Mark VanOrden became executive director of the Utah Department of Technology Services in 2012, after serving for several months as the department’s acting director. Prior to that, VanOrden spent six years as IT director for the Utah Department of Workforce Services. He began his career with the state in 1982. Government Technology talked to VanOrden about Utah’s newly launched open data portal.
Why is the state launching an open data site?
Financial transparency information, including payroll data, for state and local entities in Utah has been available online for a number of years. Last year, our state Legislature passed a bill to take this further and add all open or public data to a central website. We got funded for this on July 1. Using tools from Socrata, we created the initial release of opendata.utah.gov on Jan. 1, with about 900 data sets. We’re still growing; this is the first phase.
We have a data coordinator who is working with the agencies. Our goal is to have all open data for all government entities in Utah on this site by December 2016.