PHILADELPHIA – Mayor Kenney today announced the permanent appointment of Mark Wheeler as Chief Information Officer.
“After a nationwide search, I’m pleased to say that the very best choice comes from within the Office of Innovation and Technology,” said Mayor Kenney. “Mark brings tremendous leadership skills, a remarkable array of accomplishments that have brought innovation to our government, and a strong understanding of the solutions needed to fix and upgrade the back-office IT systems that drive our government.”
Mark Wheeler, AICP, GISP, has served as Acting Chief Information Officer for the City of Philadelphia Office of Innovation and Technology since January 2018. He previously served as Deputy CIO and Chief Geographic Information Officer, leading multiple teams of analysts, developers, and web designers. Wheeler joined the City in 2010 as a city planner for Philadelphia City Planning Commission and contributed to public outreach, land use and public facility planning for Philadelphia2035 district plans.
“During his tenure with the City, Mark Wheeler has proven himself to be an insightful and enterprising technologist,” said Chief Administrative Officer Christine Derenick-Lopez. “I’m confident that he is the perfect choice to lead OIT’s two-fold mandate: upgrading and improving the IT systems that empower City departments, while at the same time ensuring that Philadelphia remains a leader in municipal innovation to improve services to residents.”
As Chief Geographic Information Officer, Wheeler reinvigorated the City’s central GIS operations and introduced technologies to make collaboration, location-based analysis and data sharing easy and accessible to all city staff. This allowed departments to better communicate with the public and stakeholders on an array of projects and initiatives such as Rebuild and Community Schools. Mark initiated the public tools to better access the City’s property-related data, as well as years of imagery and maps via Atlas and OpenMaps. Through his leadership, the City has its first reliable inventory of vacant buildings and lots using data modeling and its first comprehensive and high-precision address database to support next generation E-911 technology. OIT has also entered into its first multi-agency partnerships to acquire customized street-level imagery that’s been used for site assessment and inspection planning as well as asset inventories. This effort has greatly assisted the Department of Licenses and Inspections in combating the negative impacts of chronic property vacancy.
“I’m honored and grateful to Mayor Kenney and CAO Derenick-Lopez for the opportunity to serve the city as CIO,” said Wheeler. “The Office of Innovation and Technology has dedicated, talented and passionate professionals, and I’m thrilled to work with them all to deliver the best level of service and innovative tools to our partner agencies, and especially to the people who live, work and visit Philly.”
Throughout his career Mark has pursued a passion for community engagement. He is a Citizens Planning Institute Advisory Board member and co-creator of the Neighbors Helping Neighbors Project and Citizens Toolkit. Mark previously worked as a consultant on spatial analysis projects and web apps, for state, local and regional government agencies across New York and New England. He has a master’s in regional planning from the University of Massachusetts.
The Office of Innovation and Technology was established in 2011. OIT oversees all major information and communications technology initiatives for the City of Philadelphia – increasing the effectiveness of the information technology infrastructure, where the services provided are advanced, optimized, and responsive to the needs of the City of Philadelphia’s businesses, residents and visitors. Among initiatives in which OIT plays a key role are Keyspots, and the Digital Literacy Alliance.