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California Department of Food and Agriculture

Media Contacts: Steve Lyle, CDFA Public Affairs (916) 654-0462 or,

California Department of Food and Agriculture
Release #09-036
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SACRAMENTO, May 18, 2009 – Davood Ghods has been named the recipient of California’s 2009 Award for Vision and Innovation in Government for his work in the field of information technology (IT).

Ghods is the Agency Information Officer for the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

“It has been said that farmers are mankind’s original innovators,” said CDFA Secretary A.G. Kawamura, “so it’s fitting that Davood would receive California’s 2009 Award for Vision and Innovation.  His approach to information technology is every bit as energetic, creative and thorough as the farmers and ranchers he serves.  Congratulations to Davood on this tremendous honor.”

California Chief Information Officer Teri Takai presented the award to Ghods in recognition of his outstanding public stewardship, noting that he has guided his department through a period in which the information technology functions of several independent branches were consolidated and streamlined to achieve both long-term cost savings and improvements in services to farmers, ranchers and consumers.

The award is presented annually to outstanding public stewards who exhibit leadership within their agency and in the state’s information technology community; who inspire public servants around them to rise above the norm; and who guide the state toward innovative IT solutions.

Davood Ghods joined CDFA in 2006 as its Agency Information Officer (AIO).  On his own initiative, Davood brought CDFA executives and stakeholders together to form an IT Governance Council that worked collaboratively to develop an IT Governance Process that provides a consistent and predictable method for moving project concepts through the initiation and approval processes.
Davood’s work has given the department the means to identify and track its various IT projects, even as they are managed using a variety of tools and methodologies.  Davood led the effort to align CDFA’s IT Governance Process with industry best practices. As a result, CDFA is recognized both locally and nationally as a leader in California state government for IT governance and project and portfolio management.

To achieve its mission to promote and protect California agriculture—a nearly $37 billion industry—the department relies on information technology to provide the infrastructure and technological means that enable its employees to function effectively in the field and to collaborate with colleagues in industry, science and academia.


The California Department of Food and Agriculture protects and promotes California’s agricultural industry. California’s farmers and ranchers produce a safe, secure supply of food, fiber and shelter; marketed fairly for all Californians; and produced with responsible environmental stewardship.


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California Department of Food and Agriculture Office of Public Affairs
1220 N St., Ste. 214, Sacramento, CA 95814