Fredrick Gomez Appointed AIO for California Department of Food and Agriculture

Published On: June 14, 2024

Fredrick Gomez has been named the new Agency Information Officer for the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA). He brings over 24 years of experience in government IT programs within the State of California to his new role.

Image: LinkedIn

In a telephone interview this week, Gomez said he aims to contribute positively to the agency’s mission by balancing stability and innovation in technology operations. He said that clear communication is the key to empowerment and strategic alignment within an organization that aims to enhance efficiency and security while fostering a collaborative team culture. He intends to focus on adaptability and resilience, driving continuous improvement and maintaining a commitment to excellence.

“I will be focusing on maturing our ISO and cybersecurity capabilities,” said Gomez. “This will help us be more proactive and better respond, remediate, and mitigate findings from a recent assessment conducted by CDT and an upcoming one from the California Military Department.”

He is starting at the height of California’s budget season and is familiarizing himself with CDFA’s unique budget. Current priorities include the project to implement a replacement of the existing legacy Emerging Threats (ET2) Information Management System for CDFA’s Animal Health and Food Safety Services division, and the CDFA Licensing and Payment Portal Project (LPP).

Gomez’s extensive career includes notable positions such as Chief of the IT Strategy Management Office at the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), where he served for the past two years, and Chief Information Officer at the California Public Utilities Commission from August 2018 to August 2022. He also served as Chief of Operations and Systems Support in the IT Infrastructure Management Division at Caltrans, a position he held from July 2014 to August 2018.  He also served in technology leadership roles at the Employment Development Department and the Office of Technology and Solutions Integration.

In his new capacity, Gomez will oversee IT strategy and operations at the CDFA, a department with more than 2000 employees working in programs supporting and regulating the state’s agriculture industry.

Gomez assumes the role after the departure of AIO after Rob Peterson last October. Department CIO Amar Hariharan will report directly to him.

The CDFA’s mission is to promote and protect the state’s agricultural industry, ensuring that it remains a safe, healthy, and abundant food source for both residents and the global market. The department also supports economic growth, innovation, and sustainability within California’s agricultural sector.

About the Author: Bill Maile

Bill Maile writes about technology and energy issues in California where he spent more than 15 years serving in state government. In 2011, he founded Techwire and served as its editor both before and after its acquisition by a national publisher. From 2008 to 2011, he was the communications director for the California Department of Technology. In more recent years, he helped launch two technology-related nonprofits, including TechCA.