Headshot of person/agency from Drug Enforcement Agency

Alex Smith

CTO, Drug Enforcement Agency

Federal Leadership of the Year 

Like many government agencies, the DEA is in the midst of working to transform its legacy systems to meet modern challenges. CTO Alex Smith’s biggest accomplishment this year was putting the final touches on the agency’s three-year strategic planning to ensure continued modernization. “Our [strategy] will be adaptive to emerging changes, external and internal influences and provide flexibility while achieving long-term goals and satisfying organizational goals in support of the DEA mission,” he said. This year’s biggest lesson for him was how many external forces can change the course of internal IT planning. The pandemic, for one, has forced much change across the DEA and in its IT shop. Despite the changes, effort continues to push for emerging technology integration in 2021, he said.