By Light Professional IT Services LLC: Superlative Networking and Cybersecurity Expertise

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BG (Ret.) Donahue, Chief Operating Officer
Our national defense relies on a complex global infrastructure of interconnected information systems and networks that provide critical capabilities and enable all Department of Defense (DOD) functions. This collection of networks is referred to as the DOD Information Network, or the DODIN. Historically, these networks were managed in a decentralized manner with little operational oversight; however, the paradigm changed in 2009 when the DOD recognized cyberspace as an operational domain. This began the process of transitioning the DODIN from an administrative network largely under the purview of Chief Information Officers (CIOs) to an operational area under the authority of a Combatant Commander. At that time, BG Brian Donahue was serving as the United States Central CommandJ6. He was actively involved in cyberspace thought leadership, shaping the requirements to deploy and defend a variety of purpose-built networks in support of the warfighter in theater. During his subsequent assignment at the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA), BG Donahue brought this operational focus to expand the Agency’s defensive cyberspace operations (DCO) capabilities. Upon retirement and subsequent employment with By Light in 2013, he was asked by United States Cyber Command (USCYBERCOM) and DISAto assist developing a concept of operations for the largely deferred “Secure, Operate, and Defend the DODIN” mission area.

What started with two PowerPoint slides, ultimately developed into the concept of operations approved by DOD leadership to integrate DCO and DODIN Operations as part of USCYBERCOM’s full spectrum cyberspace operations. In the planning process, BG (Ret) Donahue identified significant issues with the existing operational command structure, which lead to the establishment of the Joint Force Headquarters – DODIN (JFHQ-DODIN); a revised command and control (C2) framework; and new authorities to compel unity of action to “Secure, Operate, and Defend the DODIN.”

Soon after JFHQ-DODIN was established within a revised C2 framework and with new directive authority, it was challenged by the scope, scale, and complexity of its mission.
JFHQ-DODIN’s span of control includes ten Combatant Commands, five Services, and twenty-eight DOD Agencies and Field Activities. The cyberspace terrain encompasses the totality of DOD cyberspace, which includes all DOD networks, enterprise services, weapon systems, programs of record, IT platforms, and ICS/SCADA technologies. JFHQ-DODIN must also operate simultaneously as a supporting and supported command in support of all four core DOD functions; Joint Operations, Service “Man, Train, and Equip” functions, Intelligence functions; and Departmental Business and technology functions. Today, JFHQ-DODIN is fully operational capable (FOC). BG (Ret.) Donahue and his By Light team, augmenta Leidos-led effort to provide the contract workforce for the JFHQ-DODIN. By Light’s core expertise provides the foundational knowledge base for this one-of-a-kind headquarters with a diverse and complex mission, and together, they provide operational and technical solutions to the many challenges in this mission area.

By Light, founded in 2002 as a small business, provides a variety of information technology and cybersecurity services to the US Government and commercial customers. They have evolved into a large company with over 700 employees and several hundred million dollars in revenue. “We provide IT and cybersecurity services across the board, supporting the VA, combatant commands, military Services, and other organizations in both the Federal and commercial sectors,” explains BG (Ret.) Donahue, Chief Operating Officer of By Light Professional IT Services.

By Light does provide material solutions, such as the Tactical RoIP Inter-Communications System (TRICS) developed to support special operations organizations at Fort Bragg; however, it is their full range of IT and cybersecurity services that demonstrates their depth and far ranging technical expertise. They provide turnkey IT solutions, implement secure architectures, integrate software and applications and provide a variety of cybersecurity services. For example, By Light now applies its 15 years of technical and operational experience to provide Red Team, penetration testing, inspections, and HITRUST certified assessment services. According to BG (Ret.) Donahue, “the real value that By Light offers is our unique expertise planning and conducting operations in cyberspace.”

By Light Professional IT Services LLC

McLean, VA

BG (Ret.) Donahue, Chief Operating Officer

Founded in 2002, By Light Professional IT Services LLC provides a broad array of comprehensive services and solutions for DoD, Civilian, Commercial, and International markets. Their services include program management, systems design, and engineering, installation services, satellite communications, information assurance, wireless communication, rapid prototyping, optical networks, federal healthcare, training, and integration center. The company driven by a management team that leverages real-world expertise from the defense, intelligence, federal healthcare, and commercial sectors, provides reliable, efficient, and cost-effective IT solutions and a full range of hardware and software engineering services