Last month, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner officially made the Department of Innovation and Technology (DoIT) a state agency. Now, Chief of Staff for the DoIT Tyler Clark ‘09 is looking to Redbirds to help fill the agency’s ranks.

Clark is from Mahomet and decided to come to Illinois State after visiting campus while in high school. He originally planned to be a history teacher, but over time, he discovered working in politics was his passion. Clark took on a double major in history and political science because he was, and still is, fascinated by how politics work and how they impact people’s lives.

An Honor’s student, Clark seized an internship opportunity working for a lobbying firm in Washington, D.C., which helped kick off his political career. Clark was appointed to chief of staff for DoIT after originally serving as Governor Rauner’s Senate liaison.

“My experience working with the legislature, working in communications, and getting buy-in from stakeholders is why I believe I was selected for this position,” Clark said.

Clark says that the agency has a lot of work ahead of them to build a strong, unified cybersecurity system for the state. Thankfully, Clark has a major resource for new talent in Illinois State University.

Illinois State’s School of Information Technology launched a cybersecurity major in fall 2017 and Clark has already started the process of creating a pipeline from the University to DoIT. Clark has stayed closely connected to the University and currently serves on the Alumni Association Board of Directors.

“When the major was formed, I made some calls to my contacts at the University to express my interest in what the School of IT was doing,” Clark said.

The result of those calls was DoIT participating in a recruitment fair on campus at Illinois State. Clark says DoIT plans to continue to be involved in similar events on campus.

“One of my goals is to build a pipeline of talent within the state,” Clark said. “I believe Illinois State will be a key component of that because of its close proximity to Springfield, the types of cutting-edge technology jobs we can offer, and the kind of meaningful work we can offer.”

Clarks says that Illinois State is a natural partner for bringing in talent due to the University’s consistent level of excellence. “I truly believe that Illinois State is the best University in the state to get an education,” Clark said. “We are a well-run University that does the right thing and provides an excellent education to our students.”