Hacking Matters Panel – PSW #677

Full episode and show notes


Ron Gula
President at Gula Tech Adventures

Since 2017, GTA has invested in dozens of cyber start-ups and funds and supported multiple cyber nonprofits and projects. Ron has served on the Board of Directors for a number of GTA’s portfolio companies and has been a steadfast mentor and advisor to many founders. Ron has also supported a variety of cyber nonprofits and think tanks, with both his substantive expertise and through philanthropic funding.

From 2002 to 2016, Ron was the co-founder and CEO of Tenable Network Security. Under Ron’s leadership, Tenable grew to 20,000 customers, raised $300m in venture capital, and grew revenues to $100 million annually; this positioned the company for a successful IPO in 2018, where it was valued at $3 billion.

Prior to founding Tenable, Ron was a cyber industry pioneer. Ron developed Dragon, one of the first commercial network intrusion detection systems, and he also ran risk mitigation for one of the first cloud companies. While serving as a US Air Force officer, Ron deployed network honeypots in the mid 90s for the US Defense Department (DOD) and served as a penetration tester at the National Security Agency (NSA), participating in some of the nation’s first cyber exercises.

For these efforts, Ron received in 2020 both the Northern Virginia Technology Council Cyber Investor of the Year award and the Baltimore Business Journal Power 10 CEO award.

Bill Swearingen
Founding Partner at TRIFIDENT

An industry leader in cyber defense strategy, with over 18 years of experience in both technical and executive cyber security roles. Bill has devoted my career to building and protecting critical infrastructure and Fortune 100 companies from advanced threats. Bill has direct experience from ‘hands on keyboard’ from being on the front lines, and in-depth understanding of the challenges security teams are faced with.

Recognized as an influential figure in the industry, I have established a prominent public profile through my strong public speaking abilities. As a keynote presenter at prestigious events such as BlackHat and DEF CON, I have effectively communicated complex cybersecurity concepts to large audiences, showcasing my expertise and thought leadership.

Bill is a big believer in “be nice” even when things get tough and “the harder you work, the luckier you get.” If you really want to get on my good side, show me something you made. 🙂

John Loucaides
SVP Strategy at Eclypsium

John has extensive history in hardware and firmware threats from experience at Intel and the United States government. At Intel he served as the Director of Advanced Threat Research, Platform Armoring and Resiliency, PSIRT, and was a CHIPSEC maintainer. Prior to this, he was Technical Team Lead for Specialized Platforms for the US government.

Cyndi Gula
Managing Partner at Gula Tech Adventures

Cyndi is a Managing Partner at Gula Tech Adventures which focuses on cyber technology, cyber policy and recruiting more people to the cyber workforce by rebranding the industry to Data Care. Since 2017, GTA has invested in dozens of cyber start-ups and funds and supported multiple cyber nonprofits and projects. Cyndi is a cyber start-up operations expert. She has started and run licensing, human resources, legal, facilities, accounting, marketing, channel, support and sales operations for both Tenable Network Security, which went public on the NASDAQ in 2018, and Network Security Wizards, where she was President and helped it grow to a successful exit 18 months after being founded. As a Gula Tech Adventures Managing Partner, she is helping our cyber start-ups scale and make important decisions about their organizational structure, facilities, product licensing, customer support, recruiting strategy, culture, managing their cash flow and having the processes in place to succeed and have fun. Cyndi is Chair of the Howard County Economic Development Authority Board, a 2016 LP graduate of Leadership Howard County, Board Member of Howard County Conservancy, and serves on the Board of Trustees of Howard County General Hospital. She has a Bachelor of Science in Glass Engineering from Alfred University.

Shane McCombs
COO at Innocent Lives Foundation

Shane comes to ILF with more than 25 years of experience in the tech industry, combined with more than a decade of experience in C-level roles. In those critical capacities, Shane led enterprise-wide initiatives within project management, customer relationship management and acquisition, policies and procedures, process improvement, and infrastructure. Shane is also an accomplished public speaker and trainer, focused on change management, professionalism, social engineering, and corporate security.

Chloé Messdaghi
VP of Strategy at Point3 Security

Chloé Messdaghi is the VP of Strategy at Point3 Security. In addition to her passion of keeping people safe and empowered both on and offline, she is also interested in increasing the numbers of marginalized genders in information security. She is the co-founder of Women of Security (WoSEC) and Hacking is NOT a Crime, and the founder of WeAreHackerz (WomenHackerz). She is a keynote speaker at major information security conferences and events, and serves as a trusted source for national and sector reporters and editors. She holds a Master of Science (M.S.) from The University of Edinburgh, and a BA in International Relations from University of California, Davis, as well as a Certificate in Entrepreneurship from Wharton and other professional certificates.


Principal Security Evangelist at Eclypsium
Professor at Roger Williams University
Sr. InfoSec Consultant at Online Business Sytems
Security Analyst at Black Hills Information Security
Product Security Research and Analysis Director at Finite State
Senior Cyber Advisor at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory
Director of Offensive Security & Research at Trimarc Security, Founder & CEO at Dark Element