April 12, 2021 – After a nationwide search, Rockville, MD-based executive search firm JDG Associates has helped to place Matthew Travis as the first chief executive officer for the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification Accreditation Body (CMMC-AB). Principal Paul Belford led the assignment. In his new role, Mr. Travis oversees the day-to-day development and management of the CMMC-AB to support the goals and objectives of its ultimate customer, the Department of Defense (DoD). “We are extremely thrilled to have someone as respected and accomplished as Mr. Travis lead the Accreditation Body,’ said Karlton Johnson, chair of the board of directors. “His organizational development skills as well as in-depth understanding of security and the federal government will enable us to continue to quickly ramp-up AB operations and execute against our mission in service of the nation’s defense.”
Most recently, Mr. Travis served as the first deputy director of the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), the nation’s leading civilian cybersecurity agency. There he designed and led the internal transformation of the organization following its creation in 2018. He was responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the $2 billion, 2,000-employee agency.
Mr. Travis said that joining and leading the CMMC-AB is a tremendous opportunity. “I look forward to using my collective experiences of running a security company start-up as well as my time at CISA, where I focused on supply chain risk, to ensure we mitigate risks as they relate to both the DoD and the contractor community,” he said. “There is no more important cyber mission right now than building a trusted, verified and resilient cybersecurity ecosystem within the defense industrial base. When we look at where true cyber risk currently resides, the CMMC mission is a critical component of the safety and security of our nation and its citizens.”
Prior to CISA, Mr. Travis served as vice president for homeland security at Cadmus, a security, energy and environmental professional services firm. He was also a co-founder of start-up Obsidian Analysis, a Washington, D.C.-based security consultancy acquired by Cadmus in 2016. A former naval officer, he served aboard the guided-missile frigate USS Carr as a White House liaison to the Secretary of the Navy.
Reporting to CMMC-AB’s board of directors, Mr. Travis oversees staffing and supervising the organization’s C-suite executives. He has responsibility for the following functional areas: accreditation, certification, training, assessment, operations, communications and finance/accounting.
A Broad Spectrum of Stakeholders
Mr. Travis is charged with overall headquarters administration and board governance. He has direct responsibility for and implementation of CMMC-AB’s organizational outreach and representation across a broad spectrum of stakeholders, including DoD, DSC and the CMMC ecosystem, among other public and private entities in the U.S. and abroad.
In conducting the assignment, JDG Associates said that CMMC-AB “presents a unique opportunity to grow a purposeful business from the ground up that will significantly strengthen U.S. national security and inspire other nations of the world to deploy similar programs. The role requires the combination of an entrepreneurial mindset, exceptional managerial ability, and the drive and professionalism needed to lead the organization from design and build-out on to the execution of a program that will significantly strengthen the nation’s security with minimal to zero impact on the DSC’s efficiency and effectiveness.”
The DoD released the cybersecurity maturity model certification to provide a unified approach for implementing increased resilience against cybersecurity attacks across the DSC to significantly reduce the risk of compromise to sensitive defense information located on contractor’s information systems. Now in start-up mode, CMMC-AB has been operating as both a volunteer board-led and volunteer managed organization.
Veteran Search Consultants
JDG Associates has been providing executive recruitment services to Fortune 1000 corporations, associations and non-profits, federal, state and local governments, research and consulting firms and defense contractors since 1973. The firm’s research-intensive process and personal approach have resulted in more than 4,000 senior-level searches across a broad spectrum of industries and disciplines in the Washington, D.C. region and nationally.
Rockville, MD-based executive search firm JDG Associates has assisted the Library of Congress in the selection of Shira Perlmutter as its Register of Copyrights. Ms. Perlmutter will step into the role in late October and will assume leadership of the organization during its 150th year. Darren DeGioia, president of the search firm, led the assignment.
“Shira brings to this role a deep knowledge of domestic and international copyright law and policy and a background in negotiating international intellectual property agreements. She has experience working with a wide range of stakeholders and finding common ground on complex issues,” said Carla Hayden, Librarian of Congress.
Darren DeGioia serves as president of JDG. He conducts senior-level search assignments for research and consulting organizations as well as the public sector. His areas of expertise include information technology, accounting and finance, the quantitative sciences, operations / general management, marketing and communications. Prior to joining JDG, Mr. DeGioia spent four years in the hospitality industry with the Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts and Sheraton Hotels.
Mr. Belford has completed nearly 300 association searches, mostly at the CEO level. A professional search consultant since 1990, he joined JDG Associates in 1993. His clients have ranged in size from regional and state groups with staffs of 10 or fewer to national organizations with budgets up to $75 million. Mr. Belford has worked with trade associations and professional societies from a wide range of service areas including heavy industry, information technology, finance, healthcare, engineering, government relations, communications, finance and administration.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media