Nikhil J. Deshpande is Chief Digital Officer for the state of Georgia. He heads the Office of Digital Services (DSGa) under the Georgia Technology Authority.
Nikhil envisioned and led Georgia’s user centric digital transition to an enterprise open source web-publishing platform. Under his direction, Georgia became the first state in the United States to use enterprise Drupal and meet special needs of constituents with a range of disabilities affecting vision, hearing, motion and cognition making the platform Section 508 and WCAG 2.0 AA compliant.
Nikhil strongly advocated and set the framework for the use of social media for Georgia, back when using social media for government was not common. He established a presence for the state on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter to quickly address citizens’ questions and concerns.
Prior to his career in digital government, Nikhil worked in advertising and digital media.
Nikhil has two master’s degrees in Visual Communications and Interaction Design from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay (IITB) and the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD). He served as adjunct faculty at the Atlanta campus of SCAD for ten years, where he taught graduate classes in Interaction Design and User Experience.
Nikhil has won several national and international awards and recognition for his work in digital government. He was recently honored with Atlanta’s 40 under 40; an award recognizing 40 accomplished individuals under the age of 40.
Connect with Nikhil on Twitter or LinkedIn @nikofthehill