Spotlight on Ohlone:
New district chief technology officer

By Manika Casterline, News editor.

Thursday, April 22, 2010—Reprinted from Monitor.

Bruce Griffin at his desk. Bruce Griffin, chief technology officer. —Photo by Amy Kent.

Bruce Griffin has been named as the District’s Chief Technology Officer/ Assistant professor of Information Technology effective April 16.

The salary is approximately $158,000 per year.

Griffin started working at Ohlone in January 2008 as part of the Strata Information Group (SIG) contract.

The contract was controversial at the time due to the fact it would be outsourcing the IT department in order to tackle several bond- related projects, such as integrating technology onto the brand new Newark campus.

“What we were brought in to do was to shepard the IT organization through some big events that started in 2008. Newark was coming online and the campus was about to open,” said Griffin. Ohlone continued to utilize SIG due to their success at the Newark campus.

Griffin said, “After that we had more bond projects coming up. It was about providing stability and having another layer of accountability because it was a contract service at the time and there were so many high stakes projects at the time.”

However, in the past two years a restructuring of sorts has occurred due to the $2.6 million budget deficit that the college is facing for the 2010-’11 fiscal year. Some 150 sections have been cut as a response as a means of streamlining the college.

Griffin remains optimistic as to the direction of the IT department and the overall future of Ohlone.

“We have lived through the hiring frost and we have through attrition led the campus by example,” he said.

Griffin continued that the guiding principle in working with IT will be, “Not in terms of a layoff or something that will affect the staff. It is really more about finding efficiencies. We are in a phase where we can’t do some of the things in IT today in the same way we could do it six years ago.”

Bruce Griffin at work on his laptop. Griffin has a Bachelor Associates degree from the University of Arizona and a Masters Bachelor Associates degree from CSU Los Angeles. —Photo by Amy Kent.

While Griffin has a new position, he notes that there were some beneficial aspects with the prior arrangement that the college had with SIG.

“What we got with the SIG contract was assurance. I think now here we are two years later and it is probably not as important to the campus particularly given the budget situation.

It was a different budget climate when we came on board. But at the time, they had the opportunity to bring in someone that would have a support team behind them from a corporate standpoint. That really is where the value of that contract was, at a particularly important time in the history of the bond and the campus.”

Griffin said, “As time has changed the response has changed. The goal has become to stand on our own two feet.”

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