Forum on World Class IT - 191 Interviews and Podcasts

Welcome to the Forum on World Class IT podcast series, a collection of exclusive interviews with Chief Information Officers and other IT industry thought leaders. Learn from the experts on how best to establish a truly World Class IT organization.

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October 22, 2012: Adrian Gardner, Chief Information Officer of Goddard Space Flight Center

Among other topics, Adrian discusses the following issues with Metis Strategy:
  • Adrian’s role as CIO at Goddard Space Flight Center and how he influences IT as a whole, manages the terrestrial mission network, and provides robust and efficient IT resources to scientists and engineers
  • How Adrian seeks to implement innovative practices at Goddard through drawing from public, open source, and private sector communities (such as venture capital firms)
  • How cross-collaboration in IT emerged through emphasizing an agency view, and how various centers operate in an environment where they  simultaneously compete and collaborate to win certain pieces of work
  • Adrian’s focus in ensuring the IT organization maintains focus on how IT can contribute to Goddard’s competitiveness as a center, and how this principle underlies the IT strategy
  • How Goddard manages massive amounts of structured, unstructured, and semi-structured data in order to support sound, real-time decision making
  • Goddard’s security posture and its focus on data management due to operating in an environment where there is a significant amount of sharing of information with external entities
  • Eye on Trends: Consumerization of IT and how consumers leverage a broad range of technologies and tailor them to their own individual needs, mobility and how individuals can have access to information from anywhere on any device, and the rise in open source and utilizing open source communities to develop and refine technologies.

Adrian Gardner’s Biography

Adrian is a member of the Senior Executive Service and currently serves as the Director of the Information Technology and Communications Directorate and Chief Information Officer for the Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) at NASA. As such, he is responsible for providing the GSFC workforce with the information infrastructure and tools that adapt and evolve to effectively and securely support management, science, research, and technology programs while developing, implementing, and operating specialized IT systems to support NASA mission planning and operation, and providing systems that disseminate information to the public and that preserve NASA’s information assets.

Adrian is also Chair of POC Working Group for DATA.GOV; Co-Chair of the Federal CIO Council Information Sharing Subcommittee, and he formerly held the role of Chief Information Officer for the National Weather Service.

Among his many accolades, Adrian was awarded Temple University’s IT Manager of the Year award for 2012, recognizing him as one of Information Management’s Top 25, and he played an integral role in Goddard Space Flight Center’s most recent recognition as one of Information Week’s Top 500 Innovators.

Adrian is a Doctoral Candidate at the University of Southern California’s (USC) School of Public Policy.  Additionally, he holds a Masters degree in Public Administration from USC, and a Master of Science degree in Environmental Studies from Hood College.  Adrian also has a Bachelor of Science degree in Biological Science and Ecology from the Tuskegee Institute.

The World Class IT principles in yellow were the focus of this interview