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Aaron Weis, Department of the Navy CIO, Named to 2021 Wash100 for Driving Cloud IT Modernization, Cyber Defense Approach

Executive Mosaic is honored to announce that Aaron Weis, chief information officer at the Department of the Navy, has been recognized as a 2021 Wash100 Award recipient for implementing initiatives to update information technology processes and security practices at the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps.

This marks Weis’ second consecutive Wash100 recognition. Weis has managed IT budget, national security system investments and cybersecurity for the two service branches since his appointment to the DON CIO post in Sept. 2019. He received his 2020 Wash100 Award for his guiding principles to drive DON’s information technology and cyber readiness goals.

“Best known for his skills of strategy and cross functional team leadership, Navy CIO Aaron Weiss has distinguished himself for his ability to lead both technology and cybersecurity capabilities across both the Navy and Marine Corp., said Jim Garrettson, CEO of Executive Mosaic and founder of the Wash100 Award.

To continue his efforts, Weis released the DON Information Security Vision document outlining the department’s plans to modernize its enterprise infrastructure, innovate processes through the use of emerging technology and implement an active monitoring approach to defend its network against cybersecurity threats.

“The vision provides the direction that will help us develop and deliver the capabilities enabling the DON to work more effectively, efficiently and securely at the speed of mission,” he said last year.

Weis has also spearheaded new goals to drive cloud transformation. At the WEST 2020 event, Weis urged the Navy to pursue a cloud adoption project that would help the service branch simplify IT processes and to build a world-class capability to stay ahead of adversaries.

He told C4ISRNET in a June interview the sea service reviewed its risk management framework and piloted an identity management and access platform that could operate with a cloud-based enterprise resource planning system.

Weis then issued a memo in late August regarding the establishment of single-tenant Microsoft 365 cloud services for the Navy and the Marine Corps as DON sought to implement a common identity, credentialing and access management strategy.

“Single tenancy reduces cost and complexity, enables effective command and control, and increases the efficiency of federation management with external DON tenants,” the memo stated.

In early Sept. 2020, Weis said during the National Defense Industrial Association-hosted Navy Gold Coast Small Business Procurement Event the department could shed legacy infrastructure as its components deploy Office 365 applications broadly.

Weis also noted at FedScoop’s Cloud Together Summit in mid-October that the coronavirus pandemic prompted the Navy to rethink its cyber defense approach and shift toward using zero trust architecture to better protect networks.

DON announced in Dec. 2020 that it will conduct a Naval IT Infrastructure Portfolio Review covering enterprise infrastructure, software development, data and analytics and digital workplace as part of efforts to increase accountability and transparency for how the Navy and the Marine Corps use their more than $4 billion annual IT budget.

“The purpose of the review is to identify potential courses of action to improve the value produced by the substantial annual IT spend in order to reinvest in IT priorities and return funds to the broader DON,” according to a Dec. 9 memo signed by Weis with other senior Navy and USMC leaders.

The CIO vowed to ensure that the department would continue to pursue new capabilities and not return to its pre-pandemic tech approach. “Now that we know that we can fly, you know, we don’t settle for ground travel,” Weis recently told C4ISRNET.

Executive Mosaic congratulates Aaron Weis and the Department of the Navy team for their selection to receive the 2021 Wash100 Award. Weis’ strong leadership and innovative solutions have cemented his footprint in the government contracting (GovCon) sector and driven modernization across the federal government.

About The Wash100

This year represents our eighth annual Wash100 Award selection. The Wash100 is the premier group of private and public sector leaders selected by Executive Mosaic’s organizational and editorial leadership as the most influential leaders in the GovCon sector. These leaders demonstrate skills in leadership, innovation, achievement and vision.

Visit the Wash100 site to learn about the other 99 winners of the 2021 Wash100 Award. On the site, you can submit your 10 votes for the GovCon executives of consequence that you believe will have the most significant impact in 2021.

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