The 2011 Executive Women's Forum "Women of Influence" Awards were celebrated recently at the annual EWF event in Scottsdale, Arizona.
The awards were co-presented by Alta Associates and CSO Magazine, recognizing women in four categories: one winner from the public sector, a private solutions provider from the security industry, a corporate practitioner from the private sector, and finally, "One to Watch," a future leader in the security field. The winners were nominated by peers in the security community.
See the list of the 2010 Women of Influence award winners
CSO asked each winner this year for some perspective about the challenges women face working in the security industry, and what advice they would give to others pursuing security-related careers.
Here is a list of the winners, and their thoughts and advice for career success.
This year, the winner in the private solutions category is Pamela Warren, Cybercrime Strategist and of Global Public Sector and CIP Initiatives with McAfee. Warren has worked in the security industry in both the U.S. intelligence community and the private sector for over a decade and is recognized as one of McAfee's experts on critical infrastructure and public sector issues.
As McAfee's Cybercrime Strategist, Ms. Warren engages government agencies and leaders, industry CIOs, Chief Privacy Officers and the law enforcement community to help facilitate the exchange of innovative ideas on the global issue of cybercrime. She regularly engages McAfee customers and ICS vendor partners for solutions involving critical infrastructure issues and cybercrime. Ms. Warren speaks at numerous industry events, has testified to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, served on the DSL Forum security working group, ANSI X9, and on the U.S. National Security Telecommunications Advisory Council to address cyber security and critical infrastructure issues, and is regularly quoted by the media regarding McAfee activities. Most recently, she led the development of McAfee's CyberSafety Resources Portal and K-12 cybersafety outreach program for greater consumer awareness, and represents McAfee on the Board of the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA).
What is the biggest challenge for women in security professions today?
Unfortunately, women are still in the minority in the industry and, with some exceptions, are not often recognized for their contributions or as "one of the team" of male experts. You do not have to let that hinder your growth as you prove your value to your team, your company, your profession.
What advice would you give to those in considering security as a profession, or who are in security but want to take their career to the next level?
Security is a fascinating and ever-evolving field to pursue. Spend the time finding the right role and the right company to find ones you feel instinctively meet your particular interests. Once you do so, I believe that you will find it extremely fulfilling and full of intellectual challenge, as well as growth potential.
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