Concerns About Consolidations

Combining air staff directorates that oversee ISR operations and warfighting integration may “refocus the attention” of an office that has traditionally provided broad support Air Force wide, said Lt. Gen. Michael Basla, USAF’s chief information officer and head of its warfighting integration office, at AFA’s 2013 Air & Space Conference in National Harbor, Md., on Sept. 17. Based on the Strategic Choices Management Review briefed to the public earlier this summer, Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh directed Air Force headquarters and major commands to review their organizational structures. Consolidation of offices remains on the table, Basla said. Basla has overall responsibility for networks and network-centric policies, communications, and information resources management. He noted that such a consolidation could transfer attention “from supporting all mission areas to specific areas,” and added, “I have concerns about that.” However, in a separate session, Basla emphasized, “There is significant value” in having the warfighting integration office and the CIO connected because his role as the CIO gives him the “authority” to deliver warfighting capabilities.