On Nov. 20, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead named the commander of Naval Air Force Atlantic to lead the Department of the Navy's largest, enterprise-wide IT initiative as the new Assistant Chief of Naval Operations for the Next Generation Enterprise Network System Program Office. As ACNO (NGEN), Rear Adm. John W. Goodwin will oversee the DON's development, acquisition and deployment of NGEN — the follow-on to the Navy Marine Corps Intranet contract that ends Sept. 30, 2010.
The NGEN SPO, a first-of-its-kind organization in the DON, was approved by the CNO and Commandant of the Marine Corps earlier this year. It brings together the DON's governance areas for NGEN — policy, resources and requirements, acquisition, and fleet readiness, support and operations — under a single command. The elevated coordination at the ACNO level will ensure stakeholders are included in the design and implementation process and help facilitate a smooth transition from NMCI to NGEN with continuity of services to end users.
The SPO includes all of the functions of the existing NGEN, NMCI and OCONUS Navy Enterprise Network (ONE-NET) program offices. The SPO resides within the Navy staff, leveraging the institutional support of both CNO and Headquarters Marine Corps staffs.
Goodwin will join the NGEN SPO in January. Interim ACNO (NGEN), Rear Adm. David G. Simpson, will lead the SPO until Goodwin arrives. Simpson continues to set the foundation as the NGEN resource sponsor in his assigned position as the director of Navy Networks on the deputy chief of Naval Operations for Communication Networks (OPNAV N6) staff. Marine Corps Col. David M. Hagopian will continue to serve as the deputy director, NGEN SPO.
The NGEN initiative is focused on re-establishing government design and operational control over Naval networks, creating a more secure and agile intranet, and recruiting and developing the future Naval IT workforce. It is a central pillar in the department's goal of building the Naval Networking Environment (NNE), the DON's vision for a highly secure reliable enterprise IT system that provides ready access to data, services and applications when and where needed.
The NGEN SPO will coordinate continued service for existing shore and garrison networks, including NMCI; support consolidation of legacy networks; and direct the transition to NGEN while providing implementation oversight to enable enhanced capabilities within the future NNE by 2016.
The NGEN initiative is currently in the pre-decision phase with a requirements document approved earlier this year by the CNO and CMC. A system specification, currently under development, will further define the required system functions and performance parameters. The acquisition approach, currently under draft, is expected to be based on a notional segmentation concept that breaks existing network functions into groups and separates services into those that may be run by the DON and others that could be outsourced.
Under the current NMCI contract, network services are provided by one prime contractor. The DON has released four Requests for Information and held one industry day to get feedback from the information technology community on the NGEN initiative.
– Edited from Navy News Service Dec. 2, 2008