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FCW : October 2016
October 2016 FCW.COM 29 difference.’” Lawrence was put on the company’s Federal Aviation Administration Surface Surveillance Team and tasked with injecting a modern perspective into programs hampered by outdated technology. It quickly became clear that Lawrence had the ability and vision to move projects from concept to reality, Lamoureux said. Lawrence was also assigned to the company’s FAA Runway Incursion Reduction Program, which sought to refine runway safety concepts and deliver innovative surface surveillance technologies to small and midsize airports devoid of such capability. The project has successfully improved system efficiency and safety, especially during low- visibility or high-traffic conditions. Because of the knowledge of airport operations he gained from those projects, Lawrence collaborated on a surface traffic and queue management tool applicable to airports of all sizes and activity levels called Airport Insight. American Airlines has adopted the tool and deployed it at 13 airports nationwide. Coupled with real-time surveillance data, the tool helps airport authorities and airlines run efficient, cost- effective operations. Lamoureaux leans on Lawerence as a top adviser and a secret weapon with clients, saying, “If questions become too technical in nature, I offer the following, ‘If you would like me to get the smart guys in the room, I am happy to do so.’ Brian is that smart guy.” — Chase Gunter Hillary Lewis As both a lawyer and an IT professional, Hillary Lewis is equally comfortable discussing privacy law with the Office of the General Counsel and working with the IT infrastructure team. That rare blend of talents has helped her have an impact on privacy and security at the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General in her first year on the job. The office focuses on protecting the integrity of $1 trillion in federal health care spending, and the agency receives numerous requests for information to support investigative journalists and court cases. Thanks to Lewis’ efforts, a new framework for preserving and accessing important electronic documents has enabled the OIG to more efficiently, accurately and rapidly respond to those types of requests. Lewis also helped revamp security awareness training for the OIG’s 1,600-person nationwide workforce. She personally designed innovative materials and coordinated their distribution to more than 80 locations from Hawaii to Puerto Rico. The eye- catching materials got employees’ attention and helped spread the word about security issues. She complemented those efforts with a series of mock spear-phishing attacks to test employees’ training. Her efforts dramatically shortened the turnaround time for employees’ required cybersecurity and privacy training. More important, the improved training has resulted in fewer security incidents and better protection of sensitive information. And as if that wasn’t enough, Lewis helped the OIG get an authority to operate in a commercial data center, which allows the agency to reduce costs and improve performance while maintaining appropriate security standards. — Mark Rockwell Veretta “Tia” Loftin Tia Loftin made huge strides in promoting the adoption of agile development at the Department of Homeland Security. Using the department’s pioneering Agile Instruction and Guidebook, she developed a successful strategy for deploying that knowledge to all 22 DHS components and offices. The guidebook provides a way to track agile adoption so that coverage gaps can be identified and addressed through instruction and coaching. However, Loftin realized that the jargon associated with agile methodology was creating a roadblock to adoption. IT specialists often stumbled over terms such as “information radiators” and “ceremonies,” which are nothing more exotic than whiteboards and meetings. She decided that DHS could speed understanding and adoption of agile development if it broke down the key strategies into chunks that any IT specialist could understand. To accomplish that, Loftin implemented the concept of “agile building blocks” — 10 pragmatic steps that IT professionals can easily understand and that also help the CIO staff gauge the use of agile practices for major investments at DHS. Her managers say the innovative approach has helped the department expand the use of agile adoption for IT programs. A recent departmentwide survey revealed that 87 percent of major IT investments that included software development were delivering usable functionality within the six-month standard established by the Office of Management and Budget. 1016fcw_012-037.indd 29 10/12/16 10:53 AM
September 30, 2016
November and December 2016