Teri Takai leaped from the frying pan of overseeing IT for the cash-strapped state of California into the fire of becoming the Department of Defense's CIO, a position she took-on beginning Nov. 7 after the post had been left empty for almost 18 months. Deputy CIO Dave Wennergren, who had been fulfilling those responsibilities, had recently moved on to become the assistant deputy chief management officer at the DoD. In addition to her CIO role, Takai also temporarily served as acting assistant secretary of defense networks and information integration as several DoD organizations undergo restructuring under the plans of Robert Gates. That plan encompasses the assistant secretary's office, home of the DoD CIO position. Takai is experienced in consolidations, having led statewide initiatives in California and Michigan.