Meet the IT-oLogy team.
Emard was instrumental in the formation of the Consortium for Enterprise Systems Management and was named the executive director in January 2009. He is responsible for the strategic planning and tactical operations of the Consortium, including financial management and facility planning. He has been passionately working to bring academic, business, economic development and public relations entities together to address the need for more workers in the IT talent pipeline.
Emard joined BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina in 2002 as the director of staff resource management for the information systems division. Under his direction, the BlueCross BlueShield information systems organization grew from 1,200 employees and contractors to more than 2,300 in seven years. His management techniques helped the IS division maintain a 93 percent retention rate at a time when other information technology companies were struggling to keep their best people.
Emard also was responsible for the Managing People Program, which includes best practices in talent acquisition, development, management and retention. He introduced the organizational, structure design (OSD) model as a valuable framework for the Institute for the Management of Information Technology offered by the Rushing Center at Furman University.
Before he joined BlueCross BlueShield, Emard spent 18 years as an information technology professional working for Amoco Corp. He followed the model IT career path, holding seven different types of IT positions before becoming an IT executive manager. Emard also worked on several major organizational redesign efforts and began integrating organization development theory into IT. His efforts during this time also included roles as executive lead recruiter for Georgia Tech and the Atlanta University Center, where he began developing innovative techniques for academic and industry collaboration.
Emard serves on several boards, including the Columbia Chamber of Commerce Information Technology Council, Midlands Education and Business Alliance, New Carolina's Insurance Technology and Services cluster and the Innovation in Insurance organization.
He graduated from Northwest Missouri State University with a bachelor's of science in computer science in 1981.
Financial and Resource Director
Kristine has over six years of experience in IT talent recruitment. She was part of the originial BlueCross, USC, and IBM team that began meeting in 2007 to design a program that would increase the number of talented individuals in the IT talent pool. That program has evolved into an entire organization, known today as IT-oLogy.
Teach IT Director and Campus Recruiting
Bethany comes to IT-oLogy with more than seven years of experience in the corporate, non-profit, and academic arenas. She is a proud graduate of the University of South Carolina’s journalism school and a native of Dallas, TX. Bethany will connect students to IT internships through the Next Generation IT Internship Program and serve as the administrator for the IT Gateway, an online portal that connects employers with qualified IT candidates.
Marketing and Communications Director
Rachel Barnett brings more than 25 years of experience in communications to IT-oLogy. She “cut her teeth” in the world of advertising and public relations at the full service agency, Chernoff/Silver (now Chernoff Newman.) From her first position in 1986 as a young media buyer to senior account executive and special events manager 18 years later, her work experience has run the communications and marketing gamut.
Previous positions have included marketing director at EdVenture Children’s Museum and Director of Marketing at the College of Hospitality, Retail, and Sport Management at the University of South Carolina where she was on staff when IT-oLogy was first begun. Her commitment and interest in IT-oLogy stems from the planning and implementation of the first Computer Camp held at USC in 2007.
Barnett is a proud graduate of the University of South Carolina College of Mass Communications with a BA in Advertising/Public Relations.
Promote IT Director
Alicia comes to IT-oLogy with over seven years of customer service and training experience in the IT world. Having taught software to Americans and local staff at over 40 US embassies overseas, she has been exposed to the information technology business world-wide from an educational standpoint. Alicia is excited to be a part of an organization that Promotes IT, Teaches IT, and Grows IT. Alicia manages the Promote IT (K-12) initiative.
Grow IT Director
Jim Stritzinger is an experienced high-tech entrepreneur with 20+ years of experience. He graduated from NC State with an Electrical Engineering degree. His technology career began during high school in 1982 and he’s held a variety of roles. He’s spent time as a power systems engineer for General Electric. He’s worked in his family’s computer store, launched his own software company, sold it, and then joined the Sr. Management team at Microsoft. He formed South Carolina’s private equity company called SC Launch and he served as a general manager for the Immedion data center in Columbia, SC.
Jim grew up in Delaware and has lived in South Carolina since the summer of 2000. Jim is married and the father of three adult daughters. He’s a competitive runner, golfer and triathlete and is currently training for a half Ironman.
Social Media Manager and Office Coordinator
Jordan Morris joins IT-oLogy as the Social Media Manager and Office Coordinator. Jordan graduated from the University of South Carolina with a BFA in Studio Art, and she was previously Social Media and Public Relations assistant at the Columbia Museum of Art.
Executive Director, IT-oLogy @ Innovista- Columbia
(803) 354.5730 Ext. 1005
Prior to serving as Executive Director, Todd served as Managing Partner of Palmetto Computer Labs, an open source consulting firm. In addition, he started POSSCON, one of the premier and largest open source conferences on the east coast, as well as the Open IT Lab @ IT-oLogy, a center for open source awareness, education and R&D.
When not working, Todd remains heavily involved in community service. He currently serves on the boards of the Columbia Chamber Information Technology Council (ITC), the SC Humane Society, the American Red Cross Blood Services Division, and the Columbia Sertoma Club where he serves as VP and is a past President and Chairman.
Executive Director, IT-oLogy Dallas/Fort Worth
The vision that is today IT-oLogy was the spark that first interested Lawrence Ford in Information Technology nearly forty years ago. What started as an interest became a passion that led Ford to pursue formal education in Computer Science and Applied Mathematics at the University of California, San Diego.
From that time until now, Ford has used both his passion for and training in IT at non-profit organizations around the world, from teaching basic computer skills in Eastern Europe to providing IT management services for media organizations to integrating emerging technologies with global communication and education initiatives for scientific research.
Prior to joining IT-oLogy, Ford directed the communications efforts at a Dallas-based science institute through publishing, radio, television, and conference programs. He served as Executive Editor of a monthly magazine reaching more than 250,000 readers and numerous hardcover, trade, and specialty books, as well as multimedia curriculum products. Ford has enjoyed writing extensively for news publications for print, digital, and web platforms, establishing and managing social media outlets, and spearheading public relations efforts.
Ford has called Dallas his home since 1984. He will spearhead the expansion efforts of IT-oLogy in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex, one of the nation’s largest regions for technology manufacturing and services.