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In this two-part interview, Navy Under Secretary Thomas Modly discusses the importance of technology to the department’s missions, the Navy’s new frigate, and how working with allies is easier in the naval space.

Like other branches of the military, the Navy is pushing for modernization in several areas. From overhauling networks to acquiring modern ships, the priorities for the sea service are clear. Navy Under Secretary Thomas Modly, says that because technology is so integral to national defense now, elevating the CIO role is imperative.


“We’ve elevated the CIO function to our level. We’re now trying to create an assistant secretary for information management. We’re working with the congress on the legislation for that, but really this is such a critical part of everything that we do that we really need to elevate the management of it. And also make sure that we’ve coordinated every part of it with the DoD CIO.”


Modly told Government Matters that the naval domain is key to the United States relationship with allies, due to key assets and resources located underneath the ocean.


“The ocean is very very big, and it’s difficult for us to be able to do that on our own. It’s a lot easier, I believe, in the naval context to come to common understanding on common goals. Freedom of navigation of the seas, acceptance of general rules and behavior on the oceans. We all have so much at stake, not just with respect to commerce that goes across the ocean, but information that flows underneath it in cables. We’re all incredibly dependent on this, so I think it’s easier to find common ground in the maritime space working with partners and allies.”

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