Kraemer named UW-Madison information technology leader

July 17, 2007

by Brian Mattmiller

Ron Kraemer

Kraemer

Ronald D. Kraemer has been named the new chief information officer (CIO) and vice provost for information technology for the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Provost Patrick Farrell announced today.

Kraemer, currently the deputy CIO and associate director for UW-Madison's Division of Information Technology (DoIT), will begin the job on August 15. Kraemer will step into a redefined position that continues to oversee DoIT's technology service operations, but will also play a more expansive role in shaping information technology strategy for the entire campus.

"Ron's extensive leadership experience, his broad knowledge of UW-Madison's information technology landscape, and his work on regional and national higher education IT challenges make him an ideal fit for this position," says Farrell. "Ron will have an opportunity to bring major improvements to campus information technology by working closely with faculty, staff and students, and helping identify vital new directions that enhance our learning and research missions."

Kraemer has been deputy CIO since November 2005, and prior to that served for a full decade as CIO of the UW-Extension. At DoIT, Kraemer directly managed units that deliver network services, enterprise-wide Internet services, information security and user support services. He is also part of campus teams providing leadership on identity management issues, administrative process redesign, learning management system services, support for research computing, and crisis operations.

"UW-Madison is one of the great education and research institutions in the world and I am very proud to be the new CIO," says Kraemer. "Technology is more critical than ever to teaching, learning, research and service, and as CIO I look forward to working with our faculty, staff and students to ensure that we are using technology as effectively as possible."

Kraemer is replacing Interim CIO Kenneth Frazier, who will return full-time to director of the University Library System. Frazier served as interim CIO since July 2006, following the retirement of CIO Annie Stunden after seven years of leadership.

Following a review by external consultants and university CIOs, the position was expanded to fill a need for a more strategic direction for the campus. Kraemer will also oversee DoIT, the central technology service division for the campus, and its 500-plus full-time employees and budget of more than $70 million.

"I'm most excited about the value that IT can bring to campus if we leverage key technology components as campus resources," Kraemer says. "In this position, my responsibility will be to build collaboration across campus to align IT goals with strategic campus goals."

There have been some major successes in recent years of coordinated approaches to campus technology. Kraemer cites the expanded electronic access to University Libraries; the development of learning management systems and learning spaces; and campus wireless access, now at 80 percent campus-wide; as developments that have had a major impact.

While there has been widespread attention in recent years to one large technology system that failed, Kraemer says the vast majority of systems at UW-Madison were successfully deployed and are making the university both more efficient and cost-effective.

Another early goal for Kraemer will be to create an information safeguarding task force that will develop a comprehensive IT security strategy for the campus. Kraemer says the university continues to do things on a daily basis, often in low-key ways, to maintain network security, but continuous, strategic improvement processes are needed to counter emerging threats.

Prior to joining UW-Extension, Kraemer was a program manager for Oak Ridge National Laboratory from 1988-1996; and associate director of the Energy, Environment and Resources Center (EERC) for the University of Tennessee at Knoxville from 1984-1988.

Kraemer received his bachelor's degree in geography from UW-Eau Claire in 1978; and his master's in geography, with an emphasis in geographical information systems, from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville in 1983.

His salary will be $222,000.