StateScoop highlights 2018 State Cybersecurity Leader winners

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The State Cybersecurity Leader award recognizes the state leaders who demonstrate a passion and focus on keeping systems secure and thinking about security in the big picture of state IT.


Alfritch Anderson

Alfritch Anderson

Senior Manager, Security Operations
Colorado Governor’s Office of Information Technology

Staying ahead of cybersecurity threats and finding qualified personnel to help protect state resources can be challenging. To help alleviate the problem, Alfritch led an effort to develop a Veterans Transition Program. Through this program, veterans who are transitioning out of the military can apply for a paid internship at the Governor’s Office of Information Technology where they can use their skills to help protect the state network while also gaining experience with the tools used in the public and private sectors. This is a win-win. It provides the veterans with the skills they need to compete for jobs while providing a potential pipeline of new talent for the state.


Erik Avakian

Erik Avakian

Chief Information Security Officer
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania

Avakian’s veteran leadership is a huge asset to the security posture of state government in Pennsylvania. As the chief information security officer for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania’s Office of Administration, Information Technology division, since taking the interim role with the state in 2007, Avakian brings more than 17 years experience securing enterprise-level environments, reducing risk for the organization and mapping security to the business. Erik is responsible for establishing enterprise security strategy, standards, controls, and security policies as the state defends against cyberattacks and minimizes the damage and recovery time from attacks if and when they occur.


Dustin Glover

Dustin Glover

Chief Information Security Officer
State of Louisiana

Dustin Glover is the chief information security officer for the state of Louisiana a role he has been in since November 2014. In his role, Glover establishes and maintains the statewide vision, strategy and programs to ensure information assets and technologies are adequately protected. He also provides direction to agencies and partners to reduce risk across the enterprise. During his time as CISO, Glover worked alongside his team to help centralize and optimize the state’s security operation.


Chris Hill

Chris Hill

Chief Information Security Officer
State of Illinois

In July of 2017, an Illinois state agency reported a malware outbreak which was spreading across the network. Staff took swift action to minimize the further spread of the malware by shutting off connectivity to the Internet, and subsequently shutting off their entire technology network. The Illinois cybersecurity team, led by Chris Hill, initiated an incident response in partnership with the agency. Chris leadership throughout this critical and fast-paced event resulted in an emergency accelerated transformation that was essential in leading the team through this incident, thus taking a negative event and turning it into a positive outcome.


Mike Lettman

Mike Lettman

Chief Information Security Officer
State of Arizona

Having served as chief information security officer for the State of Arizona for going on six years, Lettman brings a wealth of experience and leadership to state government. Prior to joining the state, Lettman served as CISO for the State of Wisconsin for eight years and served as a chief technology officer and CISO for the Wisconsin Department of Justice for 17 years. As CISO, Lettman leads the Arizona Office of Information Security in a highly decentralized organization that operates a vast IT infrastructure to support, control, and connect the critical digital infrastructure of state government.


Maria Thompson

Maria Thompson

Chief Information Risk Officer
State of North Carolina

Since joining the NC Department of Information Technology in 2015 as its first Chief Risk Officer, Maria Thompson has developed an integrated statewide framework to manage information risk, including operations, security and data protection. Thompson tirelessly promotes cybersecurity, establishing a state-supported cybersecurity apprenticeship for disabled veterans and promoting cyber awareness and careers to students from elementary schools to universities. She sits on multiple state-level and federal cybersecurity boards, and is also a commissioner on the State Emergency Response Commission. She retired as Cyber Security Chief for the Marine Corps after 20 years of service.


Walter Tong

Walter Tong

Director, Cyber Intelligence
Georgia Technology Authority

As Georgias Cyber Intelligence Director, Walter Tong, CISSP, works with state agencies on security program development, evaluations, and risk management. He developed and implemented a cyber intelligence program to provide actionable intelligence to key state decision makers. He led development of enterprise guidelines for handling sensitive information and hiring standards for information security officers. Mr. Tong served as Georgias lead planner for DHSs Security Cyber Storm V exercise. He is an advisor to the Georgia Cyber Center for Innovation and Training, a $100 million facility opening in July 2018. He served 24 years in the U.S. military in information security.

Return to the 2018StateScoop 50 Awards announcement pagehere.

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