PEO EIS staff gathered virtually June 15 to bid farewell to Deputy Program Executive Officer (DPEO) Brendan Burke. Burke was recognized for his many years of Army civilian service — the bulk of which was spent at PEO EIS — as he departs government service to transition to a career in the private sector.
An Air Force Academy graduate and former commissioned Air Force officer, Burke began his civilian career as a contracting officer for the Army Communications-Electronics Command at Fort Monmouth, New Jersey. In 2008, he joined PEO EIS’s Computer Hardware, Enterprise Software and Solutions (CHESS) as a program management specialist. He went on to become deputy project director and later project director of CHESS; product director for the General Fund Enterprise Business System Increment II; and product manager for the Installation Information Infrastructure Modernization Program. In 2018, he became the acting DPEO at PEO EIS and the following year was promoted to the Senior Executive Service and named as the permanent DPEO.
During the virtual event — which was held at PEO EIS headquarters and livestreamed to over 290 attendees — Program Executive Officer Ross Guckert lauded Burke for his contributions to the organization’s network modernization efforts and talent management initiatives.
“Our success is dependent on placing the right people in the right place at the right time to ensure our networks and business systems support Soldiers wherever they operate,” said Guckert. “Brendan has done just that,” he added, citing Burke’s hiring and training of a new cohort of deputy project managers, and his implementation of a Human Resources Board of Directors.
Guckert presented Burke with the Superior Civilian Service Medal for his exemplary performance while serving as DPEO — specifically for his contributions to the Army’s improved cyber resiliency, leveraging of cloud technologies to field IT capabilities, growing and mentoring of the PEO EIS workforce, and keeping EIS on track in meeting critical mission commitments during the COVID-19 pandemic.
During his parting remarks, Burke said it was bittersweet to close three important milestones and chapters of his career — his tenure as DPEO, as a PEO EIS team member and as a Department of the Army civilian.
“For me, it’s a lot about the people I’ve met along the way,” said Burke. “I’ve been blessed to be surrounded by such a great cast of people.”
Many of those past and present teammates had the opportunity to share memories and tributes to Burke toward the end of the event. As Lee James, project director for PEO EIS’s Enterprise Services, aptly summed up Burke’s departure: “We’re going to feel this one for a long time.”
John Howell, PEO EIS’s assistant program executive officer for networks, cyber and services, will step up to serve as acting DPEO until a permanent replacement is named.