Cris Downey of Rotary: Providing philanthropy via technology

Cris Downey, Director of Technology of Rotary International, talks tech and progress at the largest philanthropic grassroots organisation in the world

Cris Downey is the director of technology services at Rotary International, the oldest and potentially largest, most far-reaching grassroots service organisation in the world. He joined Rotary in November of 2019, after spending 18 years working in healthcare and pharma in the northern suburbs of Chicago. 

“After having various roles and working on several projects up there, I was looking for a change,” he says. “I wanted to move out of the corporate world and  be able to give back, to do something more as part of the community.” 

The technology services team that Downey heads encompasses traditional infrastructure technologies, which include things like datacentre, network, server storage, as well as their cloud and online tech, and collaboration technologies. For those cloud technologies, Downey tells us that Rotary uses Azure and Office 365. 

Also included in the tech services organisation are enterprise IT security – which includes security analysts, incident response and overall security awareness – and an operations team that's responsible for the run portions of the organisation, as well as the platform operations.  These platform operations cover the company’s network server and storage, in addition to the application operations, which controls the next-level application support for their critical enterprise technologies, their DevOps, and change management. 

Big tools for a big organisation, with a big vision.

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