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Army CIO Is a Yes Man

Newly appointed Army Chief Information Officer Leonel Garciga does not allow policy to hinder meeting his goals.

On what marked the 30th day in his new role, recently appointed U.S. Army Chief Information Officer (CIO) Leonel Garciga took center stage at TechNet Augusta 2023 to discuss his priorities and beliefs. 

It’s day two of the annual event in Augusta, Georgia, August 15-17. 

Reiterating last year’s remarks, the CIO says his principle remains the same: in every decision, ask yourself if it’s risk and/or/versus compliance. “It’s always that balance,” Garciga continued, highlighting the importance of staying threat-informed in decision-making. 

Remaining true to his beliefs, Garciga is not one to say that cloud capabilities are a one-stop-shop. “Focus on cloud where it makes sense; don’t take things that should never be in the cloud and put them there. That’s not a good idea; everyone fails when they do that.” 










Speaking on Enterprise Mission Assurance Support Service, the Army representative says he prefers hearing about how the latest data is being pulled from systems. All necessary telemetry and analytics can help answer questions and recognize threats, he explained. 

The Army has made great strides in strategizing modernization efforts, Garciga began, noting current implementation initiatives across the board. 

The speed at which changes are implemented creates opportunity for discipline in delivering capabilities.  

“As we look at this next stage of solidifying the foundation that we’ve laid and moving it forward, it’s really going to be about getting some discipline on how we deliver across the board,” he said. 

However, one must not mistake discipline for bureaucracy, Garciga explained. “This is about slimming down bureaucracy and getting a lot better at delivering.” Having extensive experience in policy interpretation, Garciga prides himself on being a “bureaucracy hacker.” 


Newly appointed Army Chief Information Officer Leonel Garciga speaks at TechNet Augusta 2023.

Fundamentally, the speaker does not believe that the Army is facing such challenges, however. Similarly, he says, many folks are in current critical positions not allowing outdated policies and practices to hold them back. 

"I still haven’t found this mythical thing that says, ‘Nope, you can’t do that,’ because every policy has an ETP,” Garciga said, explaining the commonly unnoticed exception to policy. 

Furthermore, the Army needs to be more self-reflective, he added. Differences in interpretation and expectation are what may hinder mission success. 

“[We are] masters of our own destiny,” Garciga concluded.