Half of CFO Act Agencies Make CDO Appointment Deadline

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The July 13 deadline for all Federal agencies to install a Chief Data Officer (CDO) has come and gone. Among the 24 CFO Act agencies, half have named a CDO and the other 12 appear to still be working on it.

The CDO appointments are required for all agencies by the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act, which also requires the appointment of evaluation officials and statistical officials at agencies. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) will establish a CDO Council, and agencies will need to send officials to Evidence Act training in September.

A senior administration official told MeriTalk that agencies will need to post their CDO appointments publicly on their websites by August 2, and a formal list should emerge from the CDO Council meeting in September.

Since the bill was signed into law on Jan. 14, several agencies have put in place a CDO, or shifted responsibilities of the CDO to the agency’s CIO. Others, however, do not have CDOs listed within the agency organizational structure, or still intend to name one.

MeriTalk compiled a list of CFO Act agency CDOs, using an existing list from OMB and outreach to agencies without a listed CDO.

First, the roll-call of CFO Act agencies with named CDOs that don’t carry other titles:

  • Department of Agriculture: Ted Kaouck;
  • Department of Defense: Michael Conlin;
  • Department of Energy: Pamela Isom;
  • Department of Health and Human Services: Mona Siddiqui;
  • Department of Transportation: Daniel Morgan;
  • Department of Veterans Affairs: Dat Tran;
  • General Services Administration: Kris Rowley;
  • Nuclear Regulatory Commission: Arthur Smith; and
  • S. Agency for International Development: Brandon Pustejovsky.

Second, agencies adding titles to existing senior officials, or working on interim status:

  • Department of Justice, where CIO Joe Klimavicz also carries the CDO title;
  • National Science Foundation, where CIO Dorothy Aronson will also handle CDO duties; and
  • Department of Homeland Security, which has named Donna Roy, executive director of the Information Sharing and Services Office, interim CDO.

Third, agencies that said they are still working on it:

  • State Department, where a spokesperson said, “We are excited to bring on a Chief Data Officer as quickly as possible. However, we have nothing to announce at this time.”
  • Social Security Administration, which told MeriTalk it is working on getting a CDO, but didn’t have a name to share at this time;
  • Department of Education, which said it has established the CDO position and hopes to have someone in the role within the next 30 days;
  • NASA, which noted it has a chief data scientist and associate CIO for the transformation and data division, but not a CDO yet; and
  • Office of Personnel Management, which told MeriTalk that it notified OMB of its plans to name a CDO by July 13 and will make the appointee public by August 2

And finally, agencies which did not respond to inquiries by publication, and for which no CDO announcement can be found:

  • Department of Commerce;
  • Department of Housing and Urban Development;
  • Department of Labor;
  • Department of the Interior;
  • Department of the Treasury;
  • Environmental Protection Agency; and
  • Small Business Administration.

In addition to the CFO Act agencies, OMB’s list also includes several other agencies with CDOs in place:

  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration: Ed Kearns;
  • S. Census Bureau: Zach Whitman;
  • HHS Office of the Inspector General: Caryl Brzymialkiewicz;
  • S. Citizenship and Immigration Services: Matthew Graviss;

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