Three months after being named as FirstNet’s CEO, Mike Poth today announced that he has decided to keep the entire FirstNet senior leadership team—most of whom officially were serving the roles in an acting capacity—on a permanent basis.

Solidifying the senior leadership helps position FirstNet as a “no-risk” organization, which should make potential partners more comfortable about working with FirstNet, Poth said.

 “The message is that there is no more ‘acting,’” Poth said during today’s FirstNet board meeting, which was webcast. “I have gone through painstaking measures and interviewed a lot of people. With great pleasure, I announce that this is FirstNet leadership team going forward.”

Members of FirstNet’s senior leadership team are:

  • President TJ Kennedy,
  • Chief Counsel Jason Karp,
  • Chief Technology Officer Jeff Bratcher,
  • Chief Information Officer Jim Gwinn,
  • Chief Administrative Officer Frank Freeman,
  • Chief Financial Officer Kim Farington, who is now a full-time FirstNet employee after previously working on detail from the Department of Personnel Management (OPM), and
  • Chief Procurement Officer David Dasher, a former Internal Revenue Service procurement employee who is the lone new member of the senior leadership team.

With the exception of Dasher, all members of the senior leadership team were fulfilling the responsibilities of their current titles. However, prior to this week, only Gwinn and Freeman were listed as the permanent hire for the senior-leadership position.

Poth said he interviewed more than 200 people for the FirstNet leadership position during his first 90 days as the FirstNet CEO, but he chose to keep the existing team that had been running the organization’s day-to-day operations before he arrived.

“This is the team that is going to work with the FirstNet board , with the FirstNet community and with the partners to make this a reality. I'm excited that we have them,” Poth said. “With our FirstNet team—our employees and our contractors that this team leads—I would challenge any agency to a tug-of-war, because I think my team can beat anyone, and this is because of the leadership of these people.”