GDIT opens new cyber facility at Port San Antonio

By Iris Gonzalez
Photo shows the inside of a cyber facility with computer screens and three men working at computers. Photo credit: Department of Defense

General Dynamics Information Technology (GDIT), a business unit of General Dynamics (NYSE:GD), announced Tuesday morning the opening of its new cyber facility at Port San Antonio. GDIT delivers consulting, technology, and mission services to major U.S. government, defense, and intelligence agencies.

Technology partners and other stakeholders attended the Oct. 10 opening of the new facility, which has over 11,000 square feet (sq. ft.). There is 3,000 sq. ft. configured for unclassified information processing. An additional 8,000 sq. ft. can be set up for classified work as demand for GDIT’s specialized expertise expands. GDIT expects to hire up to 55 people, with additional positions expected as the company’s operations expand in the region.

GDIT will use the space at Port San Antonio to develop advanced cyber and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance solutions (collectively called C5ISR) to support the Sixteenth Air Force (Air Forces Cyber) headquartered on the Port campus and at neighboring Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland. C5ISR stands for Command, Control, Computers, Communications, Cyber, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance. Driven by rising demand for integrated solutions due to security concerns caused by territorial conflicts and global terrorism, the C5ISR industry is expected to reach $188 billion by 2030.

GDIT’s new cyber facility on Davy Crockett Street at the Port is adjacent to the Alamo Regional Security Operations Center (ARSOC), a joint security operations center where municipal and CPS Energy security teams can work side-by-side around-the-clock in one of only three multi-agency cybersecurity facilities in the U.S.

The Cybersecurity Manufacturing Innovation Institute (CyManII), led by The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), is also located next to GDIT’s newest cyber facility. CyManII’s collaboration includes working closely with experts from the Department of Energy (DOE)’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (advanced manufacturing cybersecurity), Idaho National Laboratory (industrial control systems and physical infrastructure cybersecurity), and Sandia National Laboratory (cybersecurity of supply chain management).

The location of GDIT’s new cyber facility is intentional, according to Peter Lambert, GDIT’s vice president for C5ISR solutions for the Air Force.

“GDIT has a host of capabilities in cybersecurity and communications, especially in how to safeguard information in manufacturing and critical infrastructure,” Lambert said. “This new facility will help GDIT grow as a pillar in the overall ecosystem, not just providing support for the defense community, but by contributing to systems integration across essential functions.”

Lambert told Startups San Antonio that working collaboratively to protect essential functions and operations against cyber threats can help create more opportunities for local talent and cybersecurity-focused vendors. As GDIT produces solutions for its primary federal customers, “we also acquire solutions via partnerships with vendors and suppliers for the government. That means we’ll be able to get more San Antonio talent in front of the federal customers and manufacturing clients,” Lambert added.

Because this new facility is co-located with GDIT’s customers — 16th Air Force and the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center — GDIT will be working on advanced defensive cyber solutions for customers. GDIT is interested in smaller businesses specializing in artificial intelligence, 5G software development, defensive cyber capabilities, and zero-trust architecture software that enables secure access to everything by everyone.

In 2023, GDIT doubled its investment in these same focus areas, pouring more capital into capabilities the Pentagon deems emerging and critical to the future of warfighting.

“We’re interested in bringing those capabilities to our customers,” Lambert said. “This space provides GDIT collaborative opportunities for working with the private sector and our customers, which helps us optimize opportunities to work with smaller businesses in San Antonio and beyond.”

Brian Sheridan, GDIT’s senior vice president for defense, said, “San Antonio is a strategic cyber hub for the Air Force and is the second-largest cybersecurity community. Given its incredible potential, we see a great opportunity to leverage our cybersecurity expertise and grow our footprint. Our investments will further expand the city’s technology workforce and drive regional innovation.”

Port San Antonio’s chief executive officer (CEO) Jim Perschbach is counting on these opportunities that larger defense contractors like GDIT can create when collaborating with the public and private sectors, including academic partners such as UTSA.

“I hope people recognize what’s happened at the Port over the past several weeks, with major partners like Leidos and now GDIT investing in our community,” Perschbach said.  “We wanted to create a vibrant community where people can channel their talents, make strategic connections, and collaborate to develop the latest technologies that make our world safer, more productive, and more resilient.”

The featured photo is of a cybersecurity facility. Photo credit: Department of Defense.

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