Cathy O'Bryan


Cathy O'Bryan is a leader and a lifelong educator, with more than 30 years of experience providing information technology (IT) support and services in academic settings.  Currently, Cathy serves as the director of client support at Indiana University, a multi-campus institution with more than 120,000 students, faculty, and staff. It is her privilege to lead the teams responsible for the university's award-winning support center, call center, knowledge management development, enterprise customer relationship management technologies and IT management services, executive and internal technical support, and IT community partnerships. IU's technical support center provides support to both over 350,000 constituents across IU and Ivy Tech Community Colleges in the state of Indiana, making it among the largest in the nation in higher education. The directors of IT for the Vice President's Office for Research, the School of Public and Environmental Affairs and the School of Engineering and Technology co-report to Cathy as well as their respective deans and vice presidents.  These partnerships provide a unique opportunity for understanding and alignment of IT resources with each units' mission. 

Cathy believes that it is a privilege to serve in education as it nurtures the promise of our future. Her philosophy is firmly rooted in relationship building through listening, open dialogue and servant leadership.  She has served at UW-Madison as Director of User Services. During her 13 years in Madison, O'Bryan oversaw technical product sales and consulting; product management and licensing; help desk and knowledge base, repair, and desktop support; and the university's 17 computer labs. At UW - Madison, Cathy's career progressed from technical training manager to help desk manager to director of user services. 

O'Bryan is a frequent presenter at EDUCAUSE, has been appointed to the Educause Program Board 2014, and elected to a two-year term as a Board Director for ACUTA. Currently, she was appointed a board member of the Center of Excellence for Women in IT at IU.

O'Bryan has received many awards for her commitment to advancing technology in education. They include: 2014: Call Center Week Award (Under 200 employees) runner-up. 2008: Dean of Students Partnership Award, University of Wisconsin - Madison 1998 and 1999: "Innovator of the Year," North Cook County Educational Technology Council 1997: Teacher of the Year, Evans Middle School 1995: Commitment to Customer Service Excellence Award, InterCall, Inc. 1987: Illinois Bell Outstanding Teacher, St. Felicitas School

She began her career as an elementary school computer teacher, and rose through the ranks to become the director of IT/CIO for two K-12 school districts in the Atlanta and Chicago areas. In 1999, O'Bryan made the jump to higher education, joining the University of Wisconsin - Madison's Division of Information Technology. 

EDUCAUSE Publications

  • Central IT Support Services
    • Briefs, Case Studies, Papers, Reports

    This CDS Spotlight focuses on data from the 2012 Core Data Service to better understand how higher education institutions provide central IT support services.

  • Partnersourcing Your IT Service Blueprint
    • Article

    Insourcing and outsourcing are not your only options — there's also partnersourcing, or collaborating with a trusted partner to develop and deliver the best possible support services.

EDUCAUSE Presentations



EDUCAUSE Involvement

  • ECAR-CDS IT Support Services Working Group
    • Member: 2016 - 2019
  • EDUCAUSE 2015 Program Committee
    • Member: 2014 - 2015
  • EDUCAUSE Review Online Reviewers
    • Member: 2013 - 2014
  • Core Data Service Advisory Group
    • Member: 2011 - 2014
  • Constituent Group Leaders
    • Member: 2010 - 2014
  • Midwest Regional Conference 2009 Program Committee
    • Member: 2008 - 2009