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Army CIO/G-6 cites irreversible momentum for Army network in her farewell message

Oct. 4, 2013
 

After approximately 42 years in the Army, CIO/G-6 LTG Susan Lawrence is retiring. This is her final message to her staff, taken verbatim from the CIO/G-6 website.

“When I stepped into the CIO/G-6 position, I knew I would be in for one of the most challenging jobs I’d ever had. What I didn’t know is that it would also be one of the most rewarding. Together, we have created what I sincerely hope will be irreversible momentum in modernizing our Army and leveraging technology to keep us the most capable force in the world.

“During my first few months here, as a team we got the Secretary of the Army and Chief of Staff of the Army to designate the network a top modernization priority and to see the benefits of an enterprise approach to IT acquisition and management. Since then, we have built an unbreakable foundation that will carry the Army forward for at least the next decade.

“When the SecArmy tasked us to consolidate the Army’s data center inventory in late 2010, we thought there were approximately 250 data centers. Today we have identified more than 800 data processing locations. As of September, the Army had completed more than 70 percent of the 185 targeted data center closures, and identified more than 1,800 applications for retirement. This effort will reap more than $29 million in cost savings.

“In February, the SecArmy released the Information Technology Management Reform (ITMR) implementation plan to modernize the network, with a goal of achieving $1.5 billion in annual savings beginning in fiscal year 2015. The plan was developed by a collaborative team led by CIO/G-6 and ASA(ALT). Through ITMR, the Army finally will be able to manage IT and the network as a portfolio, improving visibility of our assets, increasing efficiency and facilitating better IT/network decision making.

“We also recently implemented the Network Mission Area (NMA), an end-to-end portfolio management approach to optimize network capability investments. Over the past several months, representatives from 31 organizations across the Army developed the NMA framework, which uses an annualized repeatable process linking network imperatives from the Army Campaign Plan to IT capability development through the Program, Planning, Budgeting and Execution System.

“We are doing this right — synchronizing across the Warfighting Mission Area (managed by G-3/5/7) and the Business Mission Area (coordinated by the Office of Business Transformation), and providing active governance.

“Through the Army Request for Information Technology (ARFIT) process, we are making great strides in increasing the visibility of IT expenditures, improving compliance with Army IT policies and generating significant cost savings in the maintenance and operation of the Army’s IT infrastructure. The ARFIT policy framework was completed with the publication of two SecArmy memoranda in 2013 directing implementation and reforming the waiver policy for IT procurement.

“This summer, the Army finished the bulk of its migration to DoD Enterprise Email, one of our highest priority IT initiatives and greatest achievements. More than 1.43 million NIPRNet users and 115,000 SIPRNet users can now access their email securely from anywhere in the world at any time. Enterprise Email greatly improves operational effectiveness, security and efficiency. Together, we accomplished all of this and MUCH, MUCH more!

“On 18 September, I out-briefed the SecArmy and Army Staff on our successes and the irreversible momentum we achieved. The SecArmy praised our efforts and expressed his appreciation for your hard work. The bottom line is that, because of your commitment to excellence and steadfast determination despite sequestration, furloughs and budget constraints, we have an affordable, sustainable network that is secure and effective.

“As the Army draws down forces and faces more fiscal uncertainty, you must remain focused. The Army’s mandate is to maintain its expeditionary capability as part of a joint force. For the Signal community, that means continuing to improve network effectiveness and security, and doing so in a financially sound way. The Army needs your help to keep moving forward and to continue making a difference in the lives of Soldiers across the Army every day.

“One critical task is locking in the way ahead for standing up the Cyber Protection Teams (CPTs). We must execute this to standard — it is a no-fail mission. It will take the entire team to achieve this goal. To ensure success, we need to identify the right talent and, as individuals are selected, your support to allow them to transition to the CPTs. Our relevancy depends on getting the CPTs into the force quickly and smoothly.

“I am extremely proud to have served with every Soldier, Civilian and Contractor who collectively make up the CIO/G6. I’m equally proud of what we have accomplished and the promise of achievements yet to come. Our unity as a family has strengthened the organization and made us strong.

“ Mr. Krieger, CW5 Pina, SGM McCrary and I thank each one of you in advance for your unwavering support and service to our Nation. And I wish everyone of you the very best; I will miss you all! Warmest Regards, LTG Susan Lawrence”

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