Industry Eagle Award winner: Casey Coleman

Zaid Hamid

Efforts to help the state of Rhode Island and the Small Business Administration respond to the COVID pandemic were just the latest chapters in Coleman's contributions to the government IT community.

Like many of this year's Federal 100 winners, Casey Coleman was recognized in part for her work supporting the government's COVID response efforts. As a senior vice president for Salesforce Global Public Sector, Coleman led a team that helped the state of Rhode Island launch a contact tracing system early in the pandemic. The core system launched less than a month, and new features like test scheduling were often brought live in as little a week. The solution also brought new levels of real-time monitoring for everything from the inventory of test kits and personal protective equipment to testing rates in the workforce. Within months, similar capabilities were online for 35 states and multiple governments around the world.  

Coleman and her team also helped the Small Business Administration launch a modernized paycheck protection loan program -- another effort that could have earned a Fed 100 on its own. That work sped the delivery of billions of dollars that kept small businesses going at a critical time, and allowed SBA to operate at an unprecedented scale. 

Those efforts, however, were just the latest chapter in Coleman's contributions to the government IT community. Now a four-time Fed 100 winner, Coleman served as both CTO and CIO of the General Services Administration during her 12 years at that agency. She was instrumental in launching GSA's Office of Citizen Services, led the federal government's first agency migration to a cloud-based email and collaboration platform, and was a key player in crafting the government's foundational cloud computing initiatives -- including the creation of FedRAMP.    

Since shifting to the private sector in 2014 -- first at AT&T Government Solutions, then Unisys and finally Salesforce -- Coleman has continued to reinforce her reputation as a technologist who understands how to translate those technologies into practical government solutions. Now based in Texas, she remains an active and visible presence in Washington.  

What truly set Coleman apart for the Eagle judges, however, was her career-long history of sharing that expertise with others and actively mentoring both government officials and private-sector professionals.

"Casey dedicates tremendous time and effort supporting other women in the Salesforce ranks," a previous Eagle Award winner noted, "especially up-and-coming leaders." Having successfully moved from government to industry while keeping public service front and center, she also devotes significant energy to counseling other federal and state employees looking to do the same -- stressing that all the technology in the world amounts to little without the right people to apply it.