Editor's note: Now NASA's Chief Information Officer (CIO) position is open at NASA HQ. But hurry up folks - once again it looks like NASA wants to slip this crucially important position under the Transition Team's nose in stealth mode between Thanksgiving and Christmas. The position is open 20 Nov - 4 Dec. That's 5 working days (2 already gone) and then 2 days for a weekend before Thanksgiving. 1 day is lost on Thanksgiving itself, another lost on the Friday afterwards and then 2 more on the weekend. That leaves 4 days before the position closes at COB 4 Dec 2008.
In reality, only 9 working days are being offered by NASA to announce and then gather applications for one of the more critical positions for an agency poised on the cusp of 21st century innovation and exploration in an ever more networked world.
We've all been wondering when Jonathan Pettus would gather up things to bring with him and engineer his return to MSFC (where critical agency IT systems have no back up power supplies).
Given the critical responsibilities of this position (below), wouldn't it be exercising plain old common sense to allow the incoming Obama team to make this selection? Mike Griffin does not seem to think so. Indeed, to allow such a critical position to be filled in this hectic manner is simply irresponsible on Mike Griffin's part.
The NASA Chief Information Officer (CIO) is responsible for providing vision, leadership and advice in the development of information resource management (IRM) strategies; for ensuring the establishment of cost effective policies, programs and frameworks that develop and implement IRM and information technology (IT) programs and initiatives in areas supporting agency priorities; and for ensuring that agency IRM, IT, and IT security activities are conducted in accordance with strategic, program/project management, and capital planning and investment processes aligned and integrated with agency priorities. Specifically, the incumbent:
-Establishes the agency strategy for information resources and technology, including establishing goals for meeting the Agency's needs, improving the efficiency and effectiveness of NASA operations through the application of information technology, and ensuring that NASA's IT systems are planned, acquired and operated consistent with federal policies, procedures and legislation. Establishes and executes an IT capital investment and control process that provides NASA with an integrated approach to managing IT investments throughout their life-cycle, ensuring alignment with NASA's mission enterprise architecture, and business needs. Ensures the development of a NASA enterprise architecture that meets the needs of the agency and complies with external requirements.
-Establishes processes and controls to ensure CIO programs and initiatives are integrated to meet established goals and are executed in the most effective and efficient manner.
-Establish and implement the policy and program framework for information technology security in NASA; continually evaluate and improve effectiveness to address internally and externally identified vulnerabilities and risks.
-Evaluates, acquires, configures, and uses software intended to ensure that automated systems are secure from unauthorized use, viral infection, and other problems that would compromise sensitive information in terms of confidentiality, integrity, and availability, or would compromise other aspects of overall system security.
-As a senior expert in the field of information technology (IT) security, provides authoritative advice and guidance related to the agency IT security program. Serves as senior expert and consultant to top agency management officials for advice on integrating IT programs with other key mission-critical agency programs.
-Interfaces with external entities involving CIO related matters of administration, legislative, public, industry and academia relations or interests. Ensures appropriate coordination and response to external audits and/or assessments conducted by the General accounting Office, the Office of the Inspector General, and others.