Governance, Risk and Compliance Conference Speakers

Michael A. Echols is the CEO of International Association of Certified ISAOs (IACI), located at Kennedy Space Center, building cyber threat organizations globally. He works with senior corporate leaders and government officials through IACI and his business, MAX Cybersecurity LLC, to make the U.S. more resilient. Mr. Echols is leading a revolution to stand-up and support Information Sharing and Analysis Organizations (ISAO). As such, Mr. Echols leads a global effort to harmonize cyber risk reduction techniques and information sharing. He recently launched a Credit Union ISAO (NCU-ISAO), National Election System ISAO (NES_ISAO), and Maritime and Port ISAO, (MPS-ISAO) and Global Human Trafficking ISAO (GHT-ISAO). Previously, Mr. Echols managed national security communication, cyber threat and resiliency programs for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). He was the appointee for the rollout of President Obama’s EO 13691 empowering the private sector to better protect themselves. Mr. Echols was instrumental in the development a national program related the NIST Cybersecurity Framework, the National Cyber Incident Response Plan and the National Response Framework. At DHS, Mr. Echols chaired activities optimizing national programs, cybersecurity strategy, interagency coordination, public safety and counterterrorism across federal agencies and the private sector. Mr. Echols’ was the chair of the Communications Sector, the Network Security Information Exchange and led the President’s NSTAC, an advisory committee of Comms, IT, and Defense CEOs providing policy recommendations to the President. Mr. Echols is the former Chief of the Government-Industry Planning and Management Branch, National Communications System (NCS) from 2009 – 2012. He managed the stand-up of the Joint Program Office under Executive Order 13618 – supporting for national security and emergency preparedness (NS/EP) communications. He also served as the NATO CCPC representative. Mr. Echols is a graduate of the NPLI – Harvard Kennedy School of Public Health and the Federal Executive Institute. He holds a Masters Business Administration, a Masters in Biotechnology, a Graduate Certificate in Technology Management, and a BS in Criminal Justice; all from the University of Maryland. Mr. Echols is a STEM advocate through his Training Resilient Youth program.
Michael Watson is the Chief Information Security Officer for the Commonwealth of Virginia at the Virginia Information Technologies Agency (VITA). With over 15 years of experience working in the information security field, he leads the Commonwealth Security and Risk Management team which provides security governance, oversight, and risk management for the executive, judicial, and legislative branches of government in Virginia. Michael holds a graduate degree in telecommunications with a focus on security and management from the University of Pennsylvania and earned his undergraduate degree from James Madison University. He is a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP), incident handler, intrusion analyst, penetration tester, and information systems auditor.
Larry Whiteside Jr., Co-Founder & Executive VP, International Consortium of Minority Cybersecurity Professionals (ICMCP). Larry is a seasoned cybersecurity executive. He has over 20 years experience in building and running cybersecurity programs in multiple industries to include DoD, Federal Government, Financial Services, Healthcare, and Critical Infrastructure. Larry is also the co-founder and vice president of the International Consortium of Minority Cybersecurity Professionals (ICMCP), a not-for-profit that is attempting to increase the number of minority and female cybersecurity professionals through many different avenues to include scholarship, internship, and training opportunities. Larry has worked at Optiv as VP, Healthcare and Critical Infrastructure; at LCRA as CSO; at Comodo as Corporate Strategy Advisor to the CEO; at Lynx Technology Partners as CSO; and at Spectrum Health as both the CISO and the Director of Enterprise Operations. He has also worked at Visiting Nurse Service of NY as the CISO; at Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. as Deputy CISO, VP of Global Information Security; at Computer Horizons Corp. as a Practice Lead / Managing Sr. Security Consultant. Larry has held other positions including Director of Competitive Analysis and Technical Documentation at netForensics; Director of IT Security through BAE Systems at the Naval Strategic Systems Programs in Washington, D.C.; and Manager and Senior Security Analyst at TruSecure Corporation. Mr. Whiteside started his career with the United States Air Force as an Officer and separated 2002. He held positions such as Chief, Information Warfare/Network Security Divisions at the Pentagon. He was also Chief, Network Security Division – Single Agency Manager at the Pentagon. He has also been an Information Systems Flight Commander and Chief, Network Control Center at Pope Air Force Base in North Carolina. In recognition for his achievements, Mr. Whiteside was nominated for the National Information Security Executive of the Year (2009, 2010). In the Air Force, Mr. Whiteside has been honored as the Company Grade Officer of the Year for his units in 1997 and 2000. Larry received his BS in Computer Science at Huston-Tillotson University in 1994, and is an active member of various organizations, including Information System Security Association, Cloud Security Alliance, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Boys and Girls Club, YMCA, and multiple industry based Security Committees committed to strengthening security in the public sector. He has briefed some of the highest levels of DoD, given lectures at various conferences to include the Gartner Security Summit, RSA, SC World Congress, Gartner Identity and Access Management Summit, and has been featured in many articles relating to Information Security and Risk Management.
Eric Sweden possesses 30 years of experience in senior technical and management positions within IT and business with substantial experience in business architecture, information architecture, business process enhancement, and strategy development. He has experience in implementing over-arching enterprise information management strategies in large corporations. In addition, his experience includes the development of strategic business intent, capability management, and program leadership in banking, health care, manufacturing, public utilities, telecommunications, and government. In his current role, Eric provides consulting to state and territorial government, authors a variety of reports related to enterprise architecture and the state CIO, leads the Enterprise Architecture & Governance Program for the National Association of State Chief Information Officers (NASCIO), represents NASCIO with various partners in industry and government including OMB, the White House, EPA, GAO, DHS and DOJ. NASCIO’s reports are widely referenced globally by industry, academia and government. Eric is an experienced presenter, and author on the subjects of enterprise architecture, IT governance, data management, project management, as well as industrial and public health. He has written a long list of guidance documents related to industry and state government IT management including enterprise architecture, enterprise IT governance, records management, digital preservation, information sharing, organizational transformation, business intelligence and analytics, cloud computing, cyber disruption response planning, and government transparency. Eric holds an MBA from the Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, Minnesota –, with concentrations in marketing and MIS administration; and a Master of Science from the School of Public Health, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan –, with a concentration in industrial health. In 2016 Eric completed the PTI / Rutgers University Certified Government Chief Information Officer (CGCIO™) Program with Honors.
Mr. Tom Conkle is a Cybersecurity Engineer with over 17 years of cybersecurity experience. Tom is the G2 Lead for commercial services focusing on assisting companies within the critical infrastructure sector in using the Cybersecurity Framework to improve their cybersecurity programs. Tom is the co-author of ISACA’s guide for Implementing the NIST Cybersecurity Framework. This book provides organization specific guidance for using the Cybersecurity Framework. Tom’s background also includes supporting security control and vulnerability assessments, information system security engineering activities, and performing security risk assessments. Tom is a Cybersecurity Framework subject matter expert and continues to support NIST in the evolution of the Framework.
Agnes Kirk is the State of Washington Chief Information Security Officer, appointed by the State CIO. She is responsible for establishing and leading the strategic direction of cybersecurity for Washington State and directs the State’s Office of Cyber Security. She provides policy and technology leadership for state government, and promotes cooperation and coordination between regional and national government and private sector organizations. She advises the Governor and Legislators on key cyber issues, leads the state’s participation in national cyber security efforts and is a nationally recognized speaker on cyber security. She organized and hosted Governor Inslee’s first Cybersecurity and Privacy Summit that brought together over 225 leaders across business and government. Agnes was recently named one of the Country’s Top Women in Technology; a 2016 Innovations that Matter Award recipient; selected by Government Technology Magazine as one of the nation’s Top 25 Doers, Dreamers and Drivers. She was named to the Homeland Security Advisory Council (HSAC) Subcommittee on Cyber Security and recently selected as a member of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) State, Local, Tribal, and Private Sector Policy Advisory Committee. Agnes is a member of the Governor’s Domestic Security Executive Group, chairs the State of Washington Cyber Incident Response Center, is a member of the National Association of Chief Information Officers CISO Advisory Board, founding member of Washington’s Cyber Unified Coordination Group, co-founded the Pacific Northwest Alliance for Cyber Security, served on the Executive Committee of the Multi-State ISAC, and helped establish a regional chapter of the Information System Security Association International. Agnes spends a significant amount of time mentoring upcoming cyber security professionals