Fields tapped as DISA's first CIO

The Defense Information Systems Agency appointed Shirley L. Fields as its first chief information officer. Fields most recently served as head of DISA's Defense Information Infrastructure Hardware/Software Department.

In her new role, Fields intends to bring to DISA a much greater focus on performance measurement and other facets of the Information Technology Management Reform Act of 1996, which mandated the CIO position.

"We have done a lot in the past in the area of performance measurement [but] not to the extent we are going to be doing it now," she said.

One of the roles of the CIO is to advance the mission of the agency through the use of information technology wherever it can "add value," Fields said. She will coordinate her work with the Pentagon and the assistant secretary of Defense for command, control, communications and intelligence.

Fields also looks forward to exchanging ideas with other agency CIOs.

"I will be working closely with other strategic leaders throughout government, and I am going to be challenging traditional approaches and coming up with new methods" of information management, she said.

Over the past several years Fields has championed initiatives to improve how the Defense Department tracks and distributes its computers. At the same time, she has helped put unneeded DOD computer equipment into schools and universities that do need it, managing DISA's Education Institutions Partnership Program and a number of other education-oriented programs.

Fields previously oversaw DOD's Defense Automation Resources Information Center and served as chief of the Systems and Procedures Division in the Defense Logistics Agency Defense Supply Center.

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