If the goal is to make the IRS’s interaction with its customers more like the interaction between customers and a credit card company, Terry Milholland seems like the guy to do it. He used to be executive vice president and chief technology officer for Visa International.
IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman recruited Milholland from Visa in 2088 and installed him as IRS’s Chief Technology Officer. Prior to his service at Visa, Milholland was CIO and CTO for Electronic Data Systems Corp., and before that CIO for The Boeing Company. He brought more than 30 years experience to the IRS.
He was hired away from Visa to bring the tax collection into the modern age. So far, it’s right on target.” – Doug Shulman
“CADE 2 was the brainchild of Milholland,” Shulman says. “He was hired away from Visa to bring the tax collection into the modern age. So far, it’s right on target.”
The CADE 2 – the acronym means Customer Account Data Engine — system is speeding up the interaction between taxpayers and the IRS and is looking to the day when almost all of the interaction will be electronic. The CADE 2 system has already made it possible for the IRS to have a daily cycle of analyzing taxpayer forms. It used to be a weekly process.
As the CTO, Milholland is responsible for overseeing the IRS’s 7,000-person organization that maintains the technology systems that process more than 200 million tax returns each year.
James Thompson, a professor at the College of Urban Planning and Public Affairs at the University of Illinois, Chicago, has made a study of the IRS and thinks that Milholland is there because he wants to be, and because he thinks he has something to contribute.
“His qualifications are stellar,” Thompson said. “Why would he take the job? He wanted to serve the country. He could be making 10 times as much in the private sector, I have no doubt.”
Milholland holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from the University of Maryland and a masters degree in computer science from George Washington University.