When Dave Tolman accepted the call to become ITD’s new Administrator of the Division of Administration Aug. 23, it was the beginning of a smooth transition. All he had to do was move his desk since he had been performing the duties on an interim basis the previous two months.
Tolman, who had been ITD’s Controller the past six years, replaces Sue Simmons as head of the division.
He brought valuable experience, in both finance and budgeting, when he came to the transportation department in October 2001. His arrival at ITD was a natural progression, he said.
Tolman began his public career in 1990 at the State Controller’s Office. Five years later he transferred to the state’s Division of Financial Management, where he remained for six years. Both positions prepared him well for his duties at ITD – he has worked with a number of other state agencies and offices in what he calls a “holistic” approach to financial management rather than from the perspective of a single department.
It’s the same approach he will apply as head of the Division of Administration, which has about 156 positions but is financially responsible for about 40 other positions that report directly to director Pam Lowe.
Although he inherits a division that is operationally sound, several important challenges lie around the corner, Tolman admits.
First, he must fill two key positions – the one he vacated as Controller and the department’s Chief Technology Officer. He also will be responsible for “establishing good strategic direction” for Corporate IT.
The Information Technology group has completed a long and thorough transition, but now it needs a refined mission, Tolman explains. Selection of a new CTO is an important step in redefining Corporate IT’s integral role.
Tolman also anticipates about six months of preparation leading up to implementation of a major upgrade of the department’s financial, human resources and procurement computer system – ITD Advantage.
The process probably will take about a year, but will be most visible to users in the final six months, Tolman said. ITD employees should begin seeing the results of the planning next spring.
He also expects to continue evaluating the department’s long-range facility plan. He will review the plan to ensure that the goals and management remain valid. The challenge, Tolman says, will be to "make the most of the facilities we have without expending a lot of additional resources."
Tolman, who is married and has five children, earned a bachelor’s degree in finance from Brigham Young University in 1988 and followed with a master’s in Business Administration from Boise State University in 1996.