Nuggets of Powerful Information from Women in Security Panel Discussion

For the first time, I was able to attend a women-in-the-industry-type of event at ASIS this year, a panel discussion with members of Women in Security and (ISC)2, a first combo session of this type for ASIS. An experience full of firsts, I figured there would no bra burnings in protest, but, I honestly didn't know what to expect. I felt like I was in for a treat, though.

The panel consisted of:

  • Richard Nealon, (ISC)2 Board Member; 
  • Diana-Lynn Contesti, (ISC)2 Board Member;
  • Dave Tyson, CPP, Senior Director, Global Information Security, Business Process, and Technology, SC Johnson & Son, Inc. and 2015 President, ASIS International; 
  • Shirley Pierini, CPP, PCI, Director Consulting, SMGI; and 2004 President, ASIS International;
  • Angela Tobon, Assistant Special Agent in Charge, National Security Branch of the Atlanta Division, FBI; and
  • Marene Allison, VP and Chief Information Security Officer, Johnson & Johnson.

Gail Essen, CPP, PSP, Enterprise Security, Siemens, moderated the interactive discussion.

The following are nuggets of powerful information that I learned from the dynamic industry leaders regarding the security industry:

  • 97% - The percentage of the security industry who is male.
  • 3% - The percentage of the security industry who is female. Females make up 51% of the population. 
  • Women in Security is about bringing women together to discuss their strengths and help them with their weaknesses.
  • A leader needs a blend and balance of certain skills to progress in his/her career. 
  • It's beneficial to have every individual in an organization set goals and strive to exceed them that are specific to their function in the organization. 
  • Don't be afraid to take opportunities that present themselves. 
  • Keeping looking for opportunities. 
  • Don't be put down by what people think you are or think they know about you.

As I listened to the panelists speak their words of wisdom, I felt extremely connected to the industry that I represent: security. At the end of the day, male or female, it really doesn't matter. What matters is keeping people and assets safe and secure in a world filled with chaotic destruction.

About the Author

Ginger Hill is Group Social Media Manager.

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