Sherman leaving ODNI, joining DoD as next deputy CIO

John Sherman, the chief information officer for the intelligence community, is leaving after two-and-a-half years, but he isn’t going far.

Sherman is joining the Defense Department to be its principal deputy CIO, replacing Essye Miller, who is retiring in June.

“It’s been an honor to work at ODNI and lead the efforts to modernize the IC information technology environment. All of our progress is a testament to the unified effort and team work of the CIOs across the community. Together with the IC CIO team we have set a strong foundation for the future,” Sherman said in a statement. “I look forward to assisting DoD CIO, Dana Deasy, and the Department of Defense with its ongoing digital modernization.”

John Sherman, the chief information officer for the intelligence community, is moving to a new role in DoD in June.

Sherman joined as the IC CIO in September 2017 and has led the IT modernization effort into what he called Epoch 2 of the IC IT Enterprise (ICITE). He came to the IC from the CIA, where he was the deputy director of its open-source enterprise. In that role, Sherman helped to incorporate open source intelligence and capabilities into the ICITE.

Under the new thinking for ICITE, Sherman expanded the use of cloud services across the IC, adding access to Microsoft’s Azure along with the C2S effort under Amazon Web Services.

In a May 2018 interview, Sherman said, “One of the things I’ve got clear guidance on is we will always be looking for new technologies, new industry capabilities on cloud computing,” Sherman said. “One of the priorities we have in the IC is to move to artificial intelligence and machine learning, and this cloud computing foundation is absolutely critical in getting us there.”

He also revamped ICITE to address other short comings, particularly making the shift from hardware and software to better data management.

More recently, Sherman has been behind the expansion of the IC cloud effort through a new strategy that consolidated nearly 300 priorities from 17 different agencies into one document.

Under his watch, the CIA’s commercial cloud enterprise (C2E) initiative continues to move down the acquisition path.

Essye Miller, the principal deputy DoD chief information officer, is retiring in June after 35 years of federal service.

Sherman has spent his entire 20-plus year career in the intelligence community, first working as a satellite imagery analyst and manager and working as a duty officer in the White House situation room. He also worked in several senior executive positions at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) in areas of analysis, collection, homeland security, agency transformation, and foreign partnerships. Additionally, Sherman served as the principal deputy national intelligence officer for military issues on the National Intelligence Council.

As for Miller, she leaves DoD after almost 35 years of federal service. She joined the Air Force as an IT specialist at Gunter Air Force Base in 1985 and worked her way up to becoming a member of the Senior Executive Service and earning a Presidential Rank Award as a meritorious recipient in 2018.

Miller served in several high ranking technology positions during her career, including as acting DoD CIO, deputy CIO for cybersecurity for DoD and director of cybersecurity for the Army CIO/G-6.

Most recently, Miller has been leading DoD’s technology effort to ensure employees can telework and the network can handle the surge.