Government Technology

Roy Mentkow: Technology Director Keeps Roanoke, Va., on the Cutting Edge



March 19, 2009 By

"Technology provides a service, and if it's effective, it's a right fit for your organization and it changes the way you do business, obviously, for the better," said Roy Mentkow, director of technology for Roanoke, Va.

With this outlook, Roanoke has been shaped into a technology leader, earning the title of Top Digital City six out of the last eight years for the 75,000 to 124,999 population category in the Center for Digital Government's Digital Cities survey.

Mentkow has been in the IT industry since 1981 and before that worked in every industry imaginable, he said. His first job with Roanoke was in public safety as a team lead, when Mentkow discovered he enjoyed providing a service more than making a profit.

Mentkow looks for creative and cost-effective IT solutions. When high gas prices in 2008 prompted more commuters to use the city bus system, the technology department added free Wi-Fi to two buses for around $100. He saw this as a moment of inspiration to aid the public.

"I always have the same goal -- and it's never-ending -- and that is to transform our environment with the effective use of technology," he said.

Other initiatives include a community Web portal, which contains a real estate and neighborhood search function. And it extends as a mobile portal, letting citizens access information from smartphones or laptops.

"The most important thing we believe here as a technology department, is that we're not in the technology business," Mentkow said. "We honestly, as a unit, accept that we are in the customer-service business. Our expertise is in technology, but we are here to service customers. We're problem-solvers."


| More

You May Also Like

Comments

Felix T. Kelley    |    Commented 5 Days Ago

We need someone like Mr Mentkow down here in Peachtree City, Georgia. Someone both I/T competent and caring about the people they serve. Our city website is a backlevel nightmare and down for maintence as often as it is available. Too many sub-contractors and nobody home at the helm IMO. Ring,ring - Hello, Mr Mentkow?


Add Your Comment

You are solely responsible for the content of your comments. We reserve the right to remove comments that are considered profane, vulgar, obscene, factually inaccurate, off-topic, or considered a personal attack.

In Our Library

White Papers | Exclusives Reports | Webinar Archives | Best Practices and Case Studies
Fresh Ideas In Online Security for Public Safety Organizations
Lesley Carhart, Senior Information Security Specialist at Motorola Solutions, knows that online and computer security are more challenging than ever. Personal smartphones, removable devices like USB storage drives, and social media have a significant impact on security. In “Fresh Ideas in Online Security for Public Safely Organizations,” Lesley provides recommendations to improve your online security against threats from social networks, removable devices, weak passwords and digital photos.
Meeting Constituents Where They Are With Dynamic, Real-Time Mobile Engagement
Leveraging the proven and open Kofax Mobile Capture Platform, organizations can rapidly integrate powerful mobile engagement solutions across the spectrum of mobile image capture, mobile data capture and complete mobile process integration. Kofax differentiates itself by extending capture to mobility, supporting multiple points of constituent engagement. Kofax solutions dynamically orchestrate the user’s mobile experience from a single platform—reducing time to market, improving process perf
Public Safety 2019
Motorola conducted an industry survey on the latest trends in public safety communications. The results provide an outlook of what technology is in store for your agency in the next five years. Download the results to gain this valuable insight.
View All

Featured Papers