Utah Digital Government Summit 2024 Banner


The Digital Government Summit brings together technology focused public-sector professionals with leading industry partners to connect on innovative approaches, get inspired and discover new technologies. Join us and let’s improve the future of government together!

Now accepting submissions for the 2024 Utah IT Excellence Awards: Submission form is here.
Submission deadline is May 5, 2024

A message from our Keynote Speaker

We are excited to gather once again for the annual Utah Digital Government Summit! This year’s Summit will provide the unique opportunity for you to be able to collaborate with your peers and network with industry partners. You can participate in important discussions around artificial intelligence, data security and privacy, and much more. The Summit is a chance to connect with others to innovate and solve challenges around IT. I’m looking forward to it, and I hope to see you there!

– Alan Fuller, Chief Information Officer, State of Utah


Sharon Gai

Sharon Gai

Keynote Speaker and Author

Sharon Gai is an international female keynote speaker for corporations, associations and the public sector. Using her unique background from the east and west, she works with leaders worldwide to understand how to adopt AI into their workflows to increase productivity and efficiency. In her tenure at Alibaba, she advised brands and heads of state in crafting their digital strategy with programmatic marketing and AI. She has been the keynote speaker at TEDx, Singularity University, UBS, Deloitte, LVMH, Nestle, Ecomworld, and Etail. She is in the AAE list of Top Keynote Speakers in 2023. She is also one of 2024’s RETHINK Retail’s Top Retail Expert and a LinkedIn Top Voice in Public Speaking 2023. She has appeared on Bloomberg, ABC, CBC, CCTV, Techcrunch, Retail Asia, Wired, and The Next Web. She is the author of the book, Ecommerce Reimagined. Sharon has an Honors Bachelor’s degree in International Development from McGill and a Masters in Information and Knowledge Strategy from Columbia University.

Joshua Ihrig

Joshua Ihrig

Information Systems Division Director, City of Provo

Joshua Ihrig is an experienced IT executive with over 25 years in various sectors, currently serving as the Information Systems Director for Provo City. A champion of digital equity, he has played a key role in initiatives such as bringing and implementing Google Fiber high speed internet services in Provo, building a computer donation program, and developing a digital inclusion web playbook. His efforts have earned multiple NDIA Trailblazer Awards and supported successful applications for substantial digital equity grants. Joshua actively participates in local, national, and state-level digital opportunity networks, promoting broadband access, digital skills, and device availability. He will be moderating the session "Bridging the Divide: Advancing Digital Equity for All!" at the Utah Digital Government Summit, sharing insights on fostering engagement opportunities through emerging technologies.

Amelia Powers Gardner

Amelia Powers Gardner

County Commissioner, Utah County Government, Provo, State of Utah  

Amelia Powers Gardner has over 15 years of experience in the private sector working in engineering, manufacturing, and business development. After college, she worked for Caterpillar, spending time throughout the U.S. and Canada before returning home to Utah County where she now serves as a County Commissioner.
As the Utah County Clerk/Auditor, Amelia championed innovation and efficiency in government. Under Amelia’s leadership, Utah County launched the first ever completely online marriage license portal and became the first jurisdiction in the U.S. to allow people with disabilities to vote using blockchain technology.
Amelia’s focus as County Commissioner has centered on preparing the county for growth, working with cities on addressing the housing crisis, and implementing policies that protect urban farming and private property rights.
Amelia is an elected official, community leader, business consultant, disruptive technology advocate, government innovation leader, and mentor for women.
She and her husband Tobin live in Pleasant Grove, UT and have 6 children.


Spencer Thellmann

Senior Product Manager, Palo Alto Networks 

Spencer Thellmann is a Senior Product Manager at Palo Alto Networks, focusing on AI Runtime Security. He holds an MPhil in Technology Policy from the University of Cambridge. At Palo Alto Networks, Spencer develops innovative products that ensure real-time protection for AI systems against evolving threats. His work bridges technology policy and cybersecurity, contributing to the advancement of AI safety and security.

View Speakers


Wednesday, June 26

8:00 am Mountain

Registration and Morning Refreshments in the Exhibit Area

9:00 am Mountain

Opening Remarks

Alan Fuller, Chief Information Officer, State of Utah

9:15 am Mountain

Keynote – Leading the AI Revolution: IT's New Role in Global Public Sector Innovation

AI is reshaping everything and IT leaders in government and public sector organizations stand at a pivotal juncture. Traditionally viewed as reactive and slower to innovate than the private sector, the public sector is now uniquely positioned to take a hands-on stance in AI implementation. To do that, we need to understand how IT departments can anticipate and address business needs proactively. In this whirlwind session, digital transformation and AI expert, Sharon Gai, will take us on a journey around the world. Starting from the bustling streets of Hangzhou to the high-tech healthcare facilities of Tokyo, and finally to the classrooms of New York. Through this session, government leaders will understand the myriad ways AI is redefining society and be equipped with actionable insights, aiding them in harnessing the full potential of AI for the betterment of their communities.

Sharon Gai, Keynote Speaker & Author

10:15 am Mountain

Networking Break in the Exhibit Area

10:45 am Mountain

Concurrent Sessions

Cybersecurity is a Team Sport: Collaboration is Key to Success

Cyber-attacks are increasing in potency and frequency while becoming more treacherous to navigate each year. State and local governments must form a proactive team, using shared models to fight this fight. Do you have what it takes to work with your peers? This session will explore the resources, funding and partnerships within the State of Utah that can help keep everyone safe.

Debbie Johnson, IT Manager, Provo, State of Utah

Reality vs Speculation on AI: Policies and Frameworks

As AI continues to march into the workplace, it has the potential to change government for the better. But what is realistically possible? Ethics, processes, and policies are also key factors in deploying AI to improve public sector operations. What are the potential challenges and risks involved? This session delves into the framework considerations needed for AI utilization in the public domain – ethically and safely.

Moderator: Steve Towns, Deputy Chief Content Officer, Government Technology

Carlos Rivero, Executive Government Advisor, Amazon Web Services

Spencer Thellmann, Senior Product Manager, Palo Alto Networks

The IT Workforce of the Future

Workforce challenges in the public sector are not a new issue – but one that has certainly evolved over the last few years. What skills are ACTUALLY needed to have an effective team in 2024? How can we ensure we have the right people in place to align IT initiatives with business strategies? Are there new approaches to examine as we look to retain and upskill our current staff? This session will provide answers to those questions as we strive to build a robust and dynamic workforce.

Moderator: Teri Takai, Senior Vice President, Center for Digital Government

Zachery Posner, Chief Information Officer, Salt Lake County

Bridging the Divide: Advancing Digital Equity for All!

Digital equity and inclusion are not just about connectivity. Access to broadband is but a piece of the puzzle. The issue of equitable use comes into play. What will governments do to create full engagement opportunities for all? How will emerging technologies such as AI support this endeavor? How will we make those technologies accessible to all? This session provides foundational knowledge on how to drive digital equity forward, educate community members in digital literacy and fluency, and looks at the great work that is being done in the state of Utah to improve the equitable use of technology.

Moderator: Joshua Ihrig, Information Systems Division Director, City of Provo

Teri Mumm, Digital Access Program Manager, Utah Broadband Center, Governor's Office of Economic Opportunity

Robert Roake, Director of Operations and Programming, The Center for Economic Opportunity and Belonging, and Manager, Utah Digital Opportunity Network

11:45 am Mountain


12:25 pm Mountain

Utah IT Excellence Awards

12:45 pm Mountain

Bits and Bytes – State of Utah Technology Legislative Update

1:05 pm Mountain

Short Break

Please proceed to the concurrent sessions.

1:15 pm Mountain

Concurrent Sessions

Embracing Data Privacy is the New Normal

Data is everywhere and it is being pressed into service in ways that none of us could have imagined just a few years ago. Such a valuable commodity deserves to be leveraged to its fullest benefit. How will you use data to serve your constituents while still maintaining privacy? This session discusses ways to overcome the challenges inherent in pushing for greater data privacy.

Low-Code, No-Code, and You

Are low-code and no-code the future of application development? Most say yes. Without a doubt, low-code and no-code tools are playing increasingly important roles in speeding up the delivery of applications. But the landscape is complex. There are pros and cons to each approach, depending on the scope of the project, customization requirements, and capabilities within your organization. This session takes a look at which approach(es) might be best suited to your needs.

Moderator: Steve Towns, Deputy Chief Content Officer, Government Technology

Digital Delivery of Government Services: The Citizen Portal

The Citizen Portal Project in Utah is set to bring revolutionary change in the way citizens interact with government and access services. What are some of the early lessons learned with this project? What can we expect with the project’s future launch? Join this conversation to hear from those who are spearheading this project and are working on the next steps.

Exclusive Briefing for Industry Partners

Hosted by: Alan Fuller, Chief Information Officer, State of Utah

2:15 pm Mountain

Networking Break in the Exhibit Area

2:35 pm Mountain

General Session – The State of AI in GovTech: Exploring the Future

Presented by the Center for Public Sector AI, this keynote presentation delves into the present status of Artificial Intelligence in the GovTech sector, offering a detailed examination of AI's applications within state and local governments. We will explore AI's potential future paths in GovTech, highlighting emerging trends and discussing how technology and policy leaders can prepare for AI's impact on service delivery. We will address starting points for AI implementation, stressing the importance of collaboration, ethical considerations, and equitable technology access. This forward-looking talk will equip attendees with a thorough understanding of AI's trajectory in GovTech, providing practical insights to effectively leverage AI for public sector innovation and advancement.

Teri Takai, Senior Vice President, Center for Digital Government

3:45 pm Mountain

Networking Reception in the Exhibit Area

Network with your colleagues and discuss technology solutions with the event exhibitors.

4:15 pm Mountain

End of Conference

Conference times, agenda, and speakers are subject to change.

Hyatt Regency Salt Lake City

170 South West Temple
Salt Lake City, UT 84101
(801) 596-1234

Get Directions To
Hyatt Regency Salt Lake City

Advisory Board

Government Representatives

Robert Allred
IT Director
City of West Jordan

Brody Arishita
Chief Information Officer
State Courts
State of Utah

Phil Bates
Chief Information Security Officer
Division of Technology Services
State of Utah

Aaron Bentley
Chief Information Officer
Salt Lake City

Ron Boyer
Information Technology Director
Information Technology
Summit County

Justin Brooksby
Associate Director, Instructional Services
Utah Education Network

Nate Christensen
Research Economist
Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute
University of Utah

Tricia Cox
Assistant Division Director
Division of Technology
State of Utah

Chris Earl
Chief Information Officer
Attorney General
State of Utah

Reza Faraji
Chief Technology Officer
Information Management Services
Salt Lake City

Alan Fuller
Chief Information Officer
Division of Technology Services, Department of Government Operations
State of Utah

Bert Granberg
Director of Analytics
Wasatch Front Regional Council

Steve Hess
Chief Information Officer
University of Utah

Laura Hunter
Chief Operating Officer
Utah Education and Telehealth Network

Josh Ihrig
Information Systems Division Director
Provo City

Joe Jackson
Chief Enterprise Architect
Division of Technology Services
State of Utah

Peter Jay
Utah Ignite

Jared Jensen
Director of Enterprise Products
Division of Technology Services, Department of Government Operations
State of Utah

Debbie Johnson
IT Project Manager
Department of Government Operations, City & County Cybersecurity Outreach
State of Utah

George McEwan
Chief Strategy Officer
Division of Technology Services, Department of Government Operations
State of Utah

Jeff Mottishaw
Managing Director & Director of Operational Efficiency
Governor's Office of Planning and Budget
State of Utah

Jason Nelson
IT Director
Sandy City

Greg Paras
Deputy Director
Department of Workforce Services
State of Utah

Zach Posner
Chief Information Officer
Information Technology
Salt Lake County

Amelia Powers Gardner
Commission Chair
Utah County

Natalie Pyne
Digital Communications Manager
Office of Governor Cox
State of Utah

Mark Schultz
Agency Services Director
Division of Technology Services
State of Utah

Rachael Stewart
IT Director
Health and Human Services
State of Utah

Stephanie Weteling
Public Information Officer
Division of Technology Services, Department of Government Operations
State of Utah

Kenneth Williams
Division of Archives and Records Service
State of Utah

Chris Williamson
Chief Technology Officer
Division of Technology Services, Department of Government Operations
State of Utah

Industry Representatives

Bruce Larson
Principal Account Manager
Amazon Web Services

Brett Stott
General Manager
Tyler Technologies

Nikole Trimble
Account Manager
Palo Alto Networks

Registration Information / Contact Us

Event Date: June 26, 2024

Open to Public Sector only.

Registration - Free

If you represent a Private Sector organization and are interested in Sponsorship Opportunities, please contact Heather Earney.

Contact Information

For registration and general assistance contact:

Kathy Simpson
Government Technology
Phone: (916) 932-1394
E-mail: ksimpson@erepublic.com

Sponsorship opportunities are available. For more information, contact:

Heather Earney
Government Technology
Phone: (916) 932-1339
E-mail: heather.earney@erepublic.com


Hyatt Regency Salt Lake City

170 South West Temple
Salt Lake City, UT 84101
(801) 596-1234

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There is no room set up for this event. There are a number of hotels nearby.


Parking vouchers will be available for half-day parking (up to four hours) and full-day parking. You may pick up your parking voucher at the event registration desk.