The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency is getting Kiersten Todt — a veteran of cyber-focused roles in the executive branch, on Capitol Hill and the private sector — as its chief of staff.
Todt has been heading up the Cyber Readiness Institute, a non-profit focused on developing cybersecurity tools for small businesses. She now returns to the public sector at CISA, housed within the Department of Homeland Security.
When she last worked for the federal government, it was as executive director of President Barack Obama’s Commission on Enhancing National Cybersecurity. Among the recommendations in its 2016 final report: creation of an agency just like CISA.
Now, at CISA, Todt will focus on long-range objectives, allocating resources and the CISA workforce.
“I look forward to shaping CISA’s long-term planning and working with industry, federal agencies, and state, local, tribal, and territorial government partners to chart the path forward for a more secure and resilient nation,” Todt said in a statement accompanying CISA’s announcement of her post Monday.
It’s a key hire for Jen Easterly, who has served as director of CISA since mid-July and who has been ramping up her own plans for the agency.
Todt has a range of other experience for the chief of staff job. She was CEO of Liberty Group Ventures, a risk management consulting firm, and a partner at Good Harbor Consulting.
On the Hill, she was a staffer for the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee from 2000-2002, during which time the committee developed the legislation that created DHS — and Todt played a role in writing the cybersecurity parts of that bill.