Growing up in rural Alaska I was surrounded by opportunities to explore; I was truly free. This environment encouraged me to make decisions at a very early ageI was allowed to test boundaries and experience consequences. To illustrate how different the world is today I often tell a story about my parents selling our family car, a Beige 1978 Volvo 240DL.

My parents purchased the car brandnew, put the key in the ignition, and drove it from Anchorage to Girdwood. Years passed and, when it was time to sell the car, we cleaned it out and got it ready for the new owner. The car had only one issue that cleaning couldn’t fix. We tried to remove the ignition key for the new owner, but it wouldn’t come out of the key slot. It had never been removed before, as the car had never been locked. The same is true of the doors on our house, shed, and the garage. This worked for us, so we saw no reason to change; it was our standard.

Keeping with the status quo, however, isn’t always the best approach when taking on new challenges. It’s easy, and safe, to stick with the tried and true, but in doing so we could be neglecting opportunities to realize more creative and efficient ways of reaching our goals.

Fast forward to 2018, I am the founder and CEO of an agile software company in Tacoma, WA. AIRLIFT Software is a platform for quickly building and deploying secure custom applications for the public sector. The platform is designed to be highlyscalable and incredibly flexible so that we can freely address a wide variety of business use cases and data transactions.

Six examples of how AIRLIFT is being used today:

  • Automates distribution and collection of marijuana business licensing forms
  • Collects data for creating and verifying medical patient identification cards
  • Simplifies electronic signature of approved city ordinances and resolutions
  • Eliminates the paper processing costs for collecting and processing student information
  • Provides a free tool for planning stages of life for a family member with disabilities
  • Manages submission and tracking of public disclosure requests for agency records

Recently we had the opportunity to demonstrate a prototype application to replace the aging paperbased process for registering firearms transfers and concealed pistol licenses. We had functional requirements to meet, but we also had the freedom to be innovative in our approach.

I believe this is what is missing in many government technology projects, and, in part, is due to legacy systems, process controls, andto a large degree, procurement laws. We believe that a shift in thinking can produce better results at a lower cost. We are always looking for opportunities to think freely and reimagine how software can be simple for users while still maintaining required functionality and security.

Responding to public records requests under the freedom of information act or local state laws is time-consuming and expensive. Together the political ecosystem, engaged citizens, and new legislation is making it imperative for public records officers to find ways to help them respond accurately, work efficiently, and maintain compliance with State laws.

AIRLIFT Respond is a software solution for public records request management. Its functionality helps records officers streamline the process, stay organized, and mitigate risk.

AIRLIFT Respond is available today: please visit to learn more and schedule a demonstration for a closer look at the future of Public Records.

In January of 2016 cloudPWR began working with the State of Washington Department of Health. We were given a very short timeframe to deliver one of the States highest priority technology projects. Because the project had a major public impact and a deadline written in law there was oversight from the Governor and the State CIO’s offices.

With a project this big, a short six months to deliver and a modest budget there was a high risk it wouldn’t get done. We did the improbable and always believed we would. We have a wicked smart team that remained dedicated to the many technical details, maintained constant client communication and shouldered a determination to complete the project no matter what. I would like to thank the entire cloudPWR team that worked tirelessly to meet the deadline, exceed expectations and push AIRLIFT to new heights.

The application is often referred to in the press as a Database, and while it is true that our platform has a database the product is far more. The application is fully integrated with the State of Washington’s single sign-on authentication service, Secure Access Washington (SAW). We also utilized our proprietary workflow, forms, custom pages and service bus architecture to provide a seamless and customized experience for each distinct user community.

As part of the process of delivering this project we also complete a formal SOC 2 Type 2 Audit and had an independent company complete a full cyber-security vulnerability and penetration testing audit of our entire platform. These are exciting times for the company and we are looking forward to working with more agencies throughout the United States to modernize, integrate and replace legacy software applications.

Microsoft will be releasing a video series focused on preparing your organization for Enterprise Content Management with SharePoint. Creating the course material and recording the videos in Redmond was really fun, it was great working with Chris Riley again. The studio was really cool and the equipment was impressive. The course will be posted on edX soon and will be promoted at upcoming conferences.


In the course you will learn about the importance of creating a solid Information Architecture, how to develop a well formed project plan and the importance of the implementation team.

Special thanks to Christina Singletary for coordination and also Tony Frink for helping with editing the slide decks. Also if your into DevOps Make sure to check out Chris’s company 

We are working on a new cloudPWR website for 2016. The new site will bring AIRLIFT front and center. Since it was founded in 2011 the company has achieved the goal of providing cloud solutions and web apps that users love. These products are being used by thousands of Public Sector employees throughout Washington State.


This site as been updated to show the basic look and feel. What do you think? Just hashtag #OldLook or #NewLook with a comment on Twitter or Facebook.