Communities organizations, cities and companies must work every day to truly achieve the big picture of creating smart cities. Our goal of transforming existing infrastructure to create innovative, resourceful urban areas is a project that will span generations.

I spoke about this vision as a panelist on the Voice America Business Channel’s radio show on the future of smart cities. I joined Steve Sarnecki, the vice president of public sector at OSIsoft, and Lisa D’Alesandro, vice president for SAP’s regulated industries industry value advisory practice, for a special edition of Voice America’s, “Coffee Break with Game-Changers.”

The program by Voice America, the worldwide leader in live internet talk radio, provides a refreshing hour of business talk. This episode was a part of a special series featuring game-changing technologies.

To kick off the show, we were each asked to bring a quote and explain how it applies to the development of smart cities. I selected a quote from Nick Saban, head football coach at University of Alabama, who has led teams to multiple national titles: “Success doesn’t come from pie-in-the-sky thinking. It’s the result of consciously doing something each day that will add to your overall excellence.”

This quotation best embodies my approach to smart cities since the biggest key in achieving a smart city is having a plan and executing it. Smart city initiatives around the world need to be more than just hype, so I really like Nick’s thinking about a plan and then chipping away at that each and every day.

I’m passionate about this big plan to create smart cities and I want to leave the world a better place for the next generation. So, let’s do something every day to chip away at the goal of someday waking up having built a city that will transform people’s lives.

Listen to a recording of the show to hear the full show.

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Russ Vanos
Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Global Software, Services and Smart Cities - Itron
Russell E. Vanos was named vice president of sales and marketing for global software, services and smart cities in November 2015. In this role, Vanos is leading Itron's global software and services teams to enable true solution selling in collaboration with Itron's Electricity, Gas and Water business lines. He is also integral to the Internet of Things and smart cities initiatives for the company.

Vanos joined Itron in 1980 and has held various positions in sales, marketing and operations. Most recently, Vanos served as Itron's senior vice president of business development. Previously, Vanos served as Itron's vice president of marketing until 2011 and vice president and general manager, sales and marketing for energy until 2010.

Vanos is on the board of the Washington State University Energy Innovation Center and Envision Charlotte, is a member of Edison Electric Institute (EEI), sits on the Cisco Internet of Things Steering Committee, and is a founding member of the Smart Cities Council.