PEO Perspective May 2015
Late last month, Secretary Carter unveiled a trio of announcements that will change the way we do business for the better. In quick succession, he unveiled the DOD’s new cyber strategy, announced the establishment of a permanent office in Silicon Valley, and introduced plans for the Department to invest in promising technology through venture capital. For PEO EIS as IT acquisition professionals, these new initiatives are fantastic news, pushing forward one of our key goals of embracing new technology early to fulfill our mission of enabling information dominance.
The DOD’s updated Cyber Strategy will help us better implement cyber defense solutions coordinated across not just the Army, but the entire Department. Cyber security is the biggest threat to our IT systems – whether business systems or weapons systems – and through the cyber strategy, we’ll be working to defend our networks, systems and information; defend our homeland and national interests against potentially crippling cyber attacks; and provide integrated cyber capabilities to support military operations. Together with our Army and DOD partners and stakeholders, we are aggressively defending our networks and protecting Soldiers, citizens and the Nation’s critical infrastructure.
The new unit in Silicon Valley, Defense Innovation Unit X, is focused on another one of our key goals: industry partnership. We often talk about the criticality of two-way communication with industry – understanding what we need, when as what technology is already out there and where the market is headed is essential to mission success, but does not happen as much as it should. DOD recognizes this challenge and is taking steps to combat it with this new unit working to understand what innovations are out there and serving as a liaison between the DOD and the tech industry. I appreciate this critical need, and we are taking steps through information exchanges, speaking engagements and social media to improve our industry engagement.
In concert with the new unit in Silicon Valley, the DOD will begin looking at areas in which to make some venture capital investments. Helping identify key technologies that could have helpful defense applications and then supporting that innovation through targeted investments will bring the best capabilities to our Soldiers in the field.
I also want to take a moment to recognize some important observations taking place this month: Military Appreciation month, National Asian Pacific Heritage Month, and May 3-9 is Public Service Recognition Week. Please join me in honoring those who are serving throughout the world and those who have served before them. Many have paid the ultimate price for our Nation’s freedoms. May God bless the men and women serving in harm’s way and deliver them home safely to us.
This month we’ll also be paying tribute to the generations of Asian and Pacific Islanders who have enriched America’s history and are instrumental in its future success. Asian Americans have made significant and lasting contributions to our fighting force throughout America’s history, and we will be profiling some of these stories through our social media presence.
Finally, the first week in May marks Public Service Recognition Week, honoring the men and women who serve as federal, state, county and local government employees. PEO EIS will celebrate the contributions of our dedicated public servants during this week.
I wish you all a safe and happy Memorial Day, look forward to innovative ways to embrace new technology and hope to see you at our events around town soon!