Exec tapped for Defense CIO

President Bush reached into industry to nominate John Stenbit as Defense Department chief information officer, White House spokesman Ari Fleischer announced Thursday.

Stenbit was an executive vice president for special assignments in TRW's Aerospace and Information Systems business, according to a White House announcement.

He also has served as chairman of the Federal Aviation Administration's Research, Engineering and Development Advisory Committee and has been chairman of the Science and Technology Advisory Panel for the CIA director.

Stenbit worked at the Defense Department for four years, including two years as principal deputy director of telecommunications and command and control systems, according to his TRW biography. He also served as staff specialist for worldwide military command and control systems for the Office of the Secretary of Defense, according to the biography.

Stenbit relieves Linton Wells II, who had served as acting Defense CIO after Art Money left the Pentagon in early April. Stenbit will also serve as acting assistant secretary of Defense for command, control, communications and intelligence, with Wells most likely returning to his previous job as principal deputy.

"With the Bush administration, you're going to see a lot of industry guys" nominated for positions, said Robert Guerra, president of Robert J. Guerra and Associates. "It's a tough transition to make," for those not used to the government or military culture, but Stenbit appears to have a leg up because of his TRW experience, he said.

A member of the National Academy of Engineering, Stenbit holds undergraduate and master's degrees from the California Institute of Technology.

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