August 17, 2023

TASSCC Award Photo

Exceptional leadership can pave the way for transformative change and innovation. Ed Pierson, Chief Information Officer and Vice President for Technology Services at Texas A&M University, is one such leader, and his dedication and vision have earned the esteemed Trailblazer Award from the Texas Association of State Systems for Computing and Communications (TASSCC).

The TASCC Trailblazer Award recognizes senior-level individuals who have left an indelible mark on their organizations through outstanding leadership and unwavering commitment. As an advocate of progress, Pierson has embodied the essence of this award as not just a personal triumph, but a testament to the collective effort of a dedicated team at Texas A&M.

His gratitude extends to those who nominated him and the selection committee who recognized his contributions. He acknowledges that such an achievement is an affirmation of the hard work of the entire team, whose relentless efforts have reshaped the landscape of Technology Services at Texas A&M University.

In an environment marked by complexity, The Team orchestrated a consolidation of shared services, unifying many distributed IT teams across campus into a singular technology powerhouse. This shifted the distributed teams from reactive to proactive solutions. Within the division, he led the charge in transitioning from more than 30 disparate IT groups to a cohesive Technology Services unit comprising 700+ skilled professionals. This transformative feat, undertaken while providing enhanced service to more 74,000 students, 4,000 faculty members and countless staff, is a testament to the team at Texas A&M University.

The campuswide centralization was the initial catalyst that led Pierson and his team to embark on monumental projects to further streamline technology and make them more robust. The deployment of an additional 10,000 WiFi access points, which doubled the WiFi capacity within 500 buildings on campus, is one such project, and is part of a larger refresh of the entire network system of Texas A&M. Additionally, Pierson endorsed a holistic approach to training, encompassing both full-time staff and student workers, ensuring that expertise in current and emerging technologies is readily available. Finally, another notable accomplishment is the transition to a unified helpdesk solution from a myriad of disparate systems to streamline operations and enhance user experience.

“Beyond addressing needs within our organization, we have been able to begin to address the operational needs of the university,” said Pierson. “From 74,000 students to the numerous staff and faculty represented on campus, we are able to provide the new technology needed when the campus is ready for it.”

In embracing this Trailblazer Award, Pierson reflects not only his personal achievements but also the innovation, teamwork and relentless drive that define his tenure. As the technological landscape continues to evolve at Texas A&M, his leadership serves as a path for other trailblazers to follow.