A Look Into the Future of Homeland Security

A Conversation with Leaders from DHS and The District of Columbia Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency




Antonio Villafana currently serves as Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the Office of Health Affairs (OHA), Department of Homeland Security (DHS). In this position, Antonio provides executive leadership and technical expertise in support of IT Investment Acquisition and Governance.

 

Let us know a little bit about yourself and your session?
“My name is Antonio Villafana, and currently the Chief Information Officer of the DHS Countering Weapons of Mass Destruction (CWMD) Office. I have been with DHS since 2008 and have served several IT leadership roles. As a former developer and architect, AI and Blockchain technologies really speaks to my inner geek. AI and Blockchain has opened a gateway to advanced autonomous machines and algorithms.”
What are some of the challenges that you are facing right now?
“There are numerous challenges facing Federal CIO’s, that said, the key challenges I’m facing
today include, in no particular order, is the availability of skilled resources to modernize and
architect AI and Blockchain solutions. We are certainly not on the same level when it comes to compensation. However, we are seeing more millennials interested in Civil Service opportunities,
and they are attributing their decisions to patriotism and a desire to serve. In addition to skilled resources, AI and Blockchain requires massive amounts of computing power, which can be cost
prohibitive and difficult to architect within current architecture."