The Potomac Officers Club hosted the third installment of its Data-Driven 2021 Series, The Cost of AI, on Tuesday, which brought together public and private sector leaders to discuss how federal government agencies must plan for budget changes, potential technology disruptions and strategy shifts as they work to integrate innovative artificial intelligence solutions and accelerate digital modernization initiatives.
After an opening keynote address delivered by DARPA’s Dr. Timothy Grayson and a lively panel discussion featuring key industry and government officials, Major General Matthew Easley, director of cybersecurity and chief information security officer for the U.S. Department of the Army, closed the event with an insightful keynote speech.
The event’s moderator, Josh Wilson of LMI, introduced MG Easley, whose address focused on the Department of Defense’s strategies, priorities and challenges as agencies work to scale their AI capabilities and technologies to meet the mission demands of today’s evolving defense landscape.
MG Easley opened his keynote speech by outlining some of the most significant problems facing defense agencies and military branches as they strive to implement AI-enabled technology at an enterprise level.
“Trying to navigate the scores of different organizational networks we have in the army today is a challenge,” he shared. “But if we can move data directly from an endpoint, through whatever transport means we have available, into a cloud environment, it really makes life easier.”
Cloud transformation and AI innovation efforts, MG Easley noted, are already underway for the U.S. Army. To elaborate, the CIO shared that one of his key achievements over the past year was authorizing the deployment of the Army AI Innovation Institute’s artificial intelligence/machine learning development pipeline onto the Army’s cloud environment.
Additionally, MG Easley highlighted the importance of resilient cellular networks, and the support commercial sector innovations can offer, as a critical component of the Army’s AI technology on civilian devices.
He said that as the Army continues to roll out 5G capabilities across more and more bases and branch locations, the boosted network will also support mission-critical inference engines and give the military greater operational synergy.
Another central theme of MG Easley’s keynote address was “educating the enterprise” in an effort to elevate the Army’s capabilities not only through its engineers and scientists, but for every soldier in the workforce.
“We have to educate our general officers,” MG Easley stated. “We educate our new recruits as they come into the military, because everyone is involved with data.”
He added that the phrase “every soldier as a sensor” has now transitioned to “every soldier as a data curator” to align with the Army’s shift in focus to digital transformation and modernization.
To hear Major General Easley’s full keynote speech, including an exploration of the Army’s latest successes and modernization initiatives, visit PotomacOfficersClub.com, where you can watch The Cost of AI and other GovCon events on-demand.
The Potomac Officers Club’s next event is the platform’s AF IT Modernization and Digital Transformation Forum on Dec. 15, during which prominent U.S. Air Force and commercial sector officials will gather to explore how zero trust principles, artificial intelligence and JADC2 initiatives can accelerate the modernization of legacy infrastructures for the Air and Space Forces as they elevate their capabilities to prepare for the battlespace of the future.
Deputy Chief Information Officer for the Department of the Air Force, Winston Beauchamp, will deliver a keynote address for the forum to share how the Air Force is driving digital transformation efforts to retain its competitive advantage and secure the nation against global adversaries.
Visit PotomacOfficersClub.com to register for the platform’s AF IT Modernization and Digital Transformation Forum on December 15th.