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CIO leaves University, interim leader installed

Aaron Steiner | Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Gordon Wishon has vacated his post as Chief Information Officer (CIO) at the University, and an interim CIO has taken his place in leading the Office of Information Technology (OIT).

Wishon’s last official day was Jan. 31, however, multiple sources told The Observer that Wishon left the University several weeks ago, and an interim CIO was installed prior to Wishon’s last official day at Notre Dame.

University Executive Vice President John Affleck-Graves said last week that Wishon approached administrators at the end of 2009 to discuss his intention to leave Notre Dame.

“I think he felt after eight and a half years [at Notre Dame] he just wanted to do something different,” Affleck-Graves said. “I think he’s moving more into a consulting role, and [it was] just a decision at this stage that it was time for him to move on.”

Affleck-Graves confirmed he has since installed John Sejdinaj, University vice president for Finance, as the interim CIO.

It was unclear what Wishon’s initial plans were after leaving Notre Dame. Calls to Wishon’s South Bend residence were not returned, and Wishon declined to comment when reached through former colleagues at OIT. Sources told The Observer Wishon has moved from the area.

Wishon joined the University in 2001 as CIO, associate provost and associate vice president.

Affleck-Graves said Wishon “made a large number of contributions to technology programs” during his tenure including overseeing the replacement of the University’s enterprise systems.

Affleck-Graves said a search for the next CIO is already underway, but declined to give a timeline for when a new officer might be selected.

He said the priority was to find “somebody who has the vision and the experience to lead such an important department on campus.”

In the meantime, Sejdinaj will provide leadership for OIT, Affleck-Graves said. He called Sejdinaj “a very experienced administrator” who has “worked with all of our administrative systems,” making him the best choice for the interim CIO.

Affleck-Graves said the University would announce the new CIO as soon one is hired.
Prior to coming to Notre Dame, Wishon was CIO the Georgia Institute of Technology from 1994 to 2001. He had previously served 20 years in the U.S. Air Force, ending his military career as CIO at the Air Force Institute of Technology.

During his nine-year tenure at Notre Dame, Wishon led numerous developments and changes at OIT, including the installation of the University’s current enterprise system, Renovare, and the conversion of most of the University’s business operations systems to Banner.

During his tenure, OIT experienced physical renovations in the ITC building. OIT also implemented the online course management system known as Concourse, installed basic cable in all University residence halls, installed wireless Internet access in the majority of teaching and living spaces on campus, converted legacy Webmail e-mail systems to Gmail and Microsoft Exchange, and led the implementation of the University’s emergency response system.

In 2004 Wishon was selected as one of Computerworld Magazine’s Premier 100 IT Leaders. During his tenure, Notre Dame was awarded CIO Magazine’s CIO100 award for innovation in information technology in 2005 and again in 2008.