GEOINT - Opening Session Focuses on Mom, Apple Pie and Training
The GEIONT conference is focused on the applications of geospatial technology for military and civilian intelligence gathering and interpretation. Much of the opening sessions at this year’s GEOINT conference in Orlando, Florida focussed on reviewing the mission of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency now headed by Vice Admiral Robert Murrett. Murrett delivered the keynote that presented the mission of the NGA and the fine shape in which he found the organization vacated by General James Clapper (ret.). However, a recurring theme that transcended Murrett’s presentation, his subsequent press conference and another general session during the morning was the challenge of finding and keeping talented and experienced geospatial analysts. Murrett addressed the issue of retaining personnel over the long term in a job in which the workforce finds satisfaction. Robert Cardillo, deputy director for analysis of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) said that over 50% if his workforce was not employed before 9-11. He has a daily challenge of training staff.He worries about his middle management which have not had the training of managing the analytical teams and sees no progress in training middle management. Dr. John Stopher, Budget Director for the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence commented that, "There are not many people on the hill (referring to Congress) that have the time and energy to devote to this," referring to personnel policy.