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Digital Modernization

DOD’s New Chief Digital and AI Office Achieves Full Operating Capability

Full operating capability

DOD’s New Chief Digital and AI Office Achieves Full Operating Capability

The Department of Defense’s new Chief Digital and Artificial Intelligence Office has met its deadline of achieving full operating capability by June 1.

According to a CDAO spokesperson, the office has also finished merging the organizations of the DOD chief information officer, Defense Digital Service, Joint Artificial Intelligence Center and the Advana big data platform, FedScoop reported Wednesday.

Legacy component names will no longer be recognized or used unless attributed to a product or capability specific to the department,” the spokesperson said in a statement.

CDAO was established as part of the DOD’s effort to maintain the speed and scale it needs to preserve its military advantage, Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks, a two-time Wash100 winner, said in a memorandum published in February

The CDAO spokesperson told FedScoop that the office aims to achieve full administrative alignment of personnel and resources by Oct. 1.

The Pentagon recently hired a slate of technology professionals to fill in leadership roles in the new organization. 

Craig Martell, best known for his work on machine learning at ride-sharing company Lyft, was appointed as the first permanent chief digital and AI officer.

DOD Chief Information Officer John Sherman, a speaker at a past Potomac Officers Club event and a 2022 Wash100 winner, had held the role in an acting capacity prior to Martell’s appointment.

In March, the DOD named Margaret Palmieri as the deputy chief of the office. She previously served in the U.S. Navy, where she is credited with improving the use of advanced analytics, computing resources and networks.

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