Homeland Security CTO Holcomb to retire

Lee Holcomb, the Homeland Security Department's longtime chief technology officer, yesterday informed federal CIOs via a memo that he plans to retire from the federal government June 30, the department said.

Holcomb wrote that he was considering employment options in the private sector, and that he planned to continue working in the federal IT arena.

Holcomb came to the homeland security technology organization from his job as CIO of NASA in mid-2002. His homeland security assignment at that time was planned for a detail of six months to a year.

His many tasks at the DHS CIO organization have included leading the design of the department's enterprise architecture.

As a graduate of the California Institute of Technology and a longtime technology manager at NASA, he brought technical and analytical strengths to the CIO office.

Among the awards Holcomb has received for his work as a federal technologist is the Association for Federal Information Resources Management's highest honor, the executive leadership award.

Holcomb praised the federal officials and others he has met and worked with during his career that stretches back to the 1970s.

'During the past three years, the DHS CIO team has achieved much,' Holcomb said in his farewell memo. 'The DHS enterprise architecture began with a blank sheet of paper three years ago and just received a green evaluation from [Office of Management and the Budget] for the state of our Enterprise Architecture and in the use of this EA to transform DHS.'

'The 22 plus component networks and e-mail systems have been integrated into a virtual DHS system,' Holcomb continued. 'The classified Homeland Secure Data Network was created and is now operational not only for DHS, but for other federal agencies.

'The DHS Infrastructure Transformation Program is taking the next step in creating a single DHS infrastructure,' he added. 'Finally, DHS is taking positive steps to rationalize the over 700 systems that make up the more than 20 IT portfolios that provide common services and capabilities for DHS missions and functional offices,' Holcomb wrote.

Holcomb went on to cite and praise the members of NASA, DHS and governmentwide technology projects he has worked on, including:
  • The Voyager Spacecraft Team
  • The International Space Station Technology Program
  • The High Performance Computing and Communications Program
  • The High-Speed Civil Transport Program
  • The NASA CIO Team
  • The Federal CIO Council
  • The Outsource Desktop Initiative NASA (ODIN) Program
  • The President's Y2K Council
  • The White House Office of Homeland Security CIO Team
  • The Department of Homeland Security Office of the CIO Team.

The department has not yet announced a successor for Holcomb.

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