New CIO starts at USDA

Scott Charbo, a former agribusiness executive, has been designated as the new chief information officer at the Agriculture Department.

Charbo started the new position Aug. 26 and has been serving as the head of the Office of Business and Program Integration in USDA's Farm Service Agency since July. He replaces Ira Hobbs, the deputy CIO who had been the acting CIO for a year and a half.

"Scott Charbo brings a tremendous amount of knowledge and experience in business and information management to the department," USDA Secretary Ann Veneman said in an Aug. 20 release. "His expertise will enhance USDA's implementation of President Bush's e-government initiative to provide simpler, high-quality customer service from the federal government, while reducing the cost of delivering those services."

As the chief information officer, Charbo will oversee more than 4,000 IT professionals and $1.7 billion in physical assets.

Before joining USDA, Charbo held a variety of jobs in the agriculture field.

He previously was president of mPower3 Inc., a ConAgra Foods company that provides information and solutions to the agriculture and food production communities. The company has announced that it will cease services Oct. 1.

Charbo also was director of environmental and regulatory services for Tri-State Delta Chemicals in Memphis, Tenn., which provided access to services and communications relating to crop production, fertilizer and seed, farm credit/loans and farm-related environmental concerns.

He also worked as an extension agent for the University of Florida's Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, where he had regulatory responsibilities for the Agriculture Department in Palm Beach County, Fla.

Charbo holds a bachelor of science degree in biology from the University of Tampa and a master of science degree in plant science from the University of Nevada-Reno.

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