LEXINGTON, Ky. (Sept. 23, 2016) — An administrator with nearly 20 years of information technology (IT) experience and leadership in higher education has been selected as the University of Kentucky’s new chief information officer (CIO).
Brian T. Nichols assumed the CIO position at UK on Sept. 6. He comes to the university from Louisiana State University (LSU), where he was associate vice president for administration and information technology and CIO.
Nichols has held a variety of IT and leadership positions at LSU since 1998 and led a department with a $60 million budget and oversight over enterprise-wide information technology at Louisiana’s flagship, public research campus.
“Brian brings a broad and deep set of experiences in information technology and higher education to UK,” said Eric N. Monday, the university’s executive vice president for finance and administration. “We have made significant and important investments in recent years in technologies and analytical tools that will help foster student success. Brian will add to that capacity a deep commitment to customer service, strategic planning, and the efficient delivery of services in what is a dramatically changing and growing field.”
Specifically, Monday cited Nichols’ experience in guiding LSU’s information technology strategic plan and his leadership role in improving the university’s cybersecurity and infrastructure.
During the tenure of Nichols at LSU, email and IT services migrated to the cloud computer and the institution’s network infrastructure was modernized to expand and improve wireless network capacity and connectivity.
In addition, new learning management systems and a Faculty Technology Center was expanded to support students and faculty.
“I am delighted and honored to be joining the University of Kentucky. This is an extraordinary opportunity to join one of the premier research institutions in the world — the University for Kentucky,” Nichols said. “In an increasingly interconnected world, IT organizations must focus on collaboration, customer service, innovation, and providing the efficient delivery of services to faculty, staff and students. I look forward to working in collaboration with campus colleagues to explore new opportunities to embrace, enhance and advance information technology at the university.”
Nichols has a bachelor’s degree in microbiology and a master’s degree in information systems management from LSU. He is certified in risk management and security management and is a member of a number of higher education administration and information technology leadership organizations.
A search committee, composed of faculty and staff, recommended Nichols after a national search. Nichols replaces Vince Kellen, who left UK in May, to assume a similar position at the University of California, San Diego.