Lamar Gardere is Executive Director. Lamar is responsible for guiding The Data Center’s mission of democratizing actionable data, ensuring quality standards, and the continued impact of the organization. He leads The Data Center’s ongoing efforts to transform local culture to one that embraces data as an intrinsic component of sound decisionmaking and serves as its chief advocate for technology designed to enable greater data sharing and advanced statistical methods in New Orleans.
Lamar joined The Data Center after six years with the City of New Orleans Office of Information Technology and Innovation, most recently as the Chief Information Officer. As CIO, he was responsible for delivering stable, value-added IT services to City of New Orleans employees and constituents – a task accomplished through development of sustainable, forward looking strategies for growth, and expansion of IT services. Lamar is nationally recognized for his work implementing and developing the open data policy for the City of New Orleans. This work facilitated release and upkeep of many of the City’s most valuable datasets and led to the development of extensive data sharing resources, now available through the City of New Orleans’ Open Data portal.
In the years directly preceding his service with the City of New Orleans, Lamar owned and operated a manufacturing business where he gained an appreciation for maximizing budgets, responding to market pressures, and managing teams of people towards more efficient operations. Earlier years were spent as a research scientist with Georgia Tech and with Intel Corporation’s research division, developing solutions for the challenges associated with an increasingly mobile, connected and computationally rich society.
Lamar’s previous work provides him with a solid understanding of the importance of rigorous and highly credible data analysis to enable decisionmakers to set priorities and develop strategies. A New Orleans native, Lamar earned a Master of Science in Computer Science degree, with concentrations in Ubiquitous Computing, Networking and Graphics, from the Georgia Institute of Technology. He also holds a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science degree from Xavier University of Louisiana.