VA to lose both CIO, CTO

No word on what's next for them or for VA
By Anthony Brino
06:33 AM

Department of Veterans Affairs CIO Roger Baker and CTO Peter Levin are both leaving the agency after three years.

Levin and Baker’s tenure came as the VA was in the midst of serving thousands of veterans returning from Iraq and Afghanistan and trying to streamline healthcare and disability benefits in the digital age.

Baker, the Commerce Department CIO from 1998 to 2011 and formerly CEO of the IT firm Dataline, said in a memo to colleagues, released by Federal News Radio, that the VA IT team has established “one of the highest performing product delivery organizations in the world” that it “is seen as an investment for the VA rather than an expense.”

[See also: VA CIO affirms commitment to joint EHR.]

"Most critically,” Baker wrote, “VA IT has become the backbone for the transformation of the VA into a 21st Century organization.”

As Federal News Radio noted, Baker led the VA’s adoption of mobile devices, tried to improve claims procesing and was one of the first Obama Administration CIOs to use a date-based review process to cancel, halt or improve IT projects, with the VA now deliverying 9 out of 10 IT projects on schedule.

Levin, a National Science Foundation Presidential Young Investigator under President George H.W. Bush and a White House Fellow under President Bill Clinton, led the VA’s creation of the Blue Button personal health record technology.

[See also: The VA's hot Blue Button.]

Working in the private sector, Levin co-founded a semiconductor design software company and was formerly a partner at Dusseldorf-based Ventizz Capital Partners. He was instrumental in helping launch VA telehealth programs, using them online and phone communications in veteran suicide prevention programs and for oncology care follow ups.

No word on when Baker and Levin are departing or what they’ll do next.

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