Education Level: Intermediate

1120 - Keynote Panel - Help Wanted! – Addressing the Cybersecurity Skills Shortage

Monday, September 25
12:00 PM - 1:15 PM

A 1.8 million worker shortage in cybersecurity gives the old adage “Good help is hard to find” a whole new meaning. With the dearth of qualified cybersecurity professionals and our networks under attack from all angles every day, the demand and competition for talent is fierce. One hiring manager remarked “real candidates are fought over like Thunderdome.” Join Gary Beach, author of The U.S. Technology Skills Gap as he moderates an accomplished panel including David Shearer, CEO of (ISC)2, Brandon Dunlap, Senior Manager, Security, Risk & Compliance, Amazon and Don Freese, Deputy Assistant Director, FBI as they discuss the state of job market, why there’s a skill shortage and how organizations can position themselves to find and attract the best candidates.

Learning Objectives:

Brandon Dunlap


Brandon Dunlap is a prolific speaker and professional with a background in consulting, security professional and manager.


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Donald W. Freese

Deputy Assistant Director

Don Freese currently serves in the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Information Technology Branch. In his capacity as Deputy Assistant Director, Donald is responsible for worldwide customer service, IT continuity, risk management and network operations. In addition, he oversees integration of engineering support and liaisons with all enterprise IT divisions, security operations and incident response.

He has served as a special agent with the FBI since 1996. Prior to his assignment with ITB, Donald served as the director of the National Cyber Investigative Joint Task Force (NCIJTF), one of the seven designated federal cyber centers. In this capacity, he was responsible for leading 24 partner agencies to accomplish the nation’s top-tier, domestic cyber mission through coordinating, integrating and sharing cyber threat data to enable intelligence and investigative operations worldwide. In previous assignments, he directed operational teams conducting criminal and national security investigations, including international and domestic portfolio management, with increasing leadership responsibility in cross-functional areas of both disciplines. Preceding his appointment as director of NCIJTF, he served as an FBI assistant special agent responsible for all cyber, counterterrorism and counterintelligence operations in north Texas. Donald has deep experience leading division level business operations, designing and executing complex financial crime investigations and establishing critical incident response teams at the field office level.

He is a former captain in the U.S. Army. He earned his B.A. in criminal justice from California State University-Fullerton and a M.S. in business continuity, security and risk management from Boston University. He currently maintains professional certifications in tactical command and cybersecurity strategy.


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Gary Beach

Author: The U.S. Technology Skills Gap

Gary Beach brings more than 30 years of information technology publishing experience to his role as publisher emeritus of IDG’s CIO magazine. Beach is a highly regarded spokesperson throughout the United States and the global technology industry and he has testified on key issues facing the IT industry before the U.S. House and Senate. From the Oval Office of the White House in 1995, Beach launched an IT non-profit organization called Tech Corps that continues to challenge IT professionals to assist the education tech issues of K-12 schools in America. As an expert on the role of the CIO, IT best practices and future IT predictions, he is frequently quoted by major media organizations such as CNN, USA Today, The New York Times, The San Francisco Chronicle and Business Week. Beach has been a regular contributor on CNBC’s Squawk Box, Squawk on the Street and Closing Bell for more than 10 years. From 1998 – 2002 he contributed commentaries on key tech issues to NPR’s “All Things Considered” program. Beach is a frequent guest speaker at many industry conferences as well as user events for firms such as Microsoft, IBM, Dell, EMC and CA. In 2008, Beach developed and moderated CIO magazine’s “How to Sell the CIO” sales development program.

Prior to joining CIO magazine in 1997, Beach was publisher and president of two IDG publications, Computerworld and Network World. He joined IDG in 1987 after a 10 year career in managerial posts at McGraw-Hill, Inc.

He is currently writing a book entitled “The Educational Disarmament of America: Why Middle School Math and Science Teachers Hold the Key to America’s Future.”


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David Shearer

Chief Executive Officer

Mr. Shearer has more than 30 years of business experience including the chief operating officer for (ISC)², associate chief information officer for International Technology Services at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the deputy chief information officer at the U.S. Department of the Interior, and the executive for architecture, engineering and technical services at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. Mr. Shearer has been responsible for managing and providing services via international IT infrastructures, and he has implemented large-scale SAP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) projects. Mr. Shearer has led large geographically separated staffs that support global solutions. Mr. Shearer holds a B.S. from Park College, a M.S. from Syracuse University, management and technical certificates from the U.S. National Defense University, and he is a U.S. federal executive presidential rank award recipient. As (ISC)² Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Shearer is responsible for the overall direction and management of the organization and its Center for Cyber Safety and Education.


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Deidre Diamond

Founder and CEO
CyberSN ( and #brainbabe (

Deidre Diamond is the CEO and Founder of, a cyber security research and staffing company, and the Founder of, a cyber security not-for-profit organization. Deidre’s vision and leadership has resulted in a dramatic decrease in the frustration, time and cost associated with job searching and hiring for cyber security professionals. Prior to CyberSN, Deidre was the CEO of Percussion Software, the first VP of Sales at Rapid7 (NYSE:RPD) and the VP of Staffing and Recruiting for the national technical staffing company Motion Recruitment. Deidre leads with a strong commitment to transparency, equality, training, support, high-productivity and love in the work force.


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1120 - Keynote Panel - Help Wanted! – Addressing the Cybersecurity Skills Shortage

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