The inaugural DMV Rising cyber security conference brought together more than 100 professionals from the DMV region who are innovating at the forefront of global cyber security and risk management.
My colleagues at Virtru and I had the honor of serving as lead organizers alongside of our founding partners Sonatype, Dragos, Palo Alto Networks, GDIT, Flashpoint, Data Tribe and more. The conference itself was intended to foster conversations with industry leaders, connect leading practitioners with peers, and celebrate the DMV as a hub of innovation in the global cyber industry.
DMV Rising started with an observation and an idea in June.
My observation was this: despite $600M in cyber investments in H1 2023 alone, the DMV regional economy isn't getting the credit that it deserves as a leader in global cyber innovation.
The idea for a community conference was inspired by powerful lessons learned from the past. Specifically, lessons taught to me by my good friends and former colleagues Derek Weeks and Mark Miller, and my experiences in helping them develop All Day DevOps into the world's largest virtual conference fostering authentic connections among engineers committed to building higher quality software faster and more securely than ever before.
Reflecting on the present, it remained obvious that the world had been changed forever by Covid19 and the associated "work from home" revolution. Professionals in every industry are now settling into a new normal based on hybrid work. In this environment, I wondered if the cyber security community in the DMV region would have the appetite to join forces and organize and host an in-person conference? After socializing the idea with a few colleagues and peer companies in the local community – the answer quickly became clear. The DMV community was hungry to get together and do something special.
For the conference itself, we had three simple motivations:
In support of these motivations, we hosted three lively panel discussions:
For a detailed summary of the conversations, check out Mike Laramie's excellent blog post. Mike is Security CTO at Sada Systems and I really love the way he uses a workflow diagram to encapsulate the simple, yet powerful definition of Zero Trust offered by panelist Dr. John Sahlin, VP of Cyber Solutions at GDIT.
DMV Rising wasn’t just about panels and discussions. Attendees had the opportunity to network and celebrate together at a fantastic rooftop reception, blessed with perfect weather. Additionally, at 6pm, the event featured a special guest, Revi Sterling, Senior Director at CARE USA, who shed light on the vital intersection of humanity, digital privacy, and cyber security.
The DMV Rising cyber security conference was a resounding success, serving as a testament to the vibrancy and innovation within the DMV’s cyber community. With the global software and cyber markets continuously growing, and with substantial investments pouring into DMV cyber initiatives, this event highlighted the region’s pivotal role in shaping the future of cyber security. It’s safe to say that DMV Rising will remain a significant event on the cyber security calendar for years to come, fostering collaboration, learning, and the celebration of cyber innovation.
See you again next year!
A proven executive and entrepreneur with over 25 years experience developing high-growth software companies, Matt serves as Virtu’s CMO and leads all aspects of the company’s go-to-market motion within the data protection and Zero Trust security ecosystems.View more posts by Matt Howard
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