Emanuel’s Chief Technology Officer Stepping Down

CHICAGO (CBS) — The Emanuel administration’s top technology guru is leaving City Hall in a week, but it’s an amicable separation.

WBBM Newsradio’s Craig Dellimore reports Chief Technology Officer John Tolva – the first person to hold that position at City Hall – is stepping down Nov. 1, after 2 ½ years on the job, and on very good terms.

“Mayor Emanuel and I sort of had an agreement that it would be about a two-year thing. In fact, that if the structural changes weren’t made in two years, we were doing something wrong,” he said.

City Hall's Top Technology Guru Resigning

Tolva has made the city more sure-footed on technology, and he said Chicago has become more attractive to high-tech firms.

“The mayor doesn’t just want to use technology to optimize how we move our garbage trucks around, he wants the city of Chicago to be the place [where] technology firms want to innovate,” he said.

While the public knows about accomplishments like setting up new Wi-Fi service at parks and beaches, Tolva said bigger things are afoot.

“There will be announcements coming up about the wireline connectivity; basically … gigabit fiber connectivity; new options in commercial corridors,” he said.

Tolva was referring to efforts to make affordable broadband Internet service available to Chicacgo residents, and setting up super high-speed network access for businesses in several commercial districts.

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