Coffee in as USDA Associate CIO for Data Center Operations

Richard Coffee will be the new Associate Chief Information Officer for Data Center Operations and Director of the National Information Technology Center at the Agriculture Department, starting June 15, according to an internal email obtained by FedScoop.

“Throughout Richard’s career, he has consistently delivered value-added information technology programs and services that have effectively supported the missions and enterprise IT operations of the many diverse organizations where he has been privileged to serve,” USDA deputy CIO Charles McClam said in the email. “I believe Richard is the caliber of employee that is so often sought out by organizational leadership at all levels of government and industry; but is seldom found.”

Coffee will replace Ed Reyelts who has been the acting associate CIO for Data Center Operations. Reyelts joined USDA in 2006 as Deputy Associate Chief Information Officer. Reyelts’ future plans were not immediately clear at publication time.


“Ed has done an outstanding job providing the essential leadership that have resulted in the delivery of world-class information technology programs and services in this ever changing and uncertain budget climate,” McClam said in the email. “My hat is off to him for his dedication and committed leadership during this period of transition.”

Coffee has been the USDA’s Associate CIO for Cyber Policy and Oversight since February 2011. Before that, he worked as the senior adviser to the Deputy Chief Information Officer and the Acting Deputy Chief Information Officer for Technology Planning, Architecture and E-Government, where he managed an IT portfolio budget of $2.6 billion.

Prior to his time at the USDA, Coffee worked in the Small Business Administration as the Chief Enterprise Architect to the CIO. Coffee has also worked in leadership roles at Data General Corporation, U.S. Forestry Service and the Small Business Administration.

Prior to his tenure at the SBA, Coffee served 10 years as a systems engineer with the  U.S. Senate Computer Center. He is credited with converting 100 Senator’s offices and 32 Senate Committees from proprietary office automation systems to non-proprietary network-based systems. He also led the implementation of the Senate’s first computer–telephony integrated helpdesk system.

“I am indeed privileged to have him as a member of the OCIO leadership team,” McClam said. “I am confident that he will provide the visionary leadership that [has enabled NITC’s] high availability data center operations that support the delivery of cost effective and efficient data center services to USDA customers throughout the Federal space.”

Jake Williams

Written by Jake Williams

Jake Williams is a Staff Reporter for FedScoop and StateScoop. At StateScoop, he covers the information technology issues and events at state and local governments across the nation. In the past, he has covered the United States Postal Service, the White House, Congress, cabinet-level departments and emerging technologies in the unmanned aircraft systems field for FedScoop. Before FedScoop, Jake was a contributing writer for Campaigns & Elections magazine. He has had work published in the Huffington Post and several regional newspapers and websites in Pennsylvania. A northeastern Pennsylvania native, Jake graduated magna cum laude from the Indiana University of Pennsylvania, or IUP, in 2014 with a bachelor's degree in journalism and a minor in political science. At IUP, Jake was the editor-in-chief of the campus newspaper, The Penn, and the president of the university chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.

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