Second Annual Air Force: IT Plans and Priorities Forum
Watch Recording

Second Annual Air Force: IT Plans and Priorities Forum

Recorded on Wednesday, March 23, 2022 9:00am-11:30am EST   ON24

In alignment with the increasingly urgent federal push to bolster national cybersecurity and solidify the nation’s position in global competition, the U.S. Air Force is working to accelerate its digital transformation and information technology modernization efforts.

Notably, the Air Force is implementing an agile enterprise IT-as-a-service approach to enhance data interoperability and implement cybersecurity solutions at mission speed. Additionally, the service branch is leveraging advanced technology such as robotics, automation, virtual reality simulation and artificial intelligence to strengthen its workforce, update legacy infrastructures and address global pacing challenges in the modern battlespace.

Join GovCon Wire Events for the platform’s 2nd Annual Air Force IT: Plans and Priorities Forum to hear from public and private sector leaders as they discuss the strategic priorities, cutting-edge technologies and innovative initiatives driving the Air Force today.

Winston Beauchamp, deputy chief information officer for the U.S. Department of the Air Force, will deliver the forum’s keynote address, during which he will share invaluable insights into the service branch’s current and future plans and priorities.

  • Winston Beauchamp
    Winston Beauchamp -
    Deputy Chief Information Officer, U.S. Department of the Air Force

    Winston A. Beauchamp, a member of the Senior Executive Service, is the Deputy Chief Information Officer for the Department of the Air Force, comprised of the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Space Force. He assists the Chief Information Officer in leading two directorates and supporting 20,000 cyber operations and support personnel around the globe with a portfolio valued at $17 billion. He provides oversight of the Air Force’s Information Technology portfolio including the Information Technology investment strategy from networks to cloud computing, Enterprise policies, information resources management, IT innovation initiatives, information assurance, and related matters for the Department of the Air Force. He delivers cyber security, and enforces Freedom of Information Act and Privacy Act laws, and integrates Air Force warfighting and mission support capabilities by networking and securing air, space, and terrestrial assets. Mr. Beauchamp previously served as the Director, Headquarters Air Force (HAF) Information Management, Office of the Administrative Assistant to the Secretary of the Air Force, Arlington, Virginia. In this role, he served as HAF Chief Information Officer and HAF Authorizing Official. He also managed the Air Force Declassification Office, Air Force Publications Distribution Office, and Enterprise Solutions Division. Mr. Beauchamp joined the Air Force in 2015 to serve as both the Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for Space, and the Director, Principal Defense Department Space Advisor Staff, the Pentagon, Arlington, Virginia. In this DoD role, he was responsible for integrating and overseeing DoD space capabilities and policies, coordinating with the Intelligence Community, and providing support to the Secretary of Defense on space portfolio decisions. Additionally, as Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for Space, he provided the principal support to the Under Secretary’s role as the Headquarters U.S. Air Force focal point for space matters and in coordinating activities across the Air Force space enterprise, prior to the establishment of the Space Force as an independent military branch within the Department of the Air Force. Prior to his Air Force tenure, Mr. Beauchamp served for two decades in a variety of progressively more responsible positions in several agencies of the Intelligence Community. He began his career in the National Security field in 1992 as a systems engineer with General Electric (GE) Aerospace. He worked in a number of assignments with GE and Lockheed Martin Corporation before joining the federal government as an intelligence operations specialist. EDUCATION 1992 Bachelor of Science, Industrial Engineering, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pa. 1995 Master of Science, Mechanical Engineering, Villanova University, Villanova, Pa, 2002 ICSLP Intelligence Community Senior Leadership Program, Washington, D.C. 2006 APEX Department of Defense Senior Executive Orientation Program, Washington, D.C. 2010 Capstone Military Leadership Program, Washington, D.C. CAREER CHRONOLOGY 1. 1992–1996, Systems Engineer, General Electric/Lockheed Martin Corporation, Valley Forge, Pa. 2. 1996–2000, Operations Analyst, Central Imagery Tasking Office, National Imagery and Mapping Agency, Springfield, Va. 3, 2000–2001, Senior Technical Advisor for Studies and Analysis, Analysis and Plans Office, National Imagery and Mapping Agency, Chantilly, Va. 4. 2001–2003, Director, InnoVision Frontiers Office, National Imagery and Mapping Agency, Chantilly, Va. 5. 2003–2007, Director, Acquisition Engineering Office, National Imagery and Mapping Agency, Reston, Va. 5. 2007–2009, Deputy Technical Executive, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, Bethesda, Md. 6. 2009–2011, Technical Executive, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, Bethesda, Md. 7. 2011–2012, Deputy Director, Office of Geospatial-Intelligence Management, National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, Springfield, Va. 8. 2012–2014, Director, Mission Integration Division, Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Intelligence Integration, Office of the Director of National Intelligence, McLean, Va. 9. 2014–2015, Deputy Director, Advanced Capability and Deterrence Panel, Office of the Director of National Intelligence, McLean, Va. 10. 2015–2017, Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for Space and Director, Principal Department of Defense Space Advisor Staff, Washington, D.C. 11. 2017–2018, Special Assistant to the Administrative Assistant to the Secretary of the Air Force, Arlington, Va. 12. 2018–2020, Director, Headquarters Air Force Information Management and Headquarters Air Force Chief Information Officer, Office of the Administrative Assistant to the Secretary of the Air Force, Arlington, Va. 13. 2020–2021, Associate Deputy Chief Information Officer, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, Arlington, Va. 14. 2021–present, Deputy Chief Information Officer, Office of the Secretary of the Air Force, Arlington, Va. AWARDS AND HONORS 2012 Meritorious Executive Presidential Rank Award 2015 Distinguished Civilian Service Medal from National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency 2015 Outstanding Service Award from the Office of the Director of National Intelligence 2015 Intelligence Community Medallion 2017 Air Force Exceptional Civilian Service Award

  • Jay Bonci
    Jay Bonci -
    CTO, Office of the Chief Information Officer, U.S. Department of the Air Force

    Mr. Jason Bonci is the Department of the Air Force Chief Technology Officer at Office of the Chief Information Officer. His responsibilities are to drive the adoption, resilience, and strategic technical vision of the Enterprise IT portfolio. Prior to his current position, he was the Senior Director of Public Sector Engineering at Akamai Technologies in Cambridge, Massachusetts. There he led a team of 60 engineering, operations, and consulting professionals in designing and operating Akamai’s public sector portfolio. This included being the technology provider behind the Department of Defense’s Global Content Delivery Service program that powered delivery, security, and optimizations for over 2,000 capabilities. Under his architectural guidance, this service became part of the technical underpinning of the DoD’s internet access delivery system, the Air Force enterprise cloud program (CloudOne) and the Army’s identity and credential access management system. Mr. Bonci also designed and fielded the Shepherd protective domain name service program in conjunction with Defense Digital Service which helped protect Defense Industrial Base companies and national critical infrastructure. Over this 14 year tenure, he had numerous roles in the public sector, including engineering management and as an individual contributor in systems engineering and web applications. Prior to Akamai, Mr. Bonci was involved in the Open Source community as an engineer at VA Linux and as a contributor to the Debian Linux Distribution. Having worked as an independent security researcher, he is a contributor to the DoD Vulnerability Disclosure Program. He is also an Eagle Scout.

  • David Burns
    David Burns -
    Deputy Division Chief, Enterprise IT and Cyber Infrastructure Division, PEO/C3I&N, U.S. Air Force

    David P. Burns is the Deputy Division Chief for the Enterprise IT and Cyber Infrastructure Division within the Program Executive Office, Command, Control, Communications, Intelligence and Networks PEO/C3I&N, Hanscom AFB, Mass. In this role he is responsible for organizing, training and equipping the HNI Team to conduct the mission of a 900+ member division, across 4 geographic locations, performing management, design, deployment, and sustainment of $6.5B in Air Force Information Technology infrastructure. He leads a diverse organization responsible for delivering cyber and IT Infrastructure and Services that connect Airmen and Guardians with the data and information required to accomplish their missions while providing superior 24x7x365 communications around the globe. The Division delivers AF-wide network management and network defense solutions, and fields wired, wireless, and cloud hosting infrastructure for over 300 Air Force active duty, guard, and reserve installations worldwide. These systems provide warfighting commanders with battlefield situational awareness and accurate, relevant, decision quality information on a global information grid, supporting over 600,000 airmen and over 237,000 contractors across all CONUS and OCONUS Air Force bases and all deployed locations. Prior to taking the reigns as the Enterprise IT and Cyber Infrastructure Deputy Division Chief, Mr. Burns established the Air Force Cyber Resiliency Office for Weapon Systems (CROWS), located at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass. In this role he had authority and responsibility to work across the Air Force to increase the resiliency and mission assurance of fielded and future weapon systems in a cyber-contested environment. He directed over 100 military, civilian, FFRDC and contractor personnel and executed a budget in excess of $400 million in the accomplishment of CROWS projects such as: Identifying academic partners, curriculum development and investment in cyber education/training to increase the cyber competency of the existing/future engineering workforce; increase hiring and retention rates of cyber experts; enhance weapon system design and test requirements to include cyber resiliency; define and complete mission thread/weapon system criticality analysis; create modular open system architecture standards and pathfinder use cases; identify cyber resiliency issues and fixes to fielded weapon systems; and increase adversarial threat assessment. Previously, Mr. Burns held leadership positions in the Acquisition Center of Excellence (ACE) and the AF Joint Mission Planning Systems (JMPS) Program Office at Hanscom AFB. As the Senior Advisor in the ACE, he initiated a public, private partnership with MA Workforce Development Authority, University of Massachusetts Lowell and Hanscom AFB to develop and execute Program Manager, Project Manager Professional Certificate Program. As the JMPS Branch Chief, he was responsible for managing, developing and fielding product capability upgrades to support all fighter, bomber, weapon and reconnaissance platforms in the AF. In this role he directed over 65 military, civilian, FFRDC and contractor personnel, 12 contracts and executed a budget in excess of $240 million. Mr. Burns also successfully managed and led numerous sales and marketing teams within private industry at Genzyme and Cisco Systems during his diverse career. Mr. Burns is a veteran of the United States Air Force and a 1985 graduate of the United States Air Force Academy. He holds a Bachelors in Engineering Sciences, Masters in Engineering Management and is certified in Network Cyber Security. Personally, Mr. Burns is committed to contributing to his community in positive ways. As a former college rugby and basketball player, he has used his athletic experience to coach girls club and high school soccer and basketball within his local community. He has been a committed foster parent to 12 at-risk children and is the legal guardian and an impassioned advocate for a young boy and cancer survivor from Rwanda. Mr. Burns currently lives and works in Massachusetts and enjoys spending time with friends cycling the back roads of Massachusetts and participate in charity rides such as The Pan Mass Challenge (4 years), Best Buddies (1 year) and extreme cycling adventures, such as the B2VT (140 mile ride Bedford, Mass. to Okemo, Vt.) and the Mt Washington Auto Road Bicycle Hill climb. EDUCATION 1985 Bachelors of Science in Engineering Sciences, USAFA, Colorado 1989 Masters in Engineering Management, Western New England University, Mass. 2017 Computer & Information Systems Cyber Security Certified, University of Massachusetts, Mass. MAJOR AWARDS AND DECORATIONS 2020 - Meritorious Civilian Service Award

  • Vincent DiFronzo
    Vincent DiFronzo -
    EVP, Air Force and Combatant Command, SAIC

    Vincent DiFronzo is executive vice president for the SAIC Business Group supporting the U.S. Air Force, Combatant Commands, and Department of Defense agencies. He is responsible for leading over 2,900 employees and several hundred programs spanning C5ISR, information technology, training systems and R&D programs. DiFronzo joined SAIC in 2015 as a vice president, responsible for SAIC’s Air Force programs. He has more than 15 years of defense industry experience, in addition to previous experience in the Air Force, where he retired as a colonel in 2007. In the Air Force, DiFronzo commanded the Air Force’s 505th Command and Control Wing, the 23rd Fighter Group, and the 58th Fighter Squadron. He was also the 19th Air Force vice commander, vice wing commander for the 455th Expeditionary Wing at Bagram Airfield in Afghanistan, and director of AFCENT’s Air Operations Center Combat Operations Division during the first year of Operation Enduring Freedom following 9/11. DiFronzo also served two Pentagon tours working advanced program requirements and as the executive officer for the Deputy Chief of Staff for Air and Space Operations. DiFronzo has 3,600 flying hours, including approximately 200 hours of combat time in the F-15C and A-10. He graduated from the Air Force Academy, the National War College, and Golden Gate University with an MBA.

  • Preston Dunlap
    Preston Dunlap -
    Chief Architect, Department of the Air and Space Force

    Mr. Preston C. Dunlap is the first Chief Architect Officer of the Space Force and Air Force and oversees the architecture of the Department’s nearly $70 billion of research, development, and acquisition programs. He creates partnerships across the Defense and Intelligence Communities to transform technology development and acquisition so the Department not only designs, develops, and buys the right mix of future capability but does so more rapidly and with the power of agility and interoperability. Mr. Dunlap has spearheaded or incubated critical modernization efforts, including Commercial Space integration, Data and Artificial Intelligence, Digital Transformation, Joint All-Domain Command and Control, Advanced Battle Management System, Integrated Warfighting Networks, Autonomy, Human- Machine Teaming, and Next Generation Air Dominance. Prior to this position, Mr. Dunlap was the Executive for National Security and Executive Leadership Board member of the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, the nation’s largest University Affiliated Research Center. There he oversaw national security defense and intelligence programs at all levels of classification and managed an extensive and diverse organization of program managers, technologists, analysts, and operators. He led programs in support of the Vice President of the United States, Cabinet Secretaries, the Secretary of Defense, and the Director of National Intelligence. Mr. Dunlap served on the corporate Executive Leadership Board of the Laboratory. At the request of Congress, he also testified before the full House Armed Services Committee. Before joining the Laboratory in 2014, Mr. Dunlap was a career member of the Senior Executive Service and served four Secretaries of Defense. He held the roles of Director of Program Analysis, Chief of Staff to the Senate-confirmed Director of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation, Senior Analyst for Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance (ISR) and Space Programs, and Deputy Director of the Simulation and Analysis Center. He shaped the Department of Defense $650 billion budget as well as associated Intelligence Community and National Nuclear Security Administration plans. Mr. Dunlap led the Long Range Strike Front End Assessment and started the B-21 bomber program as well as future weapons, hypersonics, intelligence, electronic warfare, and communications capabilities. He was hand- selected by the Secretary of Defense to help lead the Strategic Choices and Management Review where he identified $50 billion of savings per year to meet the Budget Control Act. Prior to government, Mr. Dunlap held various roles in the private sector as an early member of rapidly growing technology startup companies. He earned a Master of Science degree with honors in Operations Research and Management Science from George Mason University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in both Computer Science and Political Science from Duke University. Mr. Dunlap is Lean Six Sigma certified and is a graduate of the Harvard University National Security Senior Executive program and the Federal Executive Institute and served on the Board of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Seminar XXI program. Mr. Dunlap’s awards include the Secretary of Defense Medal for Meritorious Civilian Service, Secretary of the Air Force Award for Meritorious Civilian Service, and multiple citations of both the Secretaryof Defense Medal for Exceptional Civilian Service and Secretary of Defense Award for Excellence.

  • Timothy Helfrich
    COL Timothy Helfrich -
    Senior Materiel Leader (SML) for Cyber Systems,(PEO),C3I&N), U.S. Air Force

    Colonel Timothy M. Helfrich is the Senior Materiel Leader (SML) for Cyber Systems, which falls under the Program Executive Officer (PEO), Command, Control, Communications, Intelligence and Networks (C3I&N) Directorate, Air Force Life Cycle Management Center, Air Force Materiel Command. He leads a team of over 700 military, civil service, and contract support personnel to develop, acquire and sustain cyber systems for the United States Air Force, sister services, and United States Cyber Command. As the SML, Colonel Helfrich manages a budget of $4.2B for cyber programs, including offensive capabilities, defensive capabilities, command and control, and platforms. Additionally, he oversees Platform One, the official DevSecOps Enterprise Services team for the Department of Defense. Col Helfrich was born in Indianapolis, Indiana. He received his commission from the United States Air Force Reserve Officer Training Course, Detachment 220 at Purdue University in May 2002. Previously, he served as the Materiel Leader for the Battlefield Airborne Communications Node (BACN). Additionally, he has served in a variety of acquisition positions at an Air Logistics Center, the Air Force Research Laboratory, a flight test squadron, Air Staff, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, and a classified program office. Col Helfrich has combat experience from Operation IRAQI FREEDOM, where he was the Detachment Commander for a joint flying unit that provided airborne command and control to logistics patrols across Iraq. In addition, he deployed as the SOCCENT Forward Headquarters Commandant, providing all life support functions for Special Operations Forces personnel in the CENTCOM AOR.

  • Chris Owen
    Chris Owen -
    Senior Program Director, Air Force IT, Peraton

    As a senior program director, Chris ensures that Peraton meets the U.S. Air Force’s expectations for solutions that support the mission to fly, fight and win. His experience in delivering commercial solutions across the IT services continuum provides ongoing value to key Air Force programs such as SIPRNet modernization. Through deployments of global technology solutions, Chris has become an expert in “as a service” delivery and 24x7 managed services. With this foundation he leads teams in aligning solutions to the U.S. Department of Defense framework and achieving program requirements. He works with customers to build a solid foundation for partnership, incorporate new capabilities for programs and foster a culture of continuous improvement. Chris holds a bachelor’s degree in business management and a security clearance level of Top Secret, TS/SCI.

  • Sanjay Sardar
    Sanjay Sardar -
    President, Civilian & Health Operating Group, ASRC Federal Holding Company

    Sanjay Sardar serves as the senior vice president for digital at SAIC, with responsibility overseeing and managing the company’s strategy of delivering digital transformation and IT modernization solutions and capabilities across all customers. Sardar is also responsible for SAIC’s overall direction and strategic growth aligned with the federal government’s digital transformation, leveraging cloud and platform technologies, application development, cybersecurity, and immersive technologies. Sardar joined SAIC in 2015 as vice president for advanced analytics and simulation, where he successfully led the development and implementation of the strategy to manage business and operations related to advanced analytics, big data engineering, information management, and knowledge management. In 2018, Sardar ran a $400 million citizen services and infrastructure portfolio, supporting the General Services Administration, Department of Commerce, Department of Energy, Department of Agriculture, Environmental Protection Agency, and other federal civilian customers. Prior to joining SAIC, Sardar was the chief information officer for the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, where he had responsibility for oversight of the strategic management of its IT portfolio. During his tenure in civil service, Sardar also chaired the Federal Small Agency CIO Council, representing more than 80 small agencies on the Office of Management and Budget’s Federal CIO Council. Prior to 2008, Sardar was a senior manager at General Dynamics Information Technology, leading technology efforts for many major government agencies. During his career, Sardar has spent more than 25 years working and consulting in the public sector and private industry, focusing on providing strategic technology management services to technology providers, pharmaceuticals, telecoms, financial institutions, and federal/state/local governments. He has extensive training in advanced analytics, information management, systems/enterprise architecture, and custom software development. He previously held technology management positions at Oracle, Computer Associates, and several internet-based startups in Canada, Europe, and the U.S. Sardar serves on several boards including WashExec, Evanta, AFFIRM, and the Advanced Technology Academic Research Center (ATARC). Sardar earned his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the University of Virginia and an MBA with concentration in finance and strategy from George Washington University.

  • Mark Westergren
    Maj Gen (Ret.) Mark Westergren -
    Senior Program Director, Peraton

    As the deputy program manager and transition lead for the $905 million U.S. Army Cyber Command (ARCYBER) Cyberspace Operations Support contract, Mark Westergren helps lead Peraton’s support to ARCYBER’s cyberspace operations mission and oversaw management of its transition from Fort Belvoir to Fort Gordon. Westergren is a retired major general in the U.S. Air Force with more than 34 years of executive experience leading large, complex defense, intelligence and cyber organizations. His military career spanned scientific, intelligence and foreign area career fields and encompassed a wide variety of operational, staff, command and joint assignments in Asia, Europe, Middle East and U.S. Prior to joining Peraton, Maj. Gen. (Ret.) Westergren was the director, engagement and policy, and the deputy chief, Central Security Service, for the National Security Agency (NSA). As director, he led 3,000 personnel in directing, aligning and integrating NSA's enterprise-wide global engagement and communications effort, mission compliance and strategic planning. As deputy chief, he assisted the director of NSA with operational control of signals intelligence missions conducted by all the military services, comprising over 15,000 personnel. Before NSA, Westergren oversaw the global allocation of Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) capabilities for the DoD. He also served as the director of intelligence at United States Strategic Command and at HQ Air Force as the director of ISR strategy, plans and force development. From 2004 to 2010, he held various positions: director of ISR for Pacific Air Forces; director of collection management for Multi-National Forces-Iraq; commander of the Air Force Technical Applications Center; and Air Force Fellowship at the RAND Corporation. Early in his career, Westergren worked in various scientific, education and intelligence jobs. For five years at the Air Force Phillips Laboratory, he developed coherent semiconductor laser arrays. As an Olmsted Scholar, he learned Korean and studied international relations at Seoul National University in Korea. After switching to intelligence, he led intelligence teams that assessed global strategic threats, analyzed/exploited intelligence on North Korean political, military and technology developments, and drove counter-terrorism intelligence operations. Westergren holds a master’s in international public policy from Johns Hopkins’ School of Advanced International Studies; a master’s in military operational art and science from the Air Command and Staff College; an MBA in finance from Webster University; and a bachelor’s in chemical engineering from Syracuse University.

  • 9:00am - 9:05am EST

    Opening Comments

  • 9:05am - 9:40am EST

    Opening Keynote

  • 9:40am - 10:50am EST

    Panel Discussion

  • 10:50am - 11:25am EST

    Closing Keynote

  • 11:25am - 11:30am EST

    Closing Remarks

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