Stenbit has left the building

John Stenbit officially retired March 6 as the military's top information technology official. Stenbit's deputy, Linton Wells II, will serve as acting assistant secretary of Defense for networks and information integration and chief information officer until the Senate confirms Francis Harvey as Stenbit's successor.

The timing of Stenbit's departure had been a topic of considerable speculation after word leaked last fall of his retirement. He reportedly told Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld last May of his intention to leave.

During his tenure, Stenbit shaped the military's evolving network-centric warfare strategy. He oversaw implementation of the Navy Marine Corps Intranet and secured more than $4 billion in additional funding for three key net-centric initiatives: Global Information Grid-Bandwidth Expansion, Horizontal Fusion and the Transformational Communications System.

Stenbit, indeed, has left the building.

Making radio waves

Army Brig. Gen. Mike Mazzucchi received an earful March 5 from a soldier just back from Iraq on the shortcomings of the soldier's intercom radio.

Mazzucchi listened intently on the convention floor at the Association of the U.S. Army's annual winter conference in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., as the soldier rattled off the radio's range and frequency problems. The Army's top communications program official assured the soldier the service would fix the problem.

But the Joint Tactical Radio System's handheld radio will not be ready until next year.

Purple Paige

Speaking of retirement and leaving impressions, Emmett Paige Jr. retired in February after 57 years of service, including a Defense Depart-ment CIO, Army three-star general and Lockheed Martin Information Technology president.

YOU MAY KNOW OF PAIGE'S E-MAIL MESSAGES TYPED IN CAPS. But do you know about his telephone demeanor and notes written in purple ink?

Ask Gene Renzi, president of ManTech International Corp.'s systems group. The retired Army two-star general served as a battalion commander to Paige when he was brigade commander of the 11th Signal Brigade at Fort Huachuca, Ariz.

"We lived near each other," Renzi said. "He'd pick me up at 5:30 every morning. Work was only a couple minutes away. Our offices were 75 yards apart. I'd get a phone call from him at 5:35 chewing me out. 'Your guys are in jail. Get 'em out.' When he calls you, he never says it's him. But you know who it is. And five minutes later, you'd get a note from him written in purple pen. He'd get the military police report before I did. So I worked a deal with the [military police] so I'd get the police report the same time he did. At least I knew what was coming. But he'd still call chewing me out, followed up by a note written in a purple pen…the curse of the purple pen."

Don't blame us

Officials from the Navy News Desk claim that computer viruses some of its online subscribers received last week did not originate from their office.

"Please be aware that these e-mails did not originate from the Naval Media Center or Navy NewsStand," officials said in a statement. "Our IT department is investigating these e-mails and taking whatever steps are possible to prevent future occurrences, but not all such e-mails can be prevented."

NavNews officials said March 16 online distribution would only come from the e-mail account of Stephanie Collins, its editor. But a follow-on message the next day indicated at least three e-mail addresses from which the subscription news service might be delivered.

"We do not know why this discrepancy exists," according to the message.

It doesn't exactly instill confidence in readers when the Navy NewsStand can't pinpoint where its own distribution list originates. n

Intercept something? Send it to [email protected].


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