- Job title of nominated professional: Executive Vice President of Rapid Prototyping
- Company (where nominated professional or team is working): Circadence
- Website: http://www.circadence.com
- Company size (employees): 100 to 499
- Country: United States
- Headquarters Region: North America
In 3 bullets, summarize why this professional or team deserves recognition:
Laura’s ability to synthesize cutting-edge academic research from all sectors of the cybersecurity community is indicative of the kind of innovation and critical thinking required of today’s cyber professional to propel the industry forward.
Laura is seen by her colleagues as a true innovator because she is able to take seemingly disparate cross-disciplinary experience, research and applications and mold them into unique products and services that support the evolution of the cybersecurity industry.
Laura’s dedication to developing the next generation of cyber professionals in new and unique ways reduces barriers to and the intimidation factor of the world of cybersecurity, and encourages diverse populations of students to engage in an industry that is growing, well paying, and desperate for their talents.
In less than 300 words, summarize the achievements of the professional or team in the nominated category
As an engineer with decades of experience, Laura’s career began in Johns Hopkins University’s Applied Physics Lab where she developed the first-ever Cyber Protection Team Crew Operations Manual for the U.S. Military and National Guard Teams. This document established some of the first government-specific cybersecurity standards, and evolved the landscape for cyber training exercises to emphasize tactics, strategy, and scenario-based modeling and simulation environments. In support of U.S. CYBERCOMMAND, Laura assessed cyber teams in exercises and developed team defense strategies for effective roles and techniques against Advanced Persistent Threats. The government sector continues to deploy these engagements in support of U.S. Cyber Mission Force development, and Laura’s efforts inspired today’s table top exercises for public/private organizations.
At Circadence, Laura leads multi-disciplined teams in the development of new cybersecurity learning solutions. This has included the development of an in-game advisor powered by Artificial Intelligence, and the creation of Cloud-based, high fidelity cyber ranges designed to simulate digital networks in an “Ender’s Game”-like experience. Laura’s vision and leadership propelled a new type of cyber learning that was not previously in the marketplace: a gamified, fully immersive learning, learning and assessment experience available to professionals 24/7.
Today, Circadence’s Project Ares platform is used by government, enterprise and academic institutions globally. It is the first to gamify cybersecurity learning.
Laura is an advocate for empowering cyber professionals both seasoned and novice. She teaches an Applied Cyber Defense course at the University of Colorado Boulder, is involved in numerous youth programs (CyberPatriot, Girls Who Code, SoCal Cyber Cup), and a frequent subject matter expert source for industry media outlets and blogs.
Her ability to impart knowledge to the cybersecurity community and apply her expertise to support businesses in solving the toughest cybersecurity challenges is truly inspiring and one of the reasons she deserves this recognition.