Headshot of Ann Crawford
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Ann Crawford

UCSB’s outstanding women in IT

Industries like information technology have historically excluded women, but gender diversity across the University of California and on the UC Santa Barbara campus has led to immense growth and success in higher education technology initiatives.

In recognition of women’s contributions to the field of information technology (IT), six UCSB IT professionals have been nominated for UC Women in Technology’s annual systemwide honor. 

“We’re fortunate to have so many incredible women in the UCSB IT community that are deserving of this recognition,” said Josh Bright, associate vice chancellor for IT and chief information officer. “Each of this year’s nominees make important contributions each day that inspire innovation, shape our culture, and drive our success.”

Timed to Women’s History Month, the UC Women in Technology committee annually asks each campus to select one female IT staff member to be recognized for their contributions. From an array of talented staff on campus, and the professional rigor of the nominees, the Office of the Chief Information Officer selected Ann Crawford, a database developer in Information Technology Services (ITS)’ Data Services (DS) and Business Intelligence (BI) unit for the top honor. 

Crawford was chosen, in part, for how she embraces new skills and technology implemented at UCSB while encouraging others to adopt them as well.

“Her support and patience were crucial in my journey from a novice to a proficient Microsoft Power BI developer,” said Tedi Tehrani, director of finance, administration, and personnel for ITS. “Under her guidance, I acquired essential skills and crafted dashboards that enhanced reporting efficiency. She's committed to uplifting fellow women in tech.”

Crawford’s innovative spirit has been at the forefront of campus data architecture developments, from implementing Python for data integrations and promoting CI/CD pipelines to embracing new software such as Snowflake and Power BI, her colleagues noted. She has actively promoted the use of data across several areas of UCSB, working with campus users to develop data reporting solutions for the COVID-19 pandemic, financial systems, student information and more.

Marrying innovation and understanding, Crawford embraces new technology and asks questions that give colleagues an opportunity to gain a broader understanding of the topic. In addition to being a highly accomplished data professional, she has an innate ability to foster collaboration. 

UCSB also nominated Alejandra Orozco, Elise Meyer, S. Krystal McCauley, Rebecca Carroll and Tedi Tehrani for their accomplishments. 

Orozco has played a major role in Administrative and Residential IT’s end user support group, overseeing departmental Google platform migrations, collaborating with UCSB Police Department on security initiatives, and implementing the campus VPN to Administrative Services users. 

Meyer, director of IT strategy and academic/research support, has worked at UCSB for 35 years  during which time she  has demonstrated an exemplary commitment to service excellence.

McCauley manages over 15 student workers as the ITS service desk supervisor. Her leadership helps develop students’ confidence in the workplace and gifts them invaluable experience in the technology field. 

Carroll, a technical project manager in ITS’ Program Management Office, has successfully managed and supported several identity and access management and information assurance projects, including the campus active directory, Zoom phone implementation and multi-factor authentication deployment. She is a champion for IT community initiatives as a UCSB representative on the UC Womxn In Tech council and the manager of UCSB's IT Internship Program.

Tehrani, director of finance, administration and personnel, was an integral part of the recent formation of ITS, managing the human resources actions, budget consolidation and space transformation for the integration of two critical units. 

All six nominees, Bright said, have been instrumental to the success of campus technology and embody the knowledge, strength, leadership and diversity of the many outstanding women contributing to IT — at UCSB and across the entire UC system.

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