Scott Armstrong is a successful executive focused on delivering enterprise software, cyber-security, and SaaS products to market. At Exostar, Scott is responsible for solutions spanning risk management, CMMC, as well as supply chain illumination. He has deep experience developing solutions for vertical markets such as Public Sector and Federal, Healthcare, Aerospace and Defense, and the Critical Infrastructure Industries, with a unique expertise in executing on Government-Industry partnerships and initiatives for market advantages.
Mark Stacey is the Director of Professional Services at Dragos, Inc. Mark oversees the delivery and execution of advisory services, tabletop exercises, network and device penetration testing, and proactive threat hunting services provided by Dragos for ICS and SCADA networks worldwide. Prior to joining Dragos, Mark was a member of RSA’s Incident Response and Hunting team for 5 years where he provided IR, threat hunting, and forensic services globally. Mark also spent 7 years with the Department of Energy (DOE) performing cyber and intelligence analysis for government clients and agencies.
Jessica Ohnona is the Executive Vice President of Data Science at Cynalytica – a cyber security company that specializes in helping clients protect critical national infrastructure, securely enable Industry 4.0 and accelerate digital transformation objectives. As one of the company’s founding employees, Jessica has been instrumental in driving growth by shaping its go-to-market strategy, operations and marketing arms that span across its US headquarters and Northern Ireland office. She currently oversees the data science department responsible for driving product innovation using ML/AI to protect firms against threats on industry control systems (ICS).
Prior to this, Jessica worked in business strategy, sales in Europe and the USA and as a data science consultant at The George Washington University. She has significant work experience in commercialization of technologies.
She holds a GIAC security certification: GCDA, a MS in Data Science from The George Washington University and a BSBA with a double major in Global Business and Entrepreneurship from Suffolk University.
Josh Lospinoso, Ph.D. is an entrepreneur with deep expertise in cybersecurity, data science, and system software engineering. He’s founder/CEO of Shift5, an OEM OT cybersecurity company. In 2012, he co-founded RedOwl Analytics, an insider threat detection platform acquired by Raytheon/Forcepoint in 2017.
Josh is a US Army veteran, having served 10 years as a cyber officer leading teams to build dozens of elite hacking tools for the National Security Agency’s Tailored Access Operations, Army Cyber Command, and the Cyber National Mission Force.
Josh is the author of C++ Crash Course (No Starch Press, 2019), dozens of peer-reviewed journal articles spanning multiple disciplines, and multiple patents. He is a graduate of US Army Ranger School, and he holds multiple degrees the United States Military Academy and the University of Oxford, where he was a Rhodes Scholar.
Gula Tech Adventures
Ron Gula is President at Gula Tech Adventures which focuses on cyber technology, strategy and policy. Since 2017, GTA has invested in dozens of cyber start-ups and funds and supported multiple cyber nonprofits and projects. From 2002 to 2016, Gula was the co-founder and CEO of Tenable Network Security. He helped grow the company to 20,000 customers, raise $300m in venture capital and grow revenues to $100m, setting up the company for an IPO in 2018. Prior to Tenable, Gula was a cyber industry pioneer and developed one of the first commercial network intrusion detection systems called Dragon, ran risk mitigation for the first cloud company, was deploying network honeypots in the mid 90s for the DOD, was a penetration tester for the NSA, and got to participate in some of the nation’s first cyber exercises. Ron is involved in a variety of cyber nonprofits and think tanks including Defending Digital Campaigns, the Center for Internet Security, the National Security Institute and the Wilson Center.
Michael Rothschild is senior director of OT solutions at Tenable. He is an advisory board member at Rutgers University and is a past professor of marketing. He also has a number of published works in marketing and healthcare. In his spare time Rothschild is a first aid instructor and volunteers as an EMT.
Northrop Grumman Enterprise Services
Dr. Phyllis Schneck is vice president and chief information security officer (CISO) for Northrop Grumman. In this role, she oversees the company’s global cybersecurity strategy and policies and is responsible for the digital security of the company’s products, services and infrastructures.
Schneck has 20 years of government and private-sector experience in senior cybersecurity positions. She joined Northrop Grumman in 2019 from Promontory, a division of IBM, where she led the firm’s cybersecurity practice as managing director and global leader of Cyber Solutions.
Prior to her tenure with Promontory, Schneck served as the deputy undersecretary for cybersecurity and communications for the Department of Homeland Security, where she led responses to cybersecurity threats against corporations, civilians and the government. During this time, she led the defensive cybersecurity operational mission to mitigate and respond to cyber threats across the federal civilian government and private sector. She supported the department’s mission of strengthening the security and resilience of the nation’s critical infrastructure, working with all areas of the department, government agencies, law enforcement and the private sector. Schneck led the transformation of signature technology applying analytics to the central cyber protection that the DHS provides to civilian agencies.
Schneck also served as chief technology officer for the global public sector at McAfee, where she was responsible for products and services used by governments to counter global cyber threats and maintain industrial and telecommunications security. She led the development of the firm’s crowdsourced real-time cyber threat intelligence and analytics used to protect critical infrastructure, played a key role in developing McAfee’s cybersecurity policy position, and on several occasions, testified before Congress on cybersecurity technology and policy.
Schneck was a member of the Center for Strategic and International Studies Commission on Cybersecurity as part of the 44th President’s administration. She was chairman of the board of directors of the National Cyber-Forensics and Training Alliance, a partnership between corporations, government and law enforcement for using cyber analysis to combat international cybercrime. Schneck was also vice chairman of the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s advisory board on information security and privacy, and she served for eight years as national chairman of the board of directors of the FBI’s public-private InfraGard program. She has briefed and worked with several foreign governments to form partnerships with the U.S. for information sharing, infrastructure protection, and cybersecurity. Schneck holds several information-security and technology patents.
Schneck earned her doctorate in computer science from the Georgia Institute of Technology, as well as both a master’s in computer science and a bachelor’s in computer science and mathematics from the Johns Hopkins University.
George Mason University
George Mason University President Gregory N. Washington leads the largest and most diverse public university in Virginia, a Tier 1 research university as categorized by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. He became Mason’s eighth president on July 1, 2020.
Dr. Washington, the former dean of the Henry Samueli School of Engineering at the University of California, Irvine (UCI), and former interim dean of the College of Engineering at Ohio State University, is regarded nationally as a strategic and collaborative solutions-oriented leader who is committed to providing opportunities for students of all backgrounds.
In his seven years at UCI, Dr. Washington expanded undergraduate enrollment in the engineering school by 1,100 students and graduate enrollment by more than 200. He led a freshman experiential learning initiative that resulted in more than 60 percent of undergraduate engineering students conducting research. He established the University of California’s first student makerspace and helped establish the OC STEM Initiative, one of the nation’s first STEM ecosystems, which impacts more than 100,000 students each year in Orange County, California. He also launched a regional effort to help community college students transfer to four-year institutions.
Committed to multidisciplinary scholarship and research, Dr. Washington created new graduate and undergraduate programs with the UCI business and humanities schools and led the development of the Horiba Institute for Mobility and Connectivity to advance next-generation advanced mobility systems. He played an integral role in the development of the planned Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Building, a facility that will expand UCI’s research capacity.
Dr. Washington recruited and hired one of the most diverse engineering faculty cohorts in the country, with more than 40% of his 68 hires being women or from underrepresented groups. He’s raised more than $100M in public and private philanthropy for the engineering school, including more than $15.5 million in gifts targeted to reach a more diverse student populations.
The first African American dean of engineering at any University of California campus, and the first African American president at Mason, Dr. Washington established an Office of Access and Inclusion at UCI to enhance campus life for all students and chaired the Task Force on Ensuring a Positive Climate for the Campus’ Black Community.
Dr. Washington launched his academic career in 1995 as an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering in the College of Engineering at Ohio State University. He became an associate professor in 2000 and a professor in 2004. He began serving as the college’s associate dean for research in 2005 and also founded and led the university’s Institute for Energy and the Environment. From 2008 to 2011, Dr. Washington served as interim dean of the Ohio State engineering school, one of the largest in the country.
Dr. Washington is an accomplished researcher and educator who specializes in dynamic systems, with an emphasis in the modeling and control of smart material structures and systems. He is the author of more than 160 technical publications in journals, edited volumes and conference proceedings. At Ohio State, Dr. Washington received the Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching, the Harrison Faculty Award for Excellence in Engineering Education and the Lumley Research Award. He also received the National Science Foundation (NSF) Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Award.
A prolific researcher having raised more than $21M Co-PI and $8M PI, Dr. Washington has conducted research for the NSF, NASA, General Motors, the Air Force Research Laboratory, and the U.S. Army Research Office, among others. He has served as a member of the U.S. Air Force Scientific Advisory Board, NSF Engineering Advisory Committee, Institute for Defense Analyses, the Octane Board of Directors and other boards. Dr. Washington also is past chair of the Engineering Deans Council of the American Society for Engineering Education and a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers.
A first-generation college graduate, Dr. Washington is a New York City native who attended high school in North Carolina. He earned bachelor’s (1989) and master’s degrees (1991) and his PhD (1994), all in mechanical engineering, at North Carolina State University. He is a member of the N.C. State Engineering Foundation’s Board of Directors.
Fairfax County Economic Development Authority
Victor Hoskins joined the Fairfax County (Va.) Economic Development Authority as president and CEO on August 5, 2019. Previously, he was the director of Arlington (Va.) Economic Development since 2015. In that role he is most known for leading the team that successfully attracted Amazon HQ2 to Arlington County, a deal that will bring between 25,000 and 37,850 Amazon jobs to Arlington, stimulate creation of another 75,000 jobs in the Washington region, and generate between $3.2 and $4.8 billion in revenue for the Commonwealth of Virginia.
Under Mr. Hoskins’ leadership, Arlington County also successfully implemented an Innovation Strategy that moved it toward technology and private-sector commercialization. Other successes in Arlington include Nestlé, Grant Thornton, Lidl, MasterCard, Deloitte, PBS and Opower-Oracle.
Previously, Mr. Hoskins worked in private real estate investment on Wall Street. He also served as deputy mayor of economic development for the District of Columbia, during which time he led the turnaround of the District’s economy with projects such as The Wharf and City Center. During his career, his work has resulted in almost 375,000 jobs, and he has led the teams that negotiated more than 700 major business deals resulting in billions of dollars in private investment.
Since he arrived at the FCEDA, Hoskins has received the 2019 Ronald Kirby Award for Collaborative Leadership from the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments. Virginia Business magazine named him one of the “100 people to meet in 2020,” and the Washington Business Journal included him in its “Power 100 class of 2019.” Previously, the Washington Business Journal recognized him for his role in securing the Amazon and Nestle deals, and the D.C. Building Industry Association recognized him in 2014 and 2013 for leadership in economic development.
He holds a master’s degree in city planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a bachelor’s degree with honors from Dartmouth College.
Carmen, a retired Senior Federal Executive with 32 years’ experience in the Intelligence Community, is a recognized national and international expert on intelligence analysis, strategic thinking, diversity of thought, and innovation and intrapreneurs in the public sector. She is the co-author of the book: Rebels At Work: A Handbook for Leading Change from Within and of the landmark Deloitte University Press paper on Diversity’s New Fronter: Diversity of Thought and the Future of the Workplace. Her story as a heretic and change agent at CIA is featured in Wharton School professor Adam Grant’s bestseller Originals: How Non-Conformists Move the World.
Some of her most recent presentations include speaking at South by Southwest 2018 on The Mediocrity Trap and on Critical Thinking at SXSW 2017, to Canadian Federal senior executives about Diversity of Thought and Rebel Thinking 2018, to the California STEM Education conference 2017, at the Business Innovation Factory 2017, and multiple times at GovLoop’s NextGen Leadership summit.
From 2005-2007 Carmen was part of the executive team that led the CIA’s Analysis Directorate; in her last assignment before retiring she oversaw the CIA’s Lessons Learned program and led the Agency’s first efforts to address the challenges posed by social networks, digital ubiquity, and the emerging culture of collaboration. She was a leader on diversity issues at the CIA, serving on equity boards at all organizational levels and across Directorates. She was the first CIA executive to conceptualize many IT applications now used by analysts, including blogs, online production, collaborative tools, and Intellipedia, a project she personally greenlighted; as a senior executive, she began using in 2005 social networking and blogs to reach her diverse workforce. Upon her retirement from CIA, she received the Distinguished Career Intelligence Medal. From 2011—2015, Carmen was a member of Deloitte Federal Consulting where she served as senior advisor and mentor to Deloitte’s flagship innovation program, GovLab.
Carmen describes herself as Puerto Rican by birth and Texan by nationality. She likes to garden and cook things that she has grown. You can follow her on Twitter @milouness and visit her two blogs: recoveringfed.com and rebelsatwork.com
Evee Security Consulting Group
Gary Evee, is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Evee Security Consulting Group. The vision of Evee Security Consulting Group is to be the most successful cybersecurity provider in securing organizations and companies from cyberattacks from bad actors. Evee Security’s mission is to enable clients to reduce risk by proactively developing a more secure and resilient cybersecurity environment.
Evee is a 25 year technology industry veteran. Most recently, he served as an executive inside of IBM’s Cybersecurity Business unit, during which time he led the sales, business development and go market for IBM’s mobile and financial services cybersecurity solutions. Before this, he was the Executive chief of staff for the General Manager of IBM Security, helping to lead the growth of IBM Security significantly faster than the overall security market to become the number one enterprise security provider in the world with almost $2B of annual revenue.
Evee has a proven track record of managing and scaling, new enterprises globally. Evee also held several leadership positions during his 22 years at IBM in the area of sales, business development and operations.
He has served as a technology and cybersecurity advisor to a number of Higher Education institutions including Bridgewater State University, Cambridge College, Massasoit Community College, and Johnson C. Smith, and Endicott College. He believes that collaboration between academia, industry, government and community is critical to driving innovation and creating pathways to opportunities for the underserved.
Evee was responsible for holding the very first Cybersecurity and Technology diversity conference in the Commonwealth. He has been a staunch voice and advocate for Diversity and Inclusion in the area of STEM.
Evee holds a B.A in Political Science from Hampton University, Hampton VA. In addition to his services in the technology industry, he is also a member of the board of trustees for Dedham Savings Bank and MassInsight.
With over 16 years of IT and cybersecurity experience, focused primarily on Cyber Threat Intelligence (CTI), V. Susan Peediyakkal draws on her significant knowledge from working with various intelligence operations in the federal government and international commercial domains. Peediyakkal’s career began in the US Air Force where she has served 19 years, both active and reserve. She was most recently the Director of Advisory Services and Threat Intelligence for Luta Security
Peediyakkal is the founder and director of BSides Sacramento. She serves on the board for Mental Health Hackers as the Chief Wellness Officer, an ambassador for the Women’s Society of Cyberjutsu, sits on EC-Council’s Global Advisory Board for CTI Analysts, and is part of the SANS Summit steering committee. In Februrary 2020, she completed her CISO certification at Carnegie Mellon University. Peediyakkal was named a 2020 technologist fellow for the National Security Institute (NSI) at George Mason University and appointed to the advisory board for CSU Chico’s Executive Program.
In March 2018, Peediyakkal was named one of “10 Women in Security You May Not Know But Should” by one of the most widely-read cyber security news sites on the Web, Dark Reading. She is a 500-hour Registered Yoga Teacher (RYT) based in Yoga Therapy and is certified in Mental Health First Aid (MHFA). She enjoys traveling, movies, and teaching yoga in her free time. Find her on twitter: @v33na.
Hakluyt & Co.
Mr. Ledgett has four decades of intelligence and cyber experience, including 29 years with the National Security Agency (NSA), where he served as Deputy Director from January 2014 until his retirement in April 2017. He was the Agency’s chief operating officer, responsible for providing foreign intelligence and protecting the nation’s most important national security-related networks and information.
Ledgett led NSA’s Media Leaks Task Force, responsible for the totality of the Agency’s efforts following the unauthorized disclosure of classified information in June 2013. Previously he led the NSA’s 24/7 Threat Operations Center (NTOC), responsible for identifying and countering cyber threats to our national security systems. Ledgett was the Intelligence Community’s first National Intelligence Manager for Cyber, serving as principal advisor to the Director of National Intelligence on all cyber matters. He was also the DNI’s Director for Collection, overseeing all of the U.S. Intelligence Community’s collection programs.
Previous jobs at NSA included leading global collection and cryptanalytic operations, global language and analytic operations, and all NSA activities in the Pacific area. He was an instructor and course developer at the National Cryptologic School and an adjunct instructor at the National Intelligence University. Ledgett spent nearly 11 years in the U.S. Army as a cryptologist.
Ledgett is a Senior Advisor for Hakluyt Cyber. In addition he is a Senior Visiting Fellow at The MITRE Corporation, a Director on the Board of M&T Bank, a Trustee of the Institute for Defense Analyses, a Distinguished Visiting Professor of Cyber Studies at the US Naval Academy, a member of the National Academy of Sciences Intelligence Community Studies Board, a member of the National Infrastructure Advisory Council, and serves on several corporate and startup advisory boards.
GEN Keith Alexander (Ret.), Founder, Chairman & Co-CEO of IronNet Cybersecurity, is one of the foremost authorities on cybersecurity in the world. A four-star Army general, GEN Alexander was previously the highest-ranked military official of USCYBERCOM, NSA/CSS, where he led these DoD agencies during the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq when attempted cyber attacks against the U.S. were on the rise.
In recognition of cyber’s increasing importance, President Barack Obama and Defense Secretary Robert Gates appointed GEN Alexander as the first commander of USCYBERCOM, a newly created military institution charged with defending the nation’s security in cyberspace against sophisticated cyber threats to businesses and government operations in an increasingly interconnected world.
A leader with vision and a pragmatic approach to tackling the ever-changing cyber threat landscape, GEN Alexander built IronNet to bring this knowledge and experience to the private sector and fill in a critical gap between cyber threats and available security technology. IronNet provides best-in-class cyber defense based on complex behavioral modeling, big-data analytics and advanced computing capability.
GEN Alexander holds a B.S. from the U.S. Military Academy, an M.S. in Business Administration from Boston University and M.S. degrees in Systems Technology, Physics and National Security Strategy.
Assistant Professor of Law and Director of the National Security Law and Policy Program, Antonin Scalia Law School, George Mason University
Jamil N. Jaffer is the Founder and Executive Director of the National Security Institute, and an Assistant Professor of Law and Director of the National Security Law & Policy Program at the Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University. Jaffer is also Senior Vice President for Strategy, Partnerships & Corporate Development at IronNet Cybersecurity, a technology products startup founded by Gen (ret.) Keith B. Alexander, the former Director of the National Security Agency and Founding Commander of U.S. Cyber Command. In his role at IronNet, Jaffer leads all of the company’s strategic and technology partnership efforts, including developing go-to-market and technology integration plans with some of the largest cloud platforms and cybersecurity companies in the market, evaluating potential acquisition targets, and developing overall corporate strategy and thought leadership around collective security and collaborative defense in the cyber arena. In addition, Jaffer is an advisor to Beacon Global Strategies, a strategic advisory firm; 4iQ, a deep and dark web intelligence startup; Duco, a technology platform startup that connects corporations with geopolitical and international business experts; and Amber, a digital authentication and verification startup.
Among other things, Jaffer currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Greater Washington Board of Trade, the Board of Advisors for the Global Cyber Alliance, and the Advisory Board of the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies’ Center on Cyber and Tech Innovation, and is a member of the Center for a New American Security’s Artificial Intelligence and National Security Task Force and the CNAS Digital Freedom Forum. Jaffer is also affiliated with Stanford University’s Center for International Security and Cooperation.
Prior to his current positions, Jaffer served on Capitol Hill in a variety of roles, including on the leadership team of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and as a senior staff member of the House Intelligence Committee. Jaffer also previously served in the Bush Administration in a number of positions, including on the leadership team of the Justice Department’s National Security Division and in the White House as an Associate Counsel to President George W. Bush. Jaffer also served as a law clerk to Justice Neil M. Gorsuch of the U.S. Supreme Court and Judge Edith H. Jones of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, was a Visiting Fellow at the Hoover Institution from 2016-2019, taught classes at the George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs and the National Intelligence University, and holds degrees with honors from UCLA, the University of Chicago Law School, and the United States Naval War College.
The Crypsis Group
Bret Padres is the Chief Executive Officer of The Crypsis Group. He has more than 25 years of experience in information security, digital forensics, law enforcement, electronic discovery, and counterintelligence. Over the course of his career, Bret has responded to, investigated, and remediated some of history’s most notorious retail and state-sponsored data breaches, and he has advised legal teams on issues resulting from them. In addition, he has testified as a digital forensics expert in a number of trials, including an espionage case in federal court.
Padres began his career as a computer programmer and later became a Special Agent in the U.S. Air Force Office of Special Investigations, where he was the lead agent on numerous national and international computer intrusion investigations. He also conducted computer forensic examinations for criminal investigations involving child pornography, homicide, narcotics, and violent crime.
He went on to serve as the Chief of Research and Development in the Computer Crimes Unit for the U.S. Postal Service Office of the Inspector General, where he conducted investigations and implemented new computer crime analysis and prevention technologies. In this capacity, he also acted as the liaison to the Central Intelligence Agency on a national software development project.
In the private sector, Padres was most recently a Managing Director at Stroz Friedberg, a leading global risk management firm, where he ran its Cyber Resilience practice. While managing a team responsible for intrusion investigations, security risk assessments, penetration tests, and data breach response, he maintained an active case load and led a team responsible for authoring several forensic tools. Padres was also the Director of Incident Response for Mandiant (later acquired by FireEye), where he responded to and resolved high-risk intrusions for government agencies and Fortune 500 companies. And he served as the Director of Cyber Operations at Athena Innovative Solutions, where he ran network surveillance and intrusion detection counterintelligence operations for the company’s U.S. government clients.
Padres holds a Bachelor of Science degree in computer information systems from Excelsior College and holds a number of professional certifications. He has developed several highly-regarded open source digital forensic tools and co-hosts an Internet radio show, where he interviews industry experts and explores topics related to digital forensics, network security, and computer crime.
President, FAIR Institute
As President and CEO of RiskLens, Nicola (Nick) Sanna is responsible for the definition and the execution of the company strategy that established RiskLens as the market leader in cyber risk quantification. Sanna is also the Founder of the FAIR Institute, a non-profit expert organization dedicated to advancing the discipline of measuring and managing information and operational risk, that was named one of the 3 most influential industry organizations of the last 30 years.
Sanna brings over 25 years of experience in helping organizations leverage technology innovation to drive better business outcomes, with prior roles as CEO of Netuitive and e-Security. Sanna is fluent in five languages and received a masters degree in Economics and Trade from the University of Rome La Sapienza.
Leon Johnson is an experienced penetration tester whose qualifications include having ten plus years in the field of security. Johnson helped establish the first state funded Network Security Operating Center (NSOC) penetration testing division. Here he was one of at max four individuals that provided penetration testing for the whole state of Texas.
Johnson helped with the inception of the National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (NCCDC) by creating and running the score engine software used to score and run the services part of the competition while working with the Center for Infrastructure Assurance and Security (CIAS). He has spoken numerous times at events and colleges on the topics of information security. He has created and presented cyber warfare exercises to community first responders, and government agencies to prepare them for potential threats against state infrastructure.
Johnson is a core red team member for the National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (NCCDC). He is a principal penetration tester / manager for Rapid7 where he has worked for over 9 years. He creates and implements ways to perform penetration assessments for different types of assessments, wireless, network, application, mobile, social engineering, etc. He leads a team of penetration testers and handles larger and more complex assessments for the team.
Johnson holds multiple certifications including Certified Information Security Systems Professional (CISSP), and the NSA’s INFOSEC Assessment Methodology (IAM) and INFOSEC Evaluation Methodology (IEM) as well as Offensive Security Certified Professional (OSCP). He also holds two degrees from the University of Texas at San Antonio, including a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology, and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science.
Ax Sharma is a Security Researcher at Sonatype and engineer who holds a passion for perpetual learning. His works and expert analyses have frequently been featured by leading media outlets including Fortune, TechRepublic, CSO Online, BleepingComputer. Ax’s expertise lies in security vulnerability research, reverse engineering and software development. In his spare time, he loves exploiting vulnerabilities ethically and educating a wide range of audiences.
A proven executive and entrepreneur with over 20 years experience developing high-growth software companies, Matt Howard serves as Sonatype’s CMO and leads the company’s efforts to identify and execute partnerships within the DevSecOps ecosystem. Prior to Sonatype, Howard co-founded, developed and successfully sold two software companies. Earlier in his career Howard led sales and marketing at USinternetworking (acquired by AT&T) and Groove Networks (acquired by Microsoft) where his teams distributed workgroup collaboration products to enterprise customers. Howard holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from The George Washington University and a Master of Arts from George Mason University.
Shapor Naghibzadeh is the Co-Founder and Product Lead for Chronicle, Alphabet’s cybersecurity company that is now a part of Google Cloud. Prior to co-founding Chronicle, Naghibzadeh was a founding member of Google’s Threat Analysis Group, designed to counter targeted attacks against Google and its users. He designed and built systems to protect against nation-state attackers, including Google-scale malware and security telemetry analysis systems. Today, he focuses on bringing these technologies to market to extend the impact beyond protecting just Google. Naghibzadeh has a BS degree in Computer Engineering from the University of Illinois at Chicago.
UK Department for International Trade
Beth Vaccarezza has served the Department for International Trade (DIT) since March 2017. As the commercial arm for the UK Government, DIT is responsible for securing UK and global prosperity through international trade and investment promotion, and promoting free trade policies. Based in the British Embassy Washington (DC), Beth leads the 11-person U.S. defense, security and space team and oversees development and delivery of the defense, security and space trade and investment strategies in the U.S.
UK Department for International Trade
Dr. Henry J. Pearson was appointed as the UK Cyber Security Ambassador in the Department for International Trade (DIT) in April 2019. In this role he promotes UK cyber security expertise overseas, facilitates new relationships and strengthens existing ones with close friends and allies and works closely with UK businesses seeking to secure major international contracts with overseas governments, CNI providers and central banks that are looking to bolster their cyber defenses against potential cyber threats.
Between November 2014 and April 2016 Pearson was an HMG Cyber Adviser attached to the UK National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC). This role involved providing a range of support to the activities of the UK Cyber Security Ambassador, DIT Cyber Team and NCSC International Relations Team, including: speaking at major conferences in the UK and overseas; developing National and Defense Cyber Security Strategies for overseas governments; and reviewing current overseas cyber initiatives. The role also involved providing support and assurance on major bids and projects by UK industry.
Between June 2014 and April 2016 Pearson was also the National Technical Authority (originally GCHQ/CESG now NCSC) Ambassador for Academic Engagement, the first such appointment. This included liaising with UK Academic Centres of Excellence in Cyber Security Research, UK Research Institutes in Cyber Security and Centres for Doctoral Training and chairing the annual Joint UK Cyber Security Research Institutes conference.
Between 2001 and 2013 Pearson was a full-time embedded Independent Adviser to the UK Ministry of Defense (MOD), working closely with the Department’s Chief Information Officer to provide strategic and operational support on cyber security, cryptography and communications and information systems to Ministers and Senior Officials. He played a leading role in shaping the Department’s support to Defense Industry’s cyber security efforts. More broadly, he led the development of business cases for major IT and communications projects (multi-£Bn) and helped ensure their funding and approval.
From 1982 to 2007 Pearson worked in a range of senior positions with the consultancy, Detica (which later (2009) became BAE Systems Applied Intelligence). This included line management responsibility for the Defense-side of the company while retaining a strong involvement in the technical side of the work. He led teams developing a range of communications and information systems strategies for MOD, resulting in the formation of the Defense Communications Services Agency (now the Strategic Command’s Defense Digital).
Dave Merkel is the CEO and cofounder of Expel. He’s been involved in the information security field for nearly 20 years, first as a federal agent pursuing cyber criminals in the era of floppy disks and 2400 baud modems, then as chief technology officer (CTO) and vice president of products at Mandiant. Following FireEye’s acquisition of Mandiant, Merkel served as the global CTO of FireEye.
Before Merkel’s 10 years as a solutions provider he spent another decade as a security practitioner. He got his start as a special agent in the Air Force Office of Special Investigations, pursuing cyber criminals and conducting digital forensic investigations, and later as head of AOL’s technical security organization. While at AOL, he created and ran the first incident response capability for AOL and Time Warner, managed software security and policy programs, and built technologies for AOL’s security infrastructure.
He is frequently invited to comment on security-related headlines, and has been featured in news outlets like Bloomberg, The Washington Post and Forbes. He’s also been named to Washingtonian’s Tech Titans list several times.
King & Spalding
Tom Knox is a partner in King & Spalding’s Corporate, Finance and Investments practice. He advises clients on corporate, M&A, financing, technology transactions and outsourcing matters, serving as a strategic advisor to public, private and emerging companies in the software, technology, life sciences, transportation, manufacturing and government services sectors, and to investors in such companies.
He provides advice on a wide range of corporate and securities transactions, including domestic and international mergers and acquisitions, securities offerings, venture capital and private equity investments and divestitures, joint ventures and other corporate finance and governance matters.
He also structures and negotiates enterprise outsourcing, realignment and optimization transactions, including traditional and vested sourcing deals, strategic alliances, performance partnerships, preferred supplier arrangements and other complex transactions. He advises on the sourcing and procurement of facilities management, logistics and supply chain systems and other business processes.
Since 2008 Knox has been listed as a Band 1 Leading Individual by the independent international rating firm Chambers & Partners. Chambers USA described Mr. Knox as “very knowledgeable and very direct” and “somebody you go to for the most strategic advice” who is known as a “top-flight dealmaker” with “excellent responsiveness.” A Chambers reviewer described Mr. Knox as “one of the best deal negotiators that I’ve ever worked with. He is tenacious in representing our interests”. Another noted that “he anticipates issues, has ideas on how to take them on and executes very well. He has good ideas about risks, keeps things practical and gets things done.”
Knox is rated AV (Preeminent) by Martindale Hubbell, was named by the Washington Business Journal as Washington’s Top Corporate Finance Lawyer and is consistently named to the Virginia Super Lawyers, Washington DC Super Lawyers, Best Lawyers and Legal 500 US lists.
He is a frequent speaker on corporate, sourcing and technology transaction topics. He has served as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Georgetown University and as a guest lecturer at Johns Hopkins University, the University of Maryland, the University of Michigan Law School and Middlebury College. He has served as a member of the Board of Trustees of Middlebury College and is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Business Council for International Understanding.
Wayne Jackson is the CEO of Sonatype, a role he has held since 2010. Prior to Sonatype, Jackson served as the CEO of open source network security pioneer Sourcefire, Inc. (NASDAQ:FIRE), which he guided from fledgling start-up through an IPO in March of 2007, later acquired by Cisco for $2.7 billion. Before Sourcefire, Jackson co-founded Riverbed Technologies, a wireless infrastructure company, and served as its CEO until the sale of the company for more than $1 billion in March of 2000. Wayne holds a B.B.S in Finance from James Madison University, 1985, and has completed the Executive Education program for Corporate Governance at Harvard University.
New Zealand Embassy
Matt Harding is New Zealand’s senior Liaison Officer for Cyber and Communications Security to the U.S. and Canada. Harding began his career as a military lawyer in the New Zealand Army Legal Service. He was deployed on operational service to Bosnia as an Observer Company deputy commander, and to Afghanistan as the legal advisor to New Zealand’s special forces mentoring mission in Kabul. He was seconded to New Zealand’s Cryptologic Agency, the Government Communications Security Bureau, where he advised on the internal compliance review into unlawful targeting by the GCSB, the subsequent criminal investigation, and the litigation brought by Kim Dotcom, as well as the internal review and fallout from the Snowden disclosures. He was one of the lawyers who worked on updating New Zealand’s intelligence and security legislation, and the establishment of the GCSB’s national cyber security project CORTEX. Harding is currently posted to the New Zealand Embassy, Washington D.C., accompanied by his wife and two young children.
U.S. Department of Commerce
Dr. Allan Friedman is Director of Cybersecurity Initiatives at the National Telecommunications and Information Administration in the U.S. Department of Commerce. He coordinates NTIA’s multi-stakeholder processes on cybersecurity, focusing on addressing vulnerabilities in connected systems and across the software world. Prior to joining the Federal Government, Friedman spent over a decade as a noted cybersecurity and tech policy scholar at Harvard’s Computer Science Department, the Brookings Institution and George Washington University’s Engineering School. He is the co-author of the popular text ‘Cybersecurity and Cyberwar: What Everyone Needs to Know,’ has a degree in computer science from Swarthmore College and a Ph.D. in public policy from Harvard University.
United States Senate
Senator Warner was elected to the U.S. Senate in November 2008 and reelected to a second term in November 2014. He serves on the Senate Finance, Banking, Budget, and Rules Committees as well as the Select Committee on Intelligence, where he is the Vice Chairman. During his time in the Senate, Senator Warner has established himself as a bipartisan leader who has worked with Republicans and Democrats alike to cut red tape, increase government performance and accountability, and promote private sector innovation and job creation. Senator Warner has been recognized as a national leader in fighting for our military men and women and veterans, and in working to find bipartisan, balanced solutions to address our country’s debt and deficit.
From 2002 to 2006, he served as Governor of Virginia. When he left office in 2006, Virginia was ranked as the best state for business, the best managed state, and the best state in which to receive a public education.
The first in his family to graduate from college, Senator Warner spent 20 years as a successful technology and business leader in Virginia before entering public office. An early investor in the cellular telephone business, he co-founded the company that became Nextel and invested in hundreds of start-up technology companies that created tens of thousands of jobs.
NVTC Sr. Director of Programs & Events
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