Artificial Intelligence (AI) needs, feeds, and thrives on data. Despite the torrents of valuable data available, many organizations remain behind the curve in harnessing its use. Cross-industry studies show that on average, less than half of an organization’s structured data is actively used in making decisions. For AI to create the value necessary to move health organizations forward there must be a recognition and action that treat all data as a strategic asset. Successful AI programs that span the needs of an enterprise ride on a solid foundation that is determined by the strength of an organization’s data estate. In creating and executing an AI strategy, some organizations focus on building a team of data scientists and top data talent to advance their goals. Health organizations that are serious about AI can no longer afford to treat data management as anything less than what it is–the linchpin for making intelligent health real and practical.