CDAO identifies combatant command ‘embed’ — but stays tight-lipped on unfolding initiative 

The Pentagon is trying to enable combatant commands to better capture and curate usable data to accelerate decision-making and inform their increasingly complex operations. 
Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks meets with U.S. Indo-Pacific Command’s Chief Digital and Artificial Intelligence Office representative Dan Tadevich and other members of the Artificial Intelligence and Data Accelerator operational data team at USINDOPACOM Headquarters, Camp H.M. Smith, Hawaii, July 6, 2023. (DoD photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. John Wright)

The Chief Digital and Artificial Intelligence Office’s “embed” at U.S. Indo-Pacific Command headquarters in Hawaii — who is tasked with helping service members there more rapidly access and adopt data-driven and digital capabilities to support their missions — is Dan Tadevich, DefenseScoop has learned.

Deputy Defense Secretary Kathleen Hicks launched the Accelerating Data and AI (ADA) initiative, which is now CDAO led, in 2021 as a systematized plan to enable combatant commands to better capture and curate usable data to accelerate decision-making and inform their increasingly complex operations. 

Since then, CDAO leaders have hinted at various ADA-aligned successes but they’ve largely remained tight-lipped regarding who the officials dispatched to the combatant commands are, those individuals’ skill sets, and other seemingly basic details about how the initiative is ultimately unfolding.

“We’ve placed permanent [General Schedule-grade 15, or GS-15 officials with data science and algorithmic expertise] inside the combatant commands,” Deputy CDAO Margie Palmieri told DefenseScoop on the sidelines of a Hudson Institute event in January.

She also briefly noted then that the embeds have been conducting digital readiness assessments for each of the commands, which essentially audit associated processes, technology deployments and other factors.

After repeated inquiries from DefenseScoop since that conversation, a CDAO spokesperson on Thursday confirmed that Dan Tadevich is the senior representative embedded at Indo-Pacom.


The spokesperson did not provide any further information regarding his current responsibilities in this capacity, outputs so far, or professional background. 

They also declined to name any other CDAO embeds operating at other combatant commands.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Tadevich joined the CDAO in March 2022 and previously served as an Indo-Pacom operational data team lead, C3I systems engineer for MITRE, Pacific Air Forces knowledge management chief, and military deputy to the principal deputy for research in the Office of the Secretary of Defense, among other positions. 

Tadevich didn’t respond to a request for comment on LinkedIn.

Brandi Vincent

Written by Brandi Vincent

Brandi Vincent is DefenseScoop's Pentagon correspondent. She reports on emerging and disruptive technologies, and associated policies, impacting the Defense Department and its personnel. Prior to joining Scoop News Group, Brandi produced a long-form documentary and worked as a journalist at Nextgov, Snapchat and NBC Network. She was named a 2021 Paul Miller Washington Fellow by the National Press Foundation and was awarded SIIA’s 2020 Jesse H. Neal Award for Best News Coverage. Brandi grew up in Louisiana and received a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Maryland.

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