Cooper, who was appointed by President Bush to be the first CIO of DHS in early 2003, is leaving for personal reasons, said Valerie Smith, DHS assistant press secretary. His replacement has not been named.
Smith praised Cooper's work in integrating multiple IT systems into one DHS-wide system. When Cooper joined DHS, he was assigned responsibility for the IT assets supporting 190,000 federal employees of the 22 agencies that were combined under the newly created DHS.
"As CIO, Steve brought vision and tireless effort to the critical mission of the department. He has been instrumental in standing up the department and building the information technology infrastructure necessary to pursue vigorously the department's mission," Janet Hale, DHS under secretary for management, said in an email statement.
Prior to joining DHS, was CIO at Corning. Prior to Corning, his work included directing IT for Eli Lilly & Company and forming his own consulting organzation.
Cooper is the latest senior official to leave DHS. Earlier this year, Robert Liscouski, who was assistant secretary for infrastructure protection, stepped down to return to the private sector. Lawrence Hale, the Information Analysis and Infrastructure Protection Directorate's deputy director for cybersecurity, also left. Last fall, Amit Yoran, who headed the DHS National Cyber Security Division, resigned.
As reported in SC Magazine in February The DHS received an F grade in cybersecurity in the annual report card for 2004.