New Cumberland, PA, –
Name: Steven Borgesi
Organization: Enterprise Engineering
Years of Service: I have been with DLA for 29 years.
What is your job title, and what do you do, specifically?
I am an Enterprise Data Architect working in the J62 Enterprise Engineering division. In this role, my primary objective is to help modernize the data architecture within DLA. Our current data architecture is based on older sets of best practices focused on processing transactions, delivering operational reporting and descriptive analytics. Our future data architecture will be built to take advantage of the computing power, storage capacity, speed and elasticity found within cloud environments and be tuned for supporting DLA’s artificial intelligence/machine learning use cases, modern development, security and operations, standard application program interfaces, low code development environments, and advanced analytics (such as predictive and prescriptive analytics).
What is your background, including experience and credentials? How does your background help you be successful in your current role?
At DLA, I’ve been working with data in some form or another for my entire career. I started out as a computer programmer, first working with mainframe transactional/reporting systems and their transition to our current Enterprise Business Systems (EBS) suite of capabilities. Eventually, I cycled through the roles of system analyst, project manager and supervisor - ultimately becoming the division chief over the EBS business warehouse team responsible for DLA’s enterprise data warehouse and the modernization of its associated data architecture and analytical tools. While those experiences provided me with expertise in the operational side of maintaining and improving our data architecture, I then transitioned into a more strategic role as DLA’s enterprise data strategist, first within DLA’s enterprise architecture team and then transitioning to a position under the chief data officer as her principal technical advisor on the enterprise data & analytics strategy, roadmap and governance. Those positions afforded me with a more functional, strategic view of DLA’s modernization efforts within the larger DOD context and rounded out my perspective on data architecture and the best way to modernize it (from both a strategic as well as operational perspective).
What aspect(s) of your current job gives you the most personal satisfaction? Why?
One component of my job that gives me the most personal satisfaction is the exploration of emerging technologies for potential use in DLA’s modernized data architecture. I consider myself to be a lifelong learner and relish being able to research new capabilities, install and test new software, and meet with vendors about their solutions to our current issues. It often forces me to challenge my old assumptions and shift my perspectives, trading old paradigms for new ones.
What are some of your passions outside of work?
I spend hours browsing at the local library’s book sale finding hidden gems to read – usually returning with twenty more books to squeeze into a bookshelf already past its capacity. I love exploring new and different ways to incorporate chocolate into my diet. The latest experiment was substituting shaved dark chocolate for the cinnamon normally used within my favorite Mardi Gras king cake recipe - this may become a permanent change. I love planning for, and then heading out on, lengthy road trips. My record was a five-week, 11,000-mile road trip around the entire continental United States with my wife and daughters. Our favorite memory was sledding down the giant sand dunes in White Sands, NM.
What advice do you have for DLA employees?
Never be afraid to reach above and outside of your current job/position description to add value to DLA in another area that could benefit from your expertise. Volunteer for working groups that will not only benefit from your participation, but also provide you with an expanded understanding of DLA’s overall mission. Those experiences will expand your possibilities for career advancement and enhance your ability to support our warfighters.
What other self-initiated efforts have you worked on?
While working for our Chief Data Officer, Teresa Smith, I recognized that DLA had a capability gap – we were missing an enterprise metadata management capability. As such, I championed a market research study on technologies that could fill that gap as well as acting as the technical liaison on a corresponding research & development project aimed at prototyping that capability for DLA. As data architect, I am now collaborating with the CDO and R&D teams to determine the best method for acquiring and implementing that capability for DLA.