The Department of Defense (DoD) has hired Michael Conlin as its first chief data officer (CDO). According to his LinkedIn profile, Conlin started in his new position in July.

While Conlin has had a long career in the private sector, he also has significant experience working with the public sector. He most recently served as vice president and chief technology officer for defense at Perspecta. Prior to that, he served as CTO for U.S. public sector for DXC Technology and chief technologist for Hewlett Packard Enterprise–U.S. Public Sector.

While Conlin is the Pentagon’s first CDO, he isn’t the first to hold this position in the military. The Army created its data office in 2009, which is currently headed by Thomas Sasala. The Air Force appointed Maj. Gen. Kim Crider as its first CDO in 2017.

“The biggest challenge the public sector has in maximizing data is making the data available in the first place,” he said in a 2017 interview with ExecutiveBiz.

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Kate Polit
Kate Polit
Kate Polit is MeriTalk's Assistant Copy & Production Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.