At a kickoff party in downtown Sacramento, key stakeholders Thursday launched the Technology Industry Association of California (TechCA), a nonprofit trade association that represents the technology industry of California in interactions with state and local government.

“Our mission is simple, we want to be better partners with government by promoting transparency and open and competitive contracting for companies, and to help modernize digital services for all Californians,” said Jennifer Saha, CEO of TechCA. “California has a tech-savvy new governor, and we need a modern organization that can serve as one voice for the many diverse companies that do business here in the State of California.”

California is one of the few states that does not have its own capitol-based technology industry association. The new organization is based on such models as Washington, Texas, Florida and others that have successfully served the state-based technology community.

TechCA will also serve as a bridge to cities and counties throughout the state.

Led by Saha, industry representatives have already begun to meet with key government officials to gather feedback and consider areas of focus, committees, workshops and targeted programs to help companies become more successful partners.

With a special emphasis on small businesses that have been traditionally underrepresented, TechCA will offer government relations and legislative advocacy services to help the industry speak with one voice. Association dues will be scaled for companies based on revenue and size, allowing for an equal vote and easy access by SB / DVBE- certified companies. Small Business and Disabled Veteran Business Enterprise-certified companies for media)

TechCA is formed as a 501(c)(6) nonprofit trade association and is pending tax-exempt status. The association’s initial steering council will collaborate on governance, committee leadership and a membership program that will open early next year. Additional council members are being sought. Those interested can apply at
Current members include:

Gregg Descheemaeker manages Intel Corporation’s business development activities in the State, Local, and Education markets. In addition to his roles and responsibilities for transformation in the classroom for K-12 and Higher Ed, a primary responsibility for Descheemaeker is to accelerate the adoption of Intel’s next-generation technologies throughout government’s core and edge IT infrastructures. During 20 years at Intel, he has held a variety of roles including Director of Sales for the Americas for Intel Solution Service’s consulting business and California’s Enterprise Account Manager. Descheemaeker has been in the technology industry since 1990, spending much of his career focused on F500 corporate and SLG enterprise data communications and data center infrastructure.

Chad Hodges serves as EVP for Enterprise Networking Solutions, Inc. Hodges has served the tech industry for more than 20 years. His passion for people and technology have meant the successful deployment of many solutions for the State of California government.

Bill Maile serves as the director of government relations at the AGL Association. Previously, he spent five years as editor of Techwire, a technology industry publication he founded in 2011. Before that, he was communications director for the California Technology Agency, one of several positions he held as an appointee in the Schwarzenegger Administration.

Rebecca Morales has spent 15 years in technology sales for State and Local Government in California. She currently serves as Account Executive for ServiceNow. Outside of work, Rebecca has served as the Membership Director for the WITI Sacramento Board, helping grow the network and attract new members to the organization. Morales also served as a Board Member for Foster Youth Education Fund, a nonprofit organization created to generate and disburse education grants to emancipating foster youth.

Jennifer Saha is the founder of Golden Bridge Strategies, a strategic advisory and consulting firm based in Sacramento. She previously served as senior director of public sector for the Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA). She also served 10 years in State government, most recently as deputy director for strategic planning, policy and research at the California Department of General Services. Saha was a gubernatorial appointee under Governors Schwarzenegger and Brown.