AF chief data officer: Data is the future of the force

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Rusty Frank
  • Secretary of the Air Force Public Affairs
Founded in summer 2017, the Chief Data Office remains focused on unleashing the value of data across the Air Force.

The Chief Data Office was established to fill a critical role for the Air Force: to harness data and operationalize it so Airmen everywhere have access to data to make data-driven decisions.

“All of our mission areas rely on data,” said Maj. Gen. Kim Crider, Air Force chief data officer. “As the CDO (chief data officer), it’s my job to help our enterprise answer questions, solve problems and find opportunities to leverage our data to deliver on the Secretary of the Air Force and Air Force Chief of Staff priorities.”

Crider was announced as chief data officer by CSAF Gen. David L. Goldfein during the Air Force Association Air Warfare Symposium in September 2017. Having served the Air Force in various IT roles for more than 20 years at every major command it was a role Crider fit naturally into.

The Chief Data Office is performing proof of concept use cases that tackle important operational problems, like getting the right amount of Airmen through the development pipeline in time to fill manpower shortages.

“We look at every aspect of a problem, identify the possible data sets and access, condition and correlate data to support analytics to derive options for improvement,” she continued. “Those lessons
are in turn informing our Air Force Data Strategy and an Enterprise Information Model which will be a
resource for our Airmen to leverage data across the Air Force to make data-driven decisions.”

The Chief Data Office wants to continue searching for innovative ways to unleash the power of the service’s data. Crider said her team’s core priorities of finding the data, making it accessible, understanding it, linking it, making it trustworthy and providing an environment to access it will set the foundation for the Air Force’s ability to be innovative and figure out how to optimize its performance as a service.

“Data is the future of our force,” Crider said. “Being part of the CDO (Chief Data Office) team is an exciting venture… unlocking and unleashing the power of our data is going to keep the Air Force at the forefront of technological advancement. We must take advantage of today’s technology so we can learn faster than our adversaries and ensure the maximum effectiveness of our force.”