As chief of emergent services at the Defense Information Systems Agency, Charlie Fields is tasked with bringing new technology to warfighters.
Fields knows a good idea when he sees one. But he also can spot all the “good ideas” that are simply not feasible in reality, saving the agency valuable time and money and freeing up DISA professionals to work on truly critical projects, such as bringing better technological mobility to the warfighter as well as spearheading the aggressive use of social media to predict and prevent foreign attacks.
“In Charlie’s line of work, the most important successes that he’s delivered are not finished products or solutions — it’s actually figuring out what innovations or solution will not work,” according to Fields’ nomination. “It’s an interesting distinction compared to most in federal government, but extremely pertinent to Charlie’s role. By identifying ‘good ideas’ that are not feasible in reality before execution, he is able to save DISA valuable time and money, as well as freeing up other employees to spend their time on more critical missions.”
Fields’ accomplishment garnered him an IT Innovator of the Year award as part of the inaugural Pinnacle Awards. The award recognizes government C-suite leaders and program directors who were change agents within their agencies. The Innovator of Year award was given to five government leaders:
- Jose Arrieta of the Department of Health and Human Services
- Dr. Ryan Vega of the Department of Veterans Affairs
- Molly Cain, formerly of the Department of Homeland Security
- Gary Washington of the Agriculture Department
Among Fields’ award-winning work is a project providing communications for units in communication-challenged areas, such as locations that lack internet connectivity. By developing new ways for troops to communicate with each other to overcome these challenges, Fields has improved their ability to react in real-time to any situation that arises.
The 2018 Pinnacle Awards, which honor leaders and influencers in the GovCon space, were presented by WashingtonExec on Nov. 1.
Winners were named from list of 50 finalists across 13 categories.