OCTOBER 29, 2021 — David Mussington, executive assistant director for infrastructure security for the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), spent time at the UTSA National Security Collaboration Center (NSCC) Thursday to meet with UTSA leadership and researchers about their innovations in the cybersecurity field.
His visit was part of a four-day, four-city visit to explore the cyber landscape in the state of Texas while connecting with the talent and workforce in this space.
A political scientist by training, Mussington leads CISA’s effort to secure the nation’s critical infrastructure and reduce risks from man-made or natural causes in coordination with government and the private sector. Key areas of focus include vulnerability and risk assessments; securing soft targets and crowded places; training and exercises; and securing high-risk chemical facilities.
The morning began with welcoming remarks by UTSA Vice President for Research, Economic Development, and Knowledge Enterprise Bernard Arulanandam followed by introductions by (Ret.) Brigadier General Guy Walsh, executive director of the NSCC.
“It has been a pleasure to welcome Dr. Mussington and his CISA team to the NSCC, and to showcase the depth of our expertise in cyber defense,” said Walsh, who also helped coordinate Mussington’s visit with UTSA’s research partners in Austin and San Antonio. “There can be no higher compliment that hearing that David has seen excellence at UTSA and our commitment to solve problems.”
Federal partners that were in attendance included representatives from the Air Force Research Laboratory, Army Research Laboratory, Department of Energy National Laboratories, Idaho National Laboratory, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Sandia National Laboratories, the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI), NSA Texas, the U.S. Secret Service, and the 16th Air Force.
Howard Grimes, CEO of the Cybersecurity Manufacturing Innovation Institute, gave an update about the institute's work including its post-award plans for Trustworks.edu as a service to transform manufacturing on a global scale, and train more than a million cyber warriors.
This was augmented by demonstrations by UTSA research centers, institutes and labs including: Oren Upton of the IoT Lab; Glenn Dietrich of the Institute for Cyber Security’s SCADA Lab; and White of CIAS, as well as RPI Group—the newest industry NSCC member.
A working lunch followed with Joint Base San Antonio leadership on “Securing Commercial and Critical Infrastructure and Key Resources (CIKR) in San Antonio.” In the afternoon, they departed for the regional FBI headquarters for a roundtable discussion with federal, state, city officials, and the CIKR industry.
In addition to UTSA, Mussington visited with cyber experts over the past few days which included staff and researchers from the Texas Division of Emergency Management, Greater Houston Partnership, Texas A&M University’s RELLIS Campus, Secure America Institute, Capital Factory, UT Austin, and the Texas School Safety Center.
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