Hampton University
Hampton University Professor Participates in Virtual Event with US Department of Homeland Security Secretary
04/16/2021 - #150

HAMPTON, Va. (April 16, 2021) – On Wednesday, March 31, Hampton University computer science professor, Dr. Chutima Boonthum-Denecke participated in the US Department of Homeland Security’s virtual event, “Confronting Realities: A vision for Cybersecurity Resilience.” The purpose of this special event with Homeland Security Secretary, Alejandro N. Mayorkas, was to provide the Secretary the opportunity to outline his vision and roadmap for the Department’s cybersecurity efforts.

“It is wonderful to see Hampton University faculty like Dr. Chutima Boonthum-Denecke actively engaging in important conversations regarding the future of our nation's cybersecurity with the Secretary of Homeland Security,” said Hampton University President, Dr. William R. Harvey. “The future of our nation's cybersecurity begins at Hampton University, where we continue to train individuals who will go on to enhance the nation's capacity to defend against domestic and foreign cyberattacks, and work with the federal government to safeguard our vital networks.”

Boonthum-Denecke introduced the Secretary, and they were later joined by Girl Scouts’ Interim CEO, Judith Batty for a fireside chat. During the virtual event, many topics were discussed such as: 

  • US Cybersecurity challenges
  • Biden-Harris Administration
  • Vision and Roadmap from the US Department of Homeland Security
  • Mobilizing Action to improve cyber resilience 

“First, the government does not have the capacity to achieve our nation’s cyber resilience alone. So much of our critical infrastructure is in the private sector’s hands. We need to work with the private sector to protect the interests of the American people and the services on which we rely. We need organizations like the Girl Scouts and Hampton University to inspire and mobilize the next generation of diverse talent to help us tackle what remains a monumental challenge,” said Secretary Mayorkas. 

Secretary Mayorkas outlined five foundational principles for his vision for cybersecurity resilience:

  1. Acknowledging the broader geopolitical context and democratic backsliding that is happening around the world
  2. Bold and immediate innovations, wide-scale investments, and raising the bar of essential cyber hygiene are urgently needed to improve our cyber defenses.  
  3. Determining what risks to prioritize and how to allocate limited resources is crucial to maximizing the government’s impact. 
  4. Strengthen collaboration between the private sector and government to generate the insights necessary to detect malicious cyber actors. 
  5. Integrate diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Boonthum-Denecke joined the Hampton University Department of Computer Science, in Fall 2006 as an Assistant Professor. She earned her Ph. D. in computer science from Old Dominion University in 2007; MS in Applied Computer Science from Illinois State University in 2000; and BS in Computer Science from Srinakharinwirot University in 1997. 

"It was a great honor to be a part of this cyber event and introduce the US Secretary of Homeland Security, Alejandro Mayorkas, and the Girl Scouts of the USA's Interim CEO, Judith Batty. Secretary Mayorkas' vision and roadmap on cybersecurity effort will guide us to overcome cybersecurity challenges and improve our cyber resilience. And I look forward to our future collaboration,” said Boonthum-Denecke

“When asked who would represent the Department of Computer Science at the Cybersecurity Resilience Event, I immediately suggested Dr. Boonthum-Denecke,” said Dr. Jean Muhammad, Chair of Hampton University’s Department of Computer Science. “She has dedicated herself to ensuring that the Department has maintained the highest of standards in the field of Cyber Security Education as the Chief Security Officer for the department. Dr. Boonthum-Denecke is also the National Science Foundation Primary Investigator for the Scholarship for Service in Cyber Security. She has diligently carried forward the Department of Computer Science's distinction as the Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education.  Dr. Boonthum-Denecke represented Hampton University and the Department of Computer Science excellently and made us all proud.”


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