OPIC, Mint to hire new CIOs while Navy CBP fill out key IT roles

One of the biggest surprises in the last few months in the federal chief information officer community had to have been the Department of Navy’s decision to basically get rid of its standalone CIO.

The DoN revealed in March it was restructuring the CIO’s role and merging it into a dual-hatted role with the undersecretary of the Navy and chief management officer, in this case Thomas Modly.

The decision seems to deemphasize the notion that the two sea services should operate under one set of IT policies, but also reflects the realities of the different directions the Navy and Marine Corps have taken. The split was noticeable after a 2013 restructuring of what had previously been a single contract for a fully-outsourced Navy-Marine Corps Intranet (NMCI).

A month after this dramatic change, we are receiving a few more details on what this new CIO set up will look like.

Advertisement

Dr. Kelly Fletcher, the acting DoN CIO, wrote a memo April 16 outlining her new role as well as how the new combined organization will work.

Fletcher announced she will be one of four senior executives leading specific efforts. In her case, Fletcher will be in charge of the CMO’s business system rationalization and modernization team.

“The CMO office will be led by four senior executives focusing on business system rationalization and modernization, development of a data strategy, improvement of audit outcomes, and reform initiatives,” Fletcher wrote. “The direct reporting of both the CIO and CMO offices to the under secretary reflects the Department of the Navy’s focus on leveraging information technology to drive rapid business process improvements.”

Fletcher didn’t say who would be the other three SESers leading the other offices.

“Many of the talented and dedicated people currently in the office of the DON CIO will follow their transferred functions to new positions in these organizations,” she wrote.

Fletcher has been acting CIO since August when Rob Foster, the last permanent DoN CIO, left to be the deputy CIO of the National Credit Union Administration.

Details of the Navy’s reorganization highlighted a busy week in the CIO community.

In addition to Fletcher announcing her new role, Sonny Bhagowalia, the former Treasury Department CIO who was unceremoniously moved out of his position in July after more than three years, revealed his new position as deputy assistant commissioner at the Homeland Security Department’s Customs and Border Protection directorate.

As CBP’s deputy CIO,  Bhagowalia, who had been a senior adviser at the Bureau of Fiscal Service, wrote on his LinkedIn bio that he will be overseeing two broad areas: information and data, which includes everything from application programs to security to data management, as well as technology and systems, which includes infrastructure programs, cybersecurity, technology training and network management.

Two other agencies also are looking for CIOs.

The Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC) released an announcement on USAJobs.gov looking for a new CIO. Applications are due April 30.

Bob DeLuca left OPIC in early March after spending two years in the role.

DeLuca joined the General Services Administration in March to implement the day-to-day operations of the Centers of Excellence initiatives.

Similar to OPIC, the U.S. Mint also put out a hiring announcement for a new CIO.

Lauren Buschor had been CIO since January 2014 before leaving in July, according to a Mint spokeswoman.

Buschor now is the CIO at the Bureau of Fiscal Service.

Another interesting job announcement came up on USAJobs.gov from the Defense Information Systems Agency.

DISA is looking to hire a new SES position, the National Background Investigations System executive.

DISA says the person will be “responsible for establishing goals, priorities and measures of effectiveness to ensure that DISA and OPM driven information technology policy and objectives are achieved with regard to the security, standardization, implementation, and sustainment of the National Background Investigations Bureau (NBIB). Additionally, he/she will work closely with OPM in order to provide executive lifecycle management of its enterprise capabilities to support their transformation to net-centricity through adoption and fielding of a more up to date program and an enterprise-focused IT services and capabilities; directs planning for the implementation, operation, and sustainment, of the OPM NBIB information technology infrastructure and services.”

Applications are due April 30.

What’s interesting about this position is the rumor about whether the White House will move almost all of the security clearance processing to the Defense Security Service.

If the administration goes through with this plan, which some say is no longer a realistic option, would DISA continue to run the technology or would DSS take over all aspects of the modernization effort?

Add to that the House Armed Services Committee’s plan to get merge, integrate or even get rid of DISA, and the entire future of the position and effort will something to watch.

With these people on the move, we can’t overlook two long-time federal employees who quietly left.

DISA’s Jessie Showers, the director of the infrastructure directorate, left after 10 years with the agency in March.

As one of Showers last accomplishments, DISA announced last week that the Defense Information Systems Network (DISN) optical transport system now operates at 100 gigabytes per second up from 10 GB. DISA says the next generation optical transport network upgrade project “supports combatant commands with improved infrastructure resiliency, service delivery node resiliency, encryption and transitions critical legacy components to an internet protocol-based Ethernet infrastructure.”

It’s unclear what Showers is doing next in his career.

Randall Conway, the Defense Department’s deputy CIO for information enterprise, retired after 26 years as a uniformed officer and another seven as a civilian employee.

Conway, who left in March, worked on DoD’s implementation of the Joint Information Environment (JIE) and helped lead the move to the cloud.

Conway says on his LinkedIn page that he is an independent consultant, living in Florida.

Read more of the Reporter’s Notebook.