The Defense Information Systems Agency in January 2015 underwent a major reorganization that changed everything from the org charts to the way business is carried out on a day-to-day basis. Just over a year later, they're making some changes again, but these are smaller and focused on personnel, according to DISA officials.
Retirements, professional development and government directives are among the reasons behind a shifting around of job titles and responsibilities, and the which also include the launch of a cyber portfolio and designated manager. That role goes to John Hickey, who recently served as risk management executive and CIO and also previously led mobility efforts at the agency.
Other senior-level moves include adding CIO responsibilities for Dave Bennett, director of the implementation and sustainment center; Brig. Gen. Brian Dravis, focusing on the Pentagon and Joint Information Environment (JIE) technical implementation; Capt. Al Holtslander overseeing cloud, mobility and Defense Enterprise Office System services development; and Jason Martin taking over Windows 10, Everything-Over-IP and DISANet. Jack Wilmer also has moved up to vice director of the development and business center.
"Last year we said, 'we'll make our decisions, and we'll watch to see what happens. And if it's not quite working, well, we will adjust,'" said Tony Montemarano, DISA executive deputy director. "That's what we've done, and we're really excited because we've also moved some lower-level folks around. And it's exciting because we're giving our people a new lease, a fresh start, an opportunity. There's not one pejorative step in this entire thing, it's to open up doors."
One major gap that needed to be addressed was the Office of Management and Budget's launch of the National Background Investigations Bureau (NBIB), for which DISA needed to provide a senior IT leader. Martin Gross will formally assume leadership of the DISA's effort to meet that requirement — "a major undertaking," Montemarano said.
He added that DISA Director Lt. Gen. Alan Lynn is looking to "breathe new life" into executives who have sat in the same chair for a long time — one example being Stuart Timmerman, who will move from leading the Defense Spectrum Organization to serving as vice director of the implementation and sustainment center.
"He's been doing the same thing for roughly eight or nine years, so this was an opportunity to put him in this new role. And now we've moved [former vice director of implementation and sustainment center] Alan Lewis into Mr. Timmerman's previous role — a total change and new environment, to broaden and give some flexibility," Montemarano said. "He doesn't have a lot of spectrum background specifically, but he is an engineer and spectrum is engineering-based. So he's qualified, and we've lined up classes for him. But part of it also is taking him out of his comfort zone and getting him to challenge himself."
The multiple moves are designed to satisfy numerous requirements, Montemarano emphasized.