In This Issue

Rhonda Fuss: Executive Director

Marisa Benson: Project Management

Mollie Burrows: Call Center

Alan Cattier: Academic Services

John Ellis: Integration

Karen Jenkins: IT Service Management

Michael Keown: Enterprise Services

Byron Nash: Enterprise Applications

Paul Petersen: Infrastructure

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John Ellis: Integration

Integration is a new functional unit within the next wave organization that brings together existing services like Identity Management, Emory Shared Data, Web Services, and Middleware Support, and adds new capabilities for application development and Q&A. As our vision is to help Emory create the future, one of the design principles of the next wave reorganization is to build capacity for innovation, and that is certainly one of the design principles we had in mind when creating this unit.

John Ellis fly-fishingYou might also see or hear references to this unit as an “Integration Competency Center.” Gartner analysts started writing about competency centers in 2002 (search Gartner for “competency center” and “ICC”); since that time, a variety of competency centers have been deployed in organizations, including “Application Integration” competency centers, which is really the sort of integration that will be the focus of this new unit. As new applications are designed and implemented, there are requirements for application interfaces to receive or distribute data, to authenticate users and, in some cases, other systems, to authorize those users or systems to access the right content. In addition, there are layers of “middleware” in between the host systems and the application, typically a web layer and an underlying application server layer. It has become increasing clear that “middleware” in this broad sense is a common, mission critical part of the infrastructure.

Having multiple resources distributed throughout the organization doing parts of application integration work, sometimes with duplication, is neither cost effective nor efficient. By bringing these skills together we hope to enhance our agility in application deployments and create a more robust, more highly available middleware infrastructure. The standardization and rationalization of our approach to integration will be critical to our success, so good alignment with enterprise architecture and our Chief IT Enterprise Architect, Steve Wheat, will be of the utmost importance as we proceed.

I am proud to serve as the Director of Integration. I came to Emory in November 2003 as co-director of Academic Technologies, primarily focused at that time on research computing. Within my first year, I moved over to technical services, where I've directed a variety of technical and infrastructure supporting teams, including some that are now part of this new unit. I've also been an active participant in identity management and middleware discussions with other institutions and initiatives, including Educause, Internet2, and NMI-Edit.

Prior to coming to Emory, I worked at the University of Memphis as a tenured professor in the Department of Philosophy before moving over to “the dark side” of university administration full-time. There I led a technology committee of department chairs, worked for the Dean of the College of Arts & Sciences, held a variety of positions in central IT, helped launch the FedEx Institute of Technology, and finally worked directly for the Provost on academic technology campus-wide.

I received my PhD in Philosophy from King’s College London and a BA in Philosophy & Greek from UNC-CH. I grew up in North Carolina, mostly in the Wilmington area. In my spare time, I love playing competitive sports (these days, mostly tennis) and spending time outdoors, especially camping and fly-fishing (if you look closely in the photo, you might recognize one of my fishing buddies... hint, he is another UTS Director).