100 Former U.S. Military – Veteran CISOs


2021 – FINDING SECURITY FROM LEADERS WHO SERVED IN THE U.S. MILITARY

Firms are finding greater security by hiring experienced Veterans as their CISOs

Scroll to review the full list of 100 Industry Leading U.S. Military – Veteran Chief Information Security Officers

In 2020, organizations responded to a significant increase in the frequency of nation-state cyber attacks. As an example, large biopharma firms, working on COVID-19 vaccines, responded to nation-state backed cyber attacks almost every minute of the day. Today, the need for and demands on highly disciplined CISOs have increased. Firms are challenged to identify security experts who have the right blend of strategic and tactical leadership experience across information and physical security. Firms require CISOs that are more technically adept, able to consistently learn, and inspire others to build a security-minded organizational culture.


More organizations are relying on security executives that have prior military experience. Veterans in cybersecurity hold the highest levels trust and security clearance. They carry a deep sense of responsibility to serve and protect others and the discipline required to successfully lead security organizations in today's volatile environment.

Veteran CISOs are able to partner well internationally with trusted external entities across public/private partnerships, corporate alliances, industry consortiums, government agencies, and law enforcement networks. As an example, many Veteran CISOs benefit from being members of The Cyber Security Forum Initiative (CSFI), "a non-profit organization with a mission to provide Cyber Warfare awareness, guidance, and security solutions through collaboration, education, volunteer work, and training to assist the US Government, US Military, Commercial Interests, and International Partners." Today, organizations require systems that can anticipate and automatically respond to emerging international threats. Veterans are experienced in building multicultural and multilingual teams. Machine learning and natural language processing are becoming more important in threat identification and assessment, requiring CISOs who are capable of hiring and inspiring multilingual security engineers.

As more Veterans with diverse backgrounds secure and succeed in the CISO role, they inspire a new generation of active U.S. military personnel to pursue careers in corporate security. The list below was created with the goal of spotlighting U.S. Veteran Chief Information Security Officers across industry and the spotlight organizations supporting diversity, equity, and inclusion. Please let us know if there is an executive that you feel should be added to this list. To the former U.S. Military – Veteran CISOs on this list, Veterans not on this list, active Military members, Military family members, and especially those who made the ultimate sacrifice defending our great nation, thank you.


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Inspiring Others to Serve, Protect & Persevere

Marene Allison

Chief Information Security Officer, Johnson & Johnson

“I’ve never let stereotypes define me. 

I take the high road and have always persevered.”

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