HSU Names New Info-Tech Chief

Anna E. Kircher, who has 19 years of leadership experience with information technology systems, has been named chief information officer of Humboldt State University’s information technology services division. She succeeds Ann Burroughs, who was interim CIO following the retirement of Bill Cannon early this year.

Kircher comes to Arcata from the University of Washington, Seattle, where she served as assistant dean of information services at the School of Nursing, rated the number one school of its kind by U.S. News & World Report. Kircher formulated the nursing school’s strategic plan, re-envisioned and re-engineered its information technology/services, and assisted with the university central IT unit’s strategic planning initiative.

Her experience also includes the directorship of computing and communications at Evergreen State College, Olympia, Washington, where she established that institution’s first information technology governance structure and process for information technology.

In the mid-1990s, she was director of computing services at Southern Oregon State College, Ashland, performing omnibus work that included the design, execution, support and maintenance of campus-wide information technology systems.

Kircher earned her master’s of science in applied information management from the University of Oregon in 1994, conducted master’s studies in rangeland resource management at Oregon State University in 1978 and gained her bachelor’s of science degree in rangeland resource management the year before, also at Oregon State.

Active in a variety of capacities in the NorthWest Academic Computing Consortium, she was vice chair of the board 2004-2005 and chair that same year of the Inter-institutional Committee of Chief Technology Officers for Washington public universities.

“I’m really excited about coming to work at Humboldt State University,” Ms. Kircher said. “I wholeheartedly believe in HSU’s commitment to active, hands-on learning; I have a passion for the natural sciences; and think the university is an ideal size in which to build and enjoy strong community. Given California State University budgets, assuming responsibility for leading the university’s information technology services and initiatives will be a challenge. But I’m looking forward to the work of transforming that challenge into an opportunity for innovation.”

HSU’s information technology services division provides campus-wide computing and communications services and is affiliated with the Center for the Support of Instructional Technology to promote the use of academic technologies. Along with the CIO, the ITS division comprises academic computing (central computing labs, smart classrooms and media distribution), instructional media services, telecommunications and network services and university computing services, which is home to the Help Desk. ITS has an annual budget of $5 million and a staff of 45.

The chief information officer is the chief strategist and visionary for IT planning and implementation and manages the daily operations of information technology resources. The CIO reports to the Vice President for Academic Affairs and serves on HSU’s Council of Deans and the President’s Executive Committee.