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DOD losing one of the best and brightest – Plus the 7 Gov Stories

On GovLoop Insights’ DorobekINSIDER:

  • The past year has been tough for government works, the pay freeze, sequestration and then the dreaded government shutdown, to name just a few. But what made the year even more difficult was the lack of support and thanks given to public workers. The public’s faith in government dropped. Morale sagged. And feds felt like the world didn’t value the work they did on a daily basis. That is why Public Service Recognition Week is so important. We get a preview of the event.

You can find all of our programs online: DorobekINSIDER.com and GovLoop Insights at http://insights.govloop.com.

But up front: DOD losing one of the best and brightest

Robert Carey, the Defense Department’s principal deputy chief information officer, confirmed today what had been rumored: He is retiring after more than 30 years of public service.

Carey, who formerly served as the Navy CIO, is widely respected as a strategic thinker who also got things done.

As for his next steps, Carey said, “I intend to stay focused on improving National Security from another perspective.”

His note to his DOD team:

Teammates – the time has come for me to “take off my pack” and transition to the private sector. On Friday 28 March I will close out my Federal career and retire from public service. As a civilian, I have been in Federal service for over 31 years. Concurrently, I have served in uniform as a Navy Civil Engineer Corps Officer for 25 years. It’s time. It has been a privilege and honor to serve you, the Department and the Nation as I have. While my civilian career was interrupted twice by mobilizations, once for Operation Desert Shield/Storm and then a few years ago by Operation Iraqi Freedom, I considered an honor to be able to wear the cloth of the Nation during a time of crisis.

What can I say about the DoD CIO team? You are a powerful force for the Department. Your strengths are your individual styles, drive, patriotism which produce a combined effect above that which can be delivered by any other nation, and is what makes our armed services the best in the world. Our role in the Information Age is to arm our warfighters with knowledge to support life and death decision making. Stay focused on delivering information technology and cybersecurity results that keep our men and women in harm’s way the best equipped in the world. Remember who you serve: not egos, not budgets, not RMDs, not the press, or the Hill…but warriors serving at the top of the spear in the Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps.

As for me, the next chapter of my career is taking a shape as I intend to stay focused on improving National Security from another perspective…

I wish you all Fair Winds and Following Seas,


Robert J Carey

Principal Deputy Chief Information Officer

US Department of Defense

Also: Competition in the cloud

It was only a matter of time, but there is competition coming to cloud computing — starting in the commercial space, but one has to imagine that it will come to the government world too.

From the Wall Street Journal: Amazon.com finally has some real competition in the enterprise cloud space. Google Tuesday announced a reduced and simplified pricing structure for its Google Cloud Platform service, cutting prices for compute services by around 30% and significantly reducing the cost of storage and cloud-based analytics, according to a company blog post. The cloud is about more than just cost. “Price and performance are fleeting differentiators in the cloud platform market,” blogs Forrester Research Inc. analyst James Staten. But he says that cost management is a pain point in the public cloud, and that Google has greatly simplified this task by building in automatic discounting based on usage. ”It’s a simple and highly compelling value – if you use more, you get a bigger discount, automatically. Hard not to like this value as you can now use more without worrying if you will be hit by the shock bill so many cloud pioneers have faced,” he writes.

The SEVEN stories that impact your life

  1. Washington Post: Secret Service agents on Obama detail sent home from Netherlands after night of drinking – “Three Secret Service agents responsible for protecting President Obama in Amsterdam this week were sent home and put on administrative leave Sunday after going out for a night of drinking, according to three people familiar with the incident. One of the agents was found drunk and passed out in a hotel hallway, the people said. The hotel staff alerted the U.S. Embassy in the Netherlands after finding the unconscious agent Sunday morning, a day before Obama arrived in the country, according to two of the people. The embassy then alerted Secret Service managers on the presidential trip, which included the agency’s director, Julia Pierson, report Carol D. Leonnig and David Nakamura.”

  2. Defense News: US Army Leaders Push for Another BRAC Round – “Senior US Army leadership has doubled down on its support for another round of shuttering and shrinking domestic installations, with Army Secretary John McHugh telling a congressional committee Tuesday morning that the service could save about $1 billion a year by undertaking a new round of Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC.)”

  3. GovExec: OPM Sets Data for Self Plus One Health Coverage – “The coverage option — which will enable federal employees with a spouse and no dependents a new choice when enrolling in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program — was included in the 2013 budget deal. FEHBP currently offers just self-only and family coverage.”

  4. Military Times: Hagel Names “Military Professionalism” Advisor – “Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel has tapped a two-star admiral and former Naval Academy commandant to serve as his “senior adviser for military professionalism,” a newly created position to tackle military ethics problems. The selection of Rear Adm. Margaret “Peg” Klein comes more than a month after Hagel declared military ethics to be a top concern in response to a string of embarrassing incidents involving misconduct in the ranks.”

  5. Federal Times: Bill Would Give Feds a Bigger Raise – “Federal employees would get a 3.3 percent pay raise next year under legislation proposed March 26 by Democratic lawmakers.”

  6. NextGov: IT Grads Rank 14 Agencies as Top Employers – “While federal agencies were not among the top 10 picks, the good news is that many cracked the top 25, with even more making the top 100 ideal employers ranked by computer science grads. Among the top agency picks were NASA (11), National Security Agency (13), FBI (14), CIA (15), Defense Department (22), U.S. Air Force (25) and State Department (29).”

  7. Federal Times: OPM Works to Improve Pension Processing – “The average time to process a new retirement claim was 61 days — down from 91 days in July of 2013 and 156 days in December of 2011.”

DorobekINSIDER water-cooler fodder… yes, we’re trying to help you make your water-cooler time better too…

  • The challenges of management reform FederalTimes oped: Cisco’s Alan Balutis: “I viewed this second term agenda as less of a “refresh” and more of a “rehash.” … I found this “rehash” not troubling, but reassuring. Bringing about change in a bureaucracy as large and complex as our Federal government takes time, leadership, commitment, and continuity. But I was somewhat troubled by the lack of any proposals to reform the way the government acquires, manages and oversees information technology.”

  • Stopping the Next Snowden: The problem isn’t that he could. It’s that he wanted to [Politico Magazine contribution by John A. Irvin, vice chairman and David L. Charney, chairman of NOIR for USA, a non-profit organization dedicated to understanding the psychology of the insider spy] Several high-tech solutions have been proposed to the U.S. government to deal with the problem of insider spying. But the answer may much simpler.

  • Why Likability Matters More at Work: Likability Is More Important—and Harder to Pull Off—on Video [The Wall Street Journal]: “Likability” is becoming a bigger factor for success at work as social networks and videoconferencing grow. The impact goes beyond a high-school popularity contest. The ability to come across as likable is shaping how people are sized up and treated by bosses and co-workers.

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