The Cyber Readiness Institute named cybersecurity policy leader Karen S. Evans Managing Director. For over 20 years, Evans has been at the forefront of cybersecurity policy with Congressional- and Presidential-appointed positions at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).
CRI was launched in July 2017 by senior leaders in government, industry, and cybersecurity serving on the President’s Commission on Enhancing National Cybersecurity. The bipartisan Commission was tasked with developing recommendations for securing the digital economy and providing a roadmap for the incoming Administration.
CRI was established to follow up on the recommendations of the Commission Report, with a specific mandate to deliver prescriptive, accessible, and free tools to improve the resilience and cyber readiness of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). CRI’s Board of Advisors includes Apple, ExxonMobil, General Motors, Mastercard, Microsoft, Principal, and The Center for Global Enterprise (CGE).
Evans takes over an organization that has grown to reach more than two million small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) around the world. Downloads of the Institute’s free tools and guides have exceeded 140,000 and through a series of global webinars, CRI has reached over 90,000 individuals and SMEs in the past two years.
“CRI is providing actionable solutions for SMEs to address their cyber readiness. I am excited for this opportunity as the Managing Director to continue to address the needs of the SMEs and help them mitigate their risk with an ever-changing cyber security landscape,” said Evans.
Throughout her career, Evans has focused on establishing and driving partnerships with diverse stakeholders to deliver essential private/public solutions to secure global supply chains. She has served as an independent director and outside manager for publicly traded companies and not-for-profit organizations. Evans established the U.S. Cyber Challenge, a private non-profit that partnered with universities to train several hundred cyber experts across the United States.
Evans has been the Chief Information Officer for both DOE and DHS, the assistant secretary for cybersecurity, energy security and emergency response at DOE, and the Administrator for the Office of Electronic Government and Information Technology at the OMB.
“Karen has a deep understanding of the cybersecurity issues SMEs face in today’s fast-paced, tumultuous business environment. We are excited to have her join CRI as our new Managing Director,” said Sam Palmisano, Co-Chair of CRI and Chairman of The Center for Global Enterprise. “Karen’s extensive credentials and experience addressing cybersecurity issues from within government and the private sector distinguished her as the best person to help lead CRI to new heights.”
CRI’s flagship Cyber Readiness Program, launched in 2018, is designed to be clear and accessible for SMEs regardless of size, technical expertise, and sector. Designed in collaboration with cyber experts from leading organizations, the Program focuses on human behavior, embedding basic cyber policies and processes into an organization. In May, CRI added the Cyber Leader Certification Program, the first professional credential program designed to train cyber leaders.