by CIO Staff

VA CIO McFarland Resigns

Mar 15, 20062 mins

The Department of Veteran Affairs’ (VA) Chief Information Officer Robert McFarland has resigned, effective April 30, Federal Computer Week (FCW) reports.

James Nicolson, VA secretary, made the announcement yesterday, stating that McFarland would be moving back to his hometown of Austin, Texas to retire, FCW reports.

McFarland, a former Dell executive, took on the VA CIO job in January 2004 after coming out of retirement, FCW reports.

According to FCW, a VA press release announcing McFarland’s resignation said, “Under his leadership and initiative, VA has strengthened its position as the world leader in the development and use of an electronic medical records system, and has made great progress in modernizing the department’s vast Information and Technology system.”

Upon arrival at VA, McFarland began an IT management consolidation initiative to decrease the amount of cash the department was doling out in the name of IT, according to FCW, and he played a key role in shifting full control of VA’s $1.2 billion IT budget to the office of the CIO.

“I believe this resignation may be a catalyst to get other things done. I served a role here as a change agent, and when you serve the role as change agent, quite often you get a contentious environment, and sometimes that contentious environment is not up to getting the things we want done,” McFarland said, according to FCW.

McFarland plans on spending his time relaxing and fishing for trout in Utah after he retires, FCW reports.

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