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Shawn Riley

“State government has been doing things that, frankly, it’s never even thought possible before. I was a private-sector guy my entire life, and all I ever heard about was how slow and pokey state government is, and I can understand why some of those stereotypes exist.

“But during Covid, we’ve been doing things faster in government than I could ever have dreamed of doing in the private sector. It’s been just an astounding group of people implementing their hearts into every bit of technology they can muster to try to save lives. Everyone uses technology every day and it’s so ubiquitous that sometimes they forget it’s there. And this year, we’ve seen a huge number of leaders realize the infrastructure behind the scenes is absolutely critical to their business.”

Shawn Riley is chief information officer for the State of North Dakota.