Tambellini Group Spotlight


Leaders from the University of Miami and Montgomery County Community College Take Top Honors in the 2023 Annual Tambellini Technology Leadership Awards

Irvington, Virginia – March 15, 2023Two institutions with a knack for cultivating home-grown talent through elevating existing team members and hiring recent graduates won the 8th annual Tambellini Technology Leadership Awards for their remarkable successes in streamlining and enhancing the user experience for their campus communities.

Brad Rohrer, the CIO for the University of Miami, won the 2023 CIO Award, and the Enterprise CRM team at Montgomery County Community College in Pennsylvania, led by Mary Beaver, Director of Enterprise Software Systems, earned the Innovative Team Award.

“Both the University of Miami and Montgomery County Community College are inspiring examples of dedication and resourcefulness to get the job done,” said Vicki Tambellini, CEO and Founder of Tambellini Group.

“Technology teams in many industries are being challenged in the current work environment, but the leaders at these two institutions succeeded by investing in the growth and development of their teams.” 

As the world’s leading independent technology research and advisory firm dedicated solely to higher education, Tambellini Group created the Technology Leadership Awards to celebrate IT teams and leaders for their excellence in driving transformative modernization efforts.

CIO Award Winner: Brad Rohrer, University of Miami

Ever since Brad Rohrer started as a network specialist at the University of Miami in 1997, his career at the institution has progressed and evolved as swiftly as the many cutting-edge technology initiatives he has led during his 25 years of service.

“I’m honored and happy to win this award, but I’m also humbled,” said Rohrer. “None of what I’ve been able to do would have been possible without such a talented and dedicated IT team. This tremendous recognition is a testament to their hard work and accomplishments.”

In his combined 12 years as deputy CIO and CIO, Rohrer has focused on elevating the customer experience and supporting the career growth and development of his approximately 260-person team. Some recent highlights include:

  • Career development program:  Established defined curriculums, assessments, and designated mentors for current team members to acquire new skills and experience aligned with current and future staffing needs.
  • Team reorganization: Rohrer restructured the IT team into five key focus areas for greater alignment with institutional priorities. While involving 24 percent of existing staff, this change did not impact service delivery and reduced total staff operation costs without displacing any team members.
  • Improved faculty services: Faculty researchers benefit from a new online hub with IT-related services available by request, including individual consultations to support their budgeting and planning needs for research projects.
  • Enhanced student experience: Revamping a time-consuming process for collecting new student ID photos is just one of many ways the IT team has improved the student experience through automation.

Innovative Technology Team Award: Montgomery County Community College

As director of MCCC’s Enterprise Software Systems, Mary Beaver faced a dilemma common among leaders charged with evaluating CRM options: should her team buy a ready-made platform or build their own?

While spending on the former would be the easier solution, Beaver and two members of her six-person- team (four of whom are MCCC alumni) decided to take the more ambitious route and build a customized system using the Microsoft Dynamics platform to serve their community’s unique needs.

“It was such a huge undertaking, and sometimes we felt really alone on this journey because we didn’t have a lot of peers who took on a project of this magnitude,” said Beaver. “I am so very proud of our CRM team, which includes two MCCC alumni. Winning this award validates their commitment and success in making the student experience better every day.”

Before building their own CRM system, attempts to manage student support inquiries through shared email inboxes spread over various departments had been inefficient, frustrating, and nearly impossible to track. The pandemic compounded this challenge, along with issues related to coordinating institutional communications with students.

Beaver’s team has dramatically improved student case management and automated communications, even meeting their stretch goals ahead of their deadline:

  • Streamlined Processes: Migrated case management for Enrollment Services, Records and Registration, Parking, Student Services Resource Center, and Information Technology teams to the CRM platform, with plans for expanding capabilities to the President’s office and beyond.
  • Quicker Results: Processed and resolved 16,000 cases.
  • Data Transparency and Reporting: Development of dashboards to monitor case numbers and status from inception to completion, along with data collection and analysis capabilities to track outcomes and improve efficiencies.
  • Communications Improvement: Student communications journeys for retention, success, engagement, and completion are in development, including integration of the Signal Vine SMS platform and Pathify web portal.
About the Tambellini Group

Tambellini Group is the leading independent technology research, analyst, and advisory firm dedicated exclusively to higher education. Tambellini Group members benefit from more than 100 annual and unbiased research reports that provide insight and analysis on the changing technology landscape. With nearly 5 million data points, including over 20,500 global institutions and more than 100,000 technology selections, the Tambellini Group’s proprietary Education Institution Technology Profile Database® is unparalleled in the industry. Founded in 2001, Tambellini Group is a woman-owned business and a certified Great Places to Work® company.

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