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Dave Cole

New Jersey State Chief Innovation Officer

Headshot photograph of Dave Cole

Dave Cole serves as the State of New Jersey’s Chief Innovation Officer and a Member of the Governor’s Cabinet. In this capacity, Dave, a native of New Jersey, focuses on enhancing innovation in government and in the Garden State’s economy. Using better data, more collective intelligence and agile technology, the Office of Innovation leads projects, designs policies, and advises agencies on innovative strategies to improve the lives of New Jerseyans.

Dave joined the Office of Innovation in 2020 to help the State respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, and served as a technology co-lead for the State’s COVID-19 vaccination program. He also co-founded and led the Resident Experience Initiative at the Office of Innovation, collaborating with state agencies to design and implement digital services in support of new policies and programs.

In his previous role, Dave was the Vice President of Strategy and Operations at a technology startup, overseeing international operations and business development. He played a key role in growing the company from 20 to over 500 employees, launching and managing teams in four countries, and securing multiple rounds of capital investment.

During President Obama’s first term, Dave served as a Senior Advisor to the Chief Information Officer and Deputy Director of New Media. Notably, he introduced open source technology to the White House, influencing other agencies to adopt similar approaches. Dave also served as a software engineer at 18F, a digital consultancy within the US General Services Administration, where he designed and launched the Federalist platform, supporting federal agencies in creating over 130 modern and efficient websites. Dave graduated from Rutgers University and is a native of New Jersey.

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