Like a digital wildfire spreading across the globe, more companies and organizations continue to hire or promote executives into newly created chief data officer (CDO) positions. But that doesn't mean it's quick work to grab the CDO title.

A case in point: The United Kingdom named Mike Bracken as its CDO this week. But take a look at Bracken's background -- deep with digital technology and data expertise -- and it's clear he's been a CDO-in-waiting for quite some time.

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