Connect. Learn. Disrupt.
It also seeks to improve the Army’s integration with industry, partners, and allies, underpin its ambitions to be a significant contributor to HMG’s Global Britain strategy, and deliver an “asymmetric Army for the Digital Age”.
Programme THEIA’s objectives are to:
Following on from our Programme THEIA webinar, attend this THEIA
09:00 Registration and networking
10:00 Admin and Opening Remarks
Richard Morgan, Founder, Chief Disruptor Defence
10:10 Delivering a Data-Centric Army from the Line of March: Risk and Reward
Major General John Collyer, Director Information and CIO, British Army
10:50 Break into workshop groups
11:00 Workshops 1 and 2
12:30 Networking lunch
13:30 The Land Cyber and Electromagnetic Activities (CEMA) Programme
Colonel Toby Courage, Programme Director, Land CEMA Programme, British Army
14:10 Coffee break and networking
14:40 Workshops 3 and 4
16:20 Programme THEIA update and insights
Brigadier Stefan Crossfield, Head of IX, CDO, Principal AI Officer, British Army
17:00 Strategic update and insights
Charlie Forte, CIO, Ministry of Defence
17:40 Closing remarks
17:50 Armed Forces Covenant signing
Emma Taylor, Founder & Managing Director, Chief Disruptor
Lieutenant General Tom Copinger-Symes CBE, Deputy Commander UK Strategic Command
18:00 Networking drinks
Major General Collyer was educated at Ermysted’s Grammar School in North Yorkshire and Welbeck Sixth Form College before commissioning into the Royal Signals. His early service was spent at Regimental Duty in Battlegroup, Brigade, Division, Corps and Joint Force formations and with Other Government Departments.
Following Junior and Initial Command and Staff courses, Major General Collyer commanded at Squadron and Regimental level and subsequently Joint Forces Cyber Group and 1st (United Kingdom) Signal Brigade. His staff appointments have included the MOD Operations Directorate, Defence Intelligence, Army Headquarters, Headquarters Allied Rapid Reaction Corps and the United States Security Coordinator HQ. In the deployed arena, he has operated in the Balkans, Iraq, Afghanistan and the Occupied Palestinian Territories. He holds a 1st Class Information Systems Engineering Degree with honours and a Masters in Defence Studies from King’s College London.
Following an assignment as Head Strategy, Capability and Development in the Army HQ Information Directorate, he was appointed the Army HQ’s Director of Information and Chief Information Officer in October 2021.
Colonel Toby Courage, Director Land CEMA Programme, British Army
Following commissioning in December 1998, Col Toby Courage served in 16 Air Assault Brigade, 3rd Armoured Division and 12 Mechanized Brigade.
His sub-unit command saw him working in support of the UK’s Allied Rapid Reaction Corps contribution to NATO. He then returned to staff as SO2 ISTAR within the British Army’s Command Support Development Centre, managing Electronic Warfare/Signals Intelligence capability integration. He later joined the newly-formed Joint Cyber Unit (Cheltenham) as SO2 J3, working as an ‘Operational Lead’ for Offensive Cyber operations.
On promotion to Lieutenant Colonel he attended Staff College before taking command of 15 Signal Regiment, during which he led the Army’s Cyber Protection Team pilot. Following an operational tour as Deputy Director J6 within the Operation INHERENT RESOLVE Combined Joint Headquarters, and a four-month assignment as SO1 Strategy at UK Strategic Command’s C4ISR Capability branch, he joined the UK’s Permanent Joint Headquarters on promotion as DACOS J6 Operations and Cyber. His current role is as Assistant Head Cyber and Electro-Magnetic Activities within Army Headquarters where he performs the role of Programme Director for the Land CEMA Programme.
Following attendance at Sandhurst Brig Stefan Crossfield was commissioned in to the REME in 1992. His initial assignment as a Lieutenant Colonel saw him working for Director Force Development ahead of the SDSR and then join the core Army 2020 team for 10 months.
Brig Crossfield took command of 6 Armoured Close Support Battalion REME in 2012 just before Op HERRICK 18. On his return he was selected for promotion to Colonel and temporarily acted as DCOS 3 (UK) Division.
Brig Crossfield has more recently delivered the narrative describing the military offer as COS to DPers and completed an Academic External Placement at Exeter University securing an MBA with Distinction in 2018. He served as DACOS YELLOWHAMMER in Jan 2019, completed a short tenure as DACOS Current Plans in HQ Home Command and upon promotion to Brigadier joined Army HQ as Head Information Exploitation (IX) in late 2020. As Hd IX, Brig Crossfield also fulfils the roles of CDO and Principal AI Officer for the British Army.
Brig Crossfield is a Chartered Engineer and a Fellow of the Institute of Mechanical Engineers. He is also a Chartered Manager and has a Masters Degree in Information Systems.
Charlie has 38 years industry experience gained from leading IT globally as Deputy Group Global CIO at BP, as CEO of Global IT Services at Prudential and as Interim CIO at Thames Water. He has worked as an independent consultant helping businesses transform their ability to exploit digital technology.
Charlie Forte was appointed the Chief Information Officer for the Ministry of Defence in January 2018. He is the primary advisor to the Defence Board on Information and Digital and is responsible for strategy and policy on the exploitation, operation, interoperability and protection of information and digital technology across the Ministry of Defence. This includes cyber security and resilience; the promotion of new ways of working, information technology-enabled innovation; and the delivery of effective IT services. Charlie is a member of the Defence Executive Committee and the Strategic Command Executive Committee.
Lt Gen Copinger-Symes spent his early career on operations with The Royal Green Jackets (now The Rifles) on operations in Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan; and in operational and strategy posts at the Permanent Joint Headquarters and the Ministry of Defence.
In 2014 he formed and commanded 1st Intelligence Surveillance & Reconnaissance Brigade, created to integrate the Army’s intelligence collection and exploitation capabilities. In 2017 he led the ‘Information Manoeuvre’ Project, commissioned by the Army’s Board to explore the benefits of integrating the Army’s information-centric and digital capabilities and to exploit digital technology with new ways of warfare.
In his next post, as a Major General, he commanded those capabilities, pioneering the Army’s response to a new era of great power competition, which culminated in his formation’s re-designation as 6th (UK) Division.
In 2019 he was appointed Director Strategy and Military Digitisation at Defence Digital, accelerating Defence’s digital transformation and increasing its adoption and exploitation of digital technology. And in May 22 took up the post of Deputy Commander UK Strategic Command on promotion to Lieutenant General.
He has been on the Chief Disruptor Members' Advisory Board since 2018.