The U.S. Air Force’s effort launched last year to hasten digital transformation efforts is well under way and features weekly meetings between Air Force business and IT leaders aimed at addressing key challenges in the campaign, an Air Force official said today.

USAF began standing up its data office last June, and it became an official organization in March of this year after receiving its mission directive while continuing to build its foundation in accordance with the OPEN Data Act.

USAF CIO Bill Marion, USAF CMO Rich Lombardi, and USAF CTO Eileen Vidrine meet weekly in efforts to make USAF a ‘Digital Air Force,’ according to Sherri Hanson, Director of Operations for the Office of the Chief Data Officer at USAF, who spoke about the effort at an event organized by the AFCEA D.C. Chapter.

“You’re looking at the transactional-business side, you’re looking at the IT infrastructure side, and you’re looking at the data management as well,” Hanson said, discussing the meetings between the triumvirate.

Those meetings are aimed at overcoming a variety of challenges including: access to data; data analytics tools and a common environment; and the growth of data. Putting together the Air Force’s data platform will help address those challenges, Hanson said.

“Being able to answer…readiness questions is really what’s driving very, very quickly the development of the Air Force data platform,” Hanson said.  Critical to the larger development effort is having data in the cloud with a solid data strategy and data foundation, she said.

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Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith
Jordan Smith is a MeriTalk Senior Technology Reporter covering the intersection of government and technology.