Welcome Bill Thirsk

Join us in welcoming our new Chief Digital and Information Officer (CDO/CIO), Bill Thirsk.

Bill joined Brown in Februrary. Computing & Information Services is excited to be a digital organization with his leadership.

The following is excerpted from the news.brown.edu article about his appointment:

Bill ThirskIn his role, Thirsk will lead an integrated and cohesive approach to digital strategy and technology platforms, overseeing a full range of information technology and data functions across the University. He will also direct Brown’s Digital Transformation Project, a roadmap created in 2016 that prioritizes a more user-centric approach to the University’s digital relationship with students and alumni.

In working toward a cohesive digital ecosystem at Brown to support education and research, business operations and more, Thirsk will report jointly to Provost Richard M. Locke and Executive Vice President for Finance and Administration Barbara Chernow. 

With 30 years of experience in higher education technology management, Thirsk served previously as CIO at both Mercy College and St. Thomas University. His experience has been broad-based, covering such areas as technology planning, network management, telecommunications, web services and instructional technology.

An established voice on technology management for universities, he has contributed insights and expertise to publications such as the Wall Street Journal, IBM Systems Magazine, National Public Radio, CIO Magazine and Computerworld Magazine. He has also presented to global audiences at conferences such as IBM Pulse, Ellucian Live and the Network World Open Network Exchange. 

Thirsk serves as board chair of NYSERNet.org, a nonprofit New York State internet, education, research and technology service organization, and on the board of directors for the North East Research and Education Network, a nonprofit consortium that provides a fiber-optic network connecting most most major research and state universities in New England. 

In coming to Brown, Thirsk says he looks forward to building on the launch of the Digital Transformation Project to fully realize the University’s vision for an integrated digital ecosystem that provides all community members with the tools and capacities needed to support the operations of a major research institution.

“I am tremendously excited to join Brown on its journey toward digital transformation,” Thirsk said. “Brown is well known for its mission of service and for leveraging technology to enhance academic excellence and engagement with the community. I look forward to being a part of the next era of innovation and discovery at the University.”

Thirsk earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from George Washington University and a master’s degree in business administration from the New York Institute of Technology. He is also a veteran of the United States Marine Corps.

Written by sobodda@brown.edu on