NYC’s Chief Technology Officer Minerva Tantoco hailed as ‘exceptional’ role model for women in innovation

‘NYC and tech community can work together to improve people’s lives.’

‘NYC and tech community can work together to improve people’s lives.’

Minerva Tantoco was recently appointed as Chief Technology Officer (CTO), a historic first for New York City.

“Minerva is an experienced technologist with vision and technical expertise to make New York City the number one center for tech and innovation in the country, and I am thrilled to have her join my administration,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said in a statement.

As CTO, Tantoco directs the Mayor’s Office of Technology and Innovation, under First Deputy Mayor Anthony Shorris, with responsibility for the development and implementation of a coordinated citywide strategy on technology and innovation and encouraging collaboration across agencies and with the wider New York City technology ecosystem.

Raised in Flushing, Queens, the Philippine-born Tantoco is a product of New York City public schools. She attended Bronx Science High School and while still in college, moved to Silicon Valley where she co-founded technology startup, Manageware Inc., which was successfully sold five years later. She lives in Greenwich Village and has one daughter.

For more than 25 years – from launching her own start-up to directing technology and innovation for large enterprises – Tantoco has worked to affect business transformation across a range of industries from advertising to finance. She brings this wealth of experience in technology-enabled transformation to government in joining the de Blasio administration, says the statement.

“Our City’s digital infrastructure should reflect the 21st century innovation hub we want New York City to be. With the appointment of Minerva Tantoco as the City’s first Chief Technology Officer, we are moving one major step towards the creation of a modern government that connects City agencies to the best ideas and brightest people to streamline the delivery of government services, and increase transparency,” said De Blasio.

Tantoco said she has dedicated her career to “creating and deploying forward-thinking, innovative technology.”

“There is a great opportunity in New York City for government and the tech community to work together to challenge the status quo and improve people’s lives,” she said.

One of the city officials who welcomed Tantoco’s appointment is Council Member Ben Kallos.

He said, “With Minerva Tantoco in the historic role of Chief Technology Officer, New York City will continue to grow as one of the most creative, well-run and thriving 21st century cities. Minerva will bring the same innovation to New York City as she has brought to major corporations like UBS as well as agile start-ups…I look forward to working with Minerva, and watching her inspire the next generation of young men and women to pursue careers in science, technology, engineering and math.”

In a 2013 interview with, Tantoco said there should be more women in technology, and gave credit to her mother as her role model.

“My most important female role model has to be my mother, who studied to be a chemical engineer and then became a COBOL programmer in her 40s when the kids left for college,” she said.

She said “women techies” are becoming increasingly important in a technology-driven world. “So much of our lives and the engine of the modern economy are based on technology, it is very empowering for women not only to participate but drive those forces of change,” she said.

“Minerva will be an exceptional leader and partner in tapping into the power of technology to benefit all New Yorkers. She has been an advocate for women and innovation throughout her career, and will continue to be a role model and trailblazer in her new role.” said Jessica Lawrence, executive director of NY Tech Meetup.

Tantoco currently holds four U.S. patents in artificial intelligence and workflow systems, and is a speaker and author on mobile, security, big data, and innovation.

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