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FCW Insider: April 15, 2021

Pentagon officials debut innovation steering group

The new group is tasked with looking for areas in research and engineering that, if improved, would make the Defense Department better at adapting new technology.

Nakasone deflects senators' invitations to seek domestic spying powers

Lawmakers have continued to prod the NSA chief to request new surveillance authorities that might prevent another SolarWinds-type breach.

Now hiring for next set of Presidential Innovation Fellows

Originally a brainchild of the Obama-Biden tech office, the Presidential Innovation Fellows program is now looking for its eighth cohort of in-house federal tech innovators. How has it changed, and what lessons might the program offer for recruiting top tech talent into the government?

Quick Hits

*** The Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs favorably reported the nomination of Jason Miller, President Joe Biden's nominee for the Office of Management and Budget's deputy director for management, to the Senate Floor on Wednesday. Miller worked as an economic advisor during the Obama administration.

"Mr. Miller has an extensive track record of tackling difficult, management challenges and driving innovation both in government and in the private sector," HSGAC chairman Sen. Gary Peters (D-Mich.) said during the markup. The committee also voted to advance Biden's nominee for the administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Deanne Criswell.

If confirmed, Miller will play a critical role in the president's management agenda, an priority-setting document for government-wide modernization.

*** A group of senators reintroduced a bill on Tuesday that they say will help grow the federal cybersecurity workforce, a segment of employees the government has chronically struggled to recruit and retain.

The bill, which passed the Senate unanimously in the last Congress, would create a civilian rotational program for cyber workers at federal agencies. Proponents say that this type of opportunity would help the government compete in a tight market with industry alternatives that can often provide higher salaries and more benefits.

Homeland Security and Government Affairs Chairman Peters introduced the bill along with Sens. John Hoeven (R-N.D.) and Jacky Rosen (D-Nev.).

“Recent breaches of our federal cyber infrastructure, which compromised national security, show that our government needs an integrated federal cyber workforce that has the knowledge and skills to counter increasingly sophisticated threats,” Peters said of the bill.

*** Artificial intelligence leaders from the Defense Innovation Unit, General Services Administration, National Institute of Standards and Technology and Department of Agriculture will present at FCW's April 21 AI Workshop. See the full agenda and register here.

Posted by FCW Staff on Apr 15, 2021 at 2:35 AM


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