DISA’s new director cleared by Senate

DISA's new director cleared his final hurdle to take one of the top IT roles in the military.
U.S. Air Force Maj. Gen. Robert Skinner, Deputy Commander of Air Force Space Command, speaks at the 2018 Rocky Mountain Cyberspace Symposium in Colorado Springs, Colorado, March 6, 2018. Skinner discussed the command’s efforts to improve processes, develop personnel, and push technology forward in the cyber security field. The symposium is a national forum for industry and government to collaborate to help meet challenges of cyber security, cyber readiness, and national defense. (U.S. Air Force photo by Dave Grim)

The incoming director of the Defense Information Systems Agency, Lt. Gen. Robert Skinner, cleared the final hurdle to assume the job, earning Senate confirmation in late October.

Skinner, an Air Force general, will replace Vice. Adm. Nancy Norton as head of the defense IT support agency. He will be returning to DISA after previously serving as its chief of staff. He brings a career filled with other military IT-related jobs, most recently as director of the J-6 Command, Control, Communications, and Cyber Directorate for the United States Indo-Pacific Command in Hawaii.

Skinner will also lead the Joint Forces Headquarters-Department of Defense Information Network (JFHQ-DODIN). The dual-hatted role is one of the highest-ranking IT positions in the military, overseeing the defense and modernization of DOD networks.

DISA is undertaking a modernization effort across the so-called Fourth Estate support agencies, consolidating their individually-run networks into one enterprise service.


As a part of Skinner’s confirmation to lead DISA and JFHQ-DODIN, he will receive his third star in a promotion to Lieutenant General.

When Norton was nominated to replace then-DISA head Lt. Gen. Alan Lynn in late 2017, it was three months before Lynn retired and Norton took over. DISA would not confirm when Skinner will start his new job.

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