Don Upson

Former Secretary of Technology, Commonwealth of Virginia

As Virginia’s former secretary of technology, Don Upson was one of the nation’s first cabinet level officers whose job was to oversee the development of electronic government. Appointed by former Gov. Jim Gilmore in 1998, Upson’s authority over IT underscored the vital role technology would play in the delivery of government services and in the evolution of the state’s governance model. Under his leadership, Virginia became an international model for its e-Communities Initiative. Thanks to Don Upson, Virginia became the Silicon Valley of the East.

Enabling the government to be more technologically efficient and operate on the cutting edge to save valuable tax dollars, resources, time and human lives is in Don’s DNA. Don Upson doesn’t just understand key decision makers; elected, appointed and career civil service…he was and is one of them. Those in positions of authority – on both sides of the commercial and government world – count Don as a close confidant, trusted advisor and loyal friend. Thirty years of relationships with those at the highest level of government in the most strategic positions across agencies and Capitol Hill.

From 2002 to 2009 Upson built a successful marketing firm, ICG Government, where he served as president and founder.  Don served as Senior Vice President of PRC Inc, an $800 million company specializing in complex government technology solutions and applications. Don managed business development for civilian markets and built an industry-leading marketing strategy that supported the company’s growth and eventual acquisition by Litton Industries.  Don served in senior positions on Capitol Hill from 1977 to 1992, ending with a six-year stint as staff director of the House Government Operations committee: the investigative arm of the House of Representatives. He was a principal staff leader involved with a range of investigations and legislative initiatives that included the Inspector General Act, the Chief Financial Officers Act, the Paperwork Reduction Act, the Procurement Integrity Act, others.   Don is a recognized subject matter expert on government management and acquisition and is a frequent speaker at national and international forums on these subjects.

He is a seven time recipient of the Federal 100 honoring the top 100 industry and government leaders in government technology, received an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Marymount University and numerous other recognitions.