DHS hires DoD expert to coordinate interagency cyber efforts

Friday - 6/22/2012, 2:58pm EDT

The Homeland Security Department is adding yet another high-profile cyber expert to its staff.

Rosemary Wenchel, who has spent a majority of her career in the Defense Department working on cyber issues, moved to the National Protection and Programs Directorate as the new deputy assistant secretary for cybersecurity coordination, according to an email from DHS deputy under secretary for cybersecurity Mark Weatherford to staff obtained by Federal News Radio.

In her new role, Wenchel will use her long-time DoD experience to coordinate joint cybersecurity efforts between the two agencies, including the National Security Agency.

She also will oversee operations at the DHS-DoD Joint Coordination Element located at Fort Meade, Md.

Additionally, Wenchel will work with the DHS Science and Technology Directorate to make sure cybersecurity research and development efforts are coordinated with agency policy and operations.

Wenchel replaces Adm. Mike Brown, who retired in January.

Wenchel comes to DHS from DoD where she has been the director of Cyber, Information Operations and Strategic Studies in the in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Intelligence. She's been in that role where she oversaw departmental activities around policy development, guidance and oversight of information operations, since 2007, according to her profile on LinkedIn.

Before that she worked in several other areas in DoD, including as the deputy director for information operations, the director of the Navy's Tactical Exploitation of National Capabilities (TENCAP) and deputy director of battlespace awareness for the Navy.

Wenchel's decision to move to DHS comes as the two agencies are working more closely securing federal systems. DoD and DHS personnel have worked at the other's facilities over the last several years to improve coordination.

Wenchel becomes the fourth high-profile federal cyber expert to come to DHS over the last six months. She joins John Streufert, who came from the State Department, Weatherford, who came from the North American Electric Reliability Corporation, and Danny Toler, who also came to DHS from State.

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