Barbara Cohn

Chief Data Officer

Colorado DOT

Barbara Cohn is the Chief Data Officer at the Colorado Department of Transportation. A leader in Open Data, one of CDO Magazine's Global Data Power Women, and an expert in public policy, Barbara has held multiple leadership roles in state and local government. Barbara operates at the intersection of business, data, policy, technology, and people - challenging entrenched thinking, inspiring new interpretations and innovative solutions.

Barbara previously served as New York State’s first Chief Data Officer. In 2016, Barbara was recognized as one of Government Technology Magazine’s Top 25 Doers, Dreamers, & Drivers. She has an extensive background in advancing the utilization of data as a strategic asset with the objective of turning raw data into actionable knowledge; fostering creative and cooperative problem solving; developing robust analytical capabilities to maximize business insight; establishing governance policies and standards; and facilitating data interoperability. As New York State CDO, Barbara was the chief architect of New York State’s acclaimed open data portal, Open NY, and principal drafter of the NYS Open Data Handbook and the NYS Dataset Submission Guide.

Prior to serving as NYS Chief Data Officer, Barbara worked for NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg where she advanced implementation of HHS Connect, a cutting-edge data sharing initiative breaking down information silos to optimize client care and outcomes. HHS Connect transformed the delivery of health and human services by providing a holistic/client centric approach to the delivery of care. Barbara is the author of the Law Journal article, Data Governance: A Quality Imperative in the Era of Big Data, Open Data, and Beyond (Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, Winter 2015), and co-author of Legal Issues for Integrated Delivery Systems (IDS) Use: Finding a Way Forward, Univ. of Pennsylvania, Actionable Intelligence for Social Policy, Expert Panel Report, 2017.