Monday, October 24, 2011

Welcoming Weatherford to his new DHS Cyber Security Post

I've got a note here this morning from National Bureau of Information Security Examiners (NBISE) founder and former NERC CSO Michael Assante. Perhaps there's no one who understands the challenges Weatherford faced at FERC more than Mike. As a frequent advisor to FERC and Congress on critical national infrastructure security issues, few are better placed to know the obstacles and opportunities that await the new DHS Cybersecurity leader:
I would like to extend my congratulations to Mark Weatherford on his appointment as the new Deputy Under Secretary for Cybersecurity for the National Protection and Programs Directorate (NPPD) and am very pleased to see such a capable and experienced leader take the helm. 
Mark has always carried a deep sense of mission into his assignments and in doing so has been able to motivate people, build teams, and mobilize entire communities. His background makes him an ideal choice for the Deputy Under Secretary position as he has experience working across large government enterprises and his most recent post, as the NERC CSO, has prepared him to appreciate the unique challenges involved with cybersecurity and industrial control systems.
At NERC, Mark helped broaden our thinking about cybersecurity and our digitally reliant infrastructures. His vision has pushed organizations to look beyond compliance to develop a comprehensive approach by including system engineering, planning, operations, risk management and security into efforts to secure our infrastructures. Mark’s leadership will help ensure national efforts align with front line reality as our nation continues to modernize our grid to increase productivity and efficiency.
We should look for opportunities to support Mark and the department in the months ahead to achieve greater cyber-resilience in our nation’s critical infrastructure.
Hear hear. Mark Weatherford has now seen how the cyber security policy sausage is made at the state level twice and Federal level once, in a large company, and in the DoD for the US Navy at the beginning of his career.

Sausage making is never pretty. But if you know how it's done, how it can go wrong and what ingredients are required to produce the best stuff, you can do a lot of good. Let's wish him well, and, seconding Mike's call to assist, pitch in wherever and whenever we can. Even with a strong leader, this type of sausage making is, after all, a team sport.

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