart City initiatives, and establishing a Technology Action Committee for citizen engagement. He completed a leadership program geared toward future local leaders. His additional achievement includes the Local Government Chief Information Officer program (LGCIO) , followed by second tier nationally recognized Certified Government Chief Information Officer (CGCIO™). As the City of College Park move further in to the 21st Century he is preparing technology for the 22nd Century. He obtained a Master Degree from Central Michigan University and a Bachelor Degree from St. Leo University.
2nd Vice President
Chief Information Officer
City of Gainesville
Jonathan Reich brings over 27 years of experience in the field of Information Technology and has a diverse background in both the public and private sectors, setting innovative technology standards and providing visionary leadership for numerous organizations. Jonathan manages a team of professionals committed to delivering a variety of services, including Public Safety applications and technology, Data Center & Infrastructure, Citywide Enterprise Applications, Strategic Planning, Open Data and much more. Under his leadership, the City of Gainesville has implemented a multi-jurisdictional high-speed fiber network and a hyper-converged SDN datacenter, along with updates to policies and procedures to better serve citizens and staff. Jonathan continues to collaborate with governments, nonprofits and other community stakeholders in an effort to bolster citizens’ quality of life through technology. Jonathan has been an active member of the Georgia chapter of GMIS International for the last five years and has completed his Certified Government Chief Information Officer (CGCIO™) via UGA’s Carl Vinson Institute. Jonathan is a long-time Georgia resident and lives in the North Georgia area outside of Atlanta with his family, and hopes to complete the training for his private pilot’s license someday.
3rd Vice President
Chief Information Officer
Henry County Government
Jamie Pownall serves as the Chief Information Officer and Director of Technology Services, and in that role, he manages all operational aspects of Henry County Government’s Information Technology including Security, Strategic Planning, Budgeting, Business Process and Control Management, IT Policy development and management of the Technology Services Department and staff.
Jamie was born in Clayton County and moved to Henry County in 1984 at the age of 8. He graduated from Henry County High School in 1994. During his time in High School, he was a founding member of the Henry Players.
Jamie graduated UGA in 1998 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree and also achieved his Certified Government Chief Information Officer (CGCIO™) from the University of Georgia in 2019. He has been working in the IT field since 1996 and has worked with Henry County in Technology Services since 2007. He was promoted to Director and CIO of Technology Services in 2021.
Jamie and his wife have two girls, one a senior in high school and one who attending UGA. Jamie is an avid sports fan, and loves the Braves, the Patriots and of course, the University of Georgia.
Columbia County Board of Commissioners
Larry Hobbs is the GIS (Geographic Information Systems) Manager for Columbia County Board of Commissioners. He has over 26 years of experience in various technology fields within the public sector. His background includes GIS (Geographic Information Sciences), ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), Internal Services, UAS Program Management, Application Development, Database Administration, and Project Management.
Larry started his career with an Associate’s Degree in Computer Programming. He has acquired the Certified Government Chief Information Officer (CGCIO™), Local Government Chief Information Officer (LGCIO), and Certificate of Local Government Management through the University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government. He is also certified in ITIL® v3 Foundation. He is actively working on his GISP (Geographic Information Systems Professional).
Larry has been a member of GA GMIS (Georgia Government Management Information Sciences) since 1998. He is also an Adjunct Professor at Augusta Technical College teaching students programming fundamentals and business ethics. He believes in giving back to the community and in the fields of technology. He serves as a Student Advisory Committee member for Augusta Technical College, focusing on improved outreach to the next generation of professionals.
Larry is an Army Veteran. He believes in a balanced life. If he is not working to improve his agencies business needs, he is out in the woods hunting or fishing. Larry is a proud father of three young men. His boys have proudly followed in their father’s footsteps and they have serviced in the US Army.
Director of Information Technology
Brengman is an Army Veteran with 20 years of experience in the information technology field. After getting out of the Army in 1999 Benjamin worked as a desktop analyst and a then a network administrator for Welsh Companies in Minnesota. In 2001 Benjamin took a job as an information technology manager for Ambient Consulting in Minneapolis, Minnesota. While at Ambient Consulting he worked as a consultant for several large companies such as Wells Fargo, Target, Best Buy and NCS Pearson. In 2007, Benjamin moved to Savannah, GA to get away from the cold winters of Minnesota and has been a resident since then. During the move Benjamin continued to do consulting for Savannah businesses and in 2009 he was hired as a Information Technology Director for the City of Garden City and continues to work for them.
Benjamin has completed his ITLP which has been renamed LGCIO in 2014. He went to Hennepin technical college in Minneapolis, Mn.
Benjamin has been on the Georgia GMIS board for the past six years serving as president in 2016-17 and is again in the president until spring of 2019.
Director of Corporate Sponsorships
City Of Douglasville
Karen Knight is the Communications Coordinator for the City of Douglasville and has over 25 years of technology experience. She has obtained her Local Government Chief Information Officer (LGCIO) certificate & will complete the nationally recognized Certified Government Chief Information Officer™ (CGCIO™) in 2019, both from the Carl Vinson Institute of Government at the University of Georgia.
Mrs. Knight has been a member the GA GMIS Board of Directors since 2007 as the Director of Corporation Sponsorship. She serves as a member of the GMIS International Conference Planning Committee. Karen is the recipient of the GMIS International Hershel Strickland Award twice (2013 and 2017) and the GA GMIS Spirit of Georgia GMIS award in 2017.
Karen is also Secretary of GA MTUG (Motorola Trunked Users Group).
Outside of work, Karen is a big Star Wars fan, enjoys NASCAR, F1 and local dirt track racing, and showing their classic 1957 Ford with her husband, Ricky.
Public Service Assistant; Governmental Training, Education, And Development
Carl Vinson Institute of Government
University of Georgia
Michael spent more than 40 years in various management roles in the public and private sectors and was president of Complete Solutions LLC, a leadership and organizational development company.
With UGA for 17 years, he provides education, learning and developmental training to Georgia state agencies, counties, cities and school boards. He also facilitates meetings and retreats for staff and elected government officials and serves as a business coach and mediator for several organizations.
In addition to his work in Georgia, he provides training, facilitation, and consulting nationally and internationally.
He has a PHR designation from the Society for Human Resource Management and is registered as a Mediator/Alternative Dispute Resolution facilitator in Georgia. Mike is POST certified (Peace Officer Standards and Training), is an Instructor for the Georgia Firefighter Standards and Training Council (GFSTC), and is certified in numerous psycho-metric assessments.
Carl Vinson Institute of Government
University of Georgia
As part of the program coordination team at the Institute of Government, Tiffany’s responsibilities include event consultation, project management and logistics planning. Prior to joining the Institute of Government in May 2018, she coordinated and managed mandated training programs for judges and clerks throughout Georgia for over six years at the Institute of Continuing Judicial Education.
International hospitality management master’s, University of South Carolina; B.B.A. in management, University of Georgia
Areas of Expertise: venue selection, contract negotiation, program planning, event management