The Army has officially created an offensive cyber and space program office to manage the portfolio of capabilities it provides for soldiers as well as the joint force.
In a ceremony on July 25, Christopher Green assumed the role for project management for cyber and space within the program executive office for intelligence, electronic warfare and sensors.
Officials have previously discussed the creation of such a program office, but it was officially stood up this week. The new portfolio was necessary to carve out from IEW&S due to the amount of joint work the Army is doing on behalf of U.S. Cyber Command to deliver capabilities and programs for the cyber mission force across all the services, which grew too big to continue to manage out of the electronic warfare and cyber program office.
The services, as executive agents, have historically been responsible for procurement for larger acquisition programs on behalf of Cybercom for the entire joint cyber mission force as part of the Joint Cyber Warfighting Architecture (JCWA). The JCWA was designed in 2019 to get a better handle on the capabilities, platforms and programs Cyerbcom was designing, and set priorities for the Department of Defense as well as the industry partners that would be building them.
While Cybercom will inherit new budgeting authorities in October that will put it in charge of all aspects of the cyber force and capabilities, it is still maturing and thus will still look to the services and their expertise to continue building these platforms for them on a reimbursable basis.
The new program office will handle work on the Joint Common Access Platform for executing offensive operations and the Joint Development Environment, a space to rapidly develop and test cyber tools.
The new office also follows a larger consolidation within the Army that will take place this fall in which all cyber capabilities, offensive and defensive, will be managed by IEW&S. Previously, the defensive portfolio was managed by the program executive for enterprise information systems.
According to an Army release, the move to establish the new office is a recognition of the Army’s contribution to joint cyber ops.
“The days of the Army being a kinetic-only force are gone. Our ability to operate in multiple arenas has become paramount with none more important than mastering the cyber warfare arena … The speed in which you must operate in this environment [cyberspace] is crucial,” Brig. Gen. Ed Barker, PEO for IEW&S, said at the ceremony this week, according to the Army. “That’s why we felt that the emphasis on this domain is important and to stand-up a dedicated organization based on that. An organization that has the agility, the mechanisms, the processes in place, the workforce, the culture to be able to respond quickly. The traditional acquisition cycles no longer apply in this space.”
On the space front, the office will manage much of the national space assets the Army has been handling in recent years under product manager for tactical exploitation of national capabilities.
The Army said the new PM C&S will focus on recruiting new talent and supporting its stakeholders over the next six months to a year. In the future, it will also include the migration of tactical space capabilities and new offices to support emerging cyber requirements.