Southern state officials and staff gathered in Birmingham for “The Future State: How Policymakers Can Understand and Incubate Cybersecurity, Technology, and Innovation in the South” Policy Masterclass. Nineteen members from eight CSG South states – Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee – participated in the masterclass.
Participants engaged in programming over two days, covering myriad topics and issues across the fields of cybersecurity, innovation, and technology. Briefings covered the importance of investing in rural innovation and expanding opportunities for rural citizens to join the tech workforce, Southern state innovation in biotechnology and remote medical care, the creation and future of the Alabama Innovation Corporation, trends in state information technology and cybersecurity, and how to respond to and prevent cyberattacks on K-12 public school systems. Attendees also toured the National Computer Forensics Institute (NCFI). They received senior staff briefings from the United States Secret Service and Alabama Attorney General’s Office and examined the various training pieces provided to state and local judicial and law enforcement members who study at the NCFI.
Experts from the Center on Rural Innovation, Southern Research Institute, OnMed, Alabama Innovation Corporation, Alabama Legislature, Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, National Association of State Chief Information Officers, North Carolina Department of Information Technology, West Virginia Office of Technology, and the Alabama State Department of Education briefed attendees.
The Masterclass was hosted by CSG South. By interacting with subject matter experts and colleagues from other Southern states, participants increased their knowledge of cybersecurity, government operations, workforce development, innovation, technology, and policies related to these issues.
The Masterclass participants included:
- Senator Sam Givhan, Alabama
- Representative Jeremy Gray, Alabama
- Representative David Faulkner, Alabama
- Ms. Jessica Sanders, Alabama
- Mr. Connor Johnston, Alabama
- Representative Carol Dalby, Arkansas
- Representative Jack Fortner, Arkansas
- Representative Roger Lynch, Arkansas
- Representative Leesa Hagan, Georgia
- Ms. Josselyn Hill, Georgia
- Representative Jason Hughes, Louisiana
- Representative Dale Goodin, Mississippi
- Representative Carl Mickens, Mississippi
- Representative Orlando Paden, Mississippi
- Representative Donnie Loftis, North Carolina
- Mr. Brian Shea, South Carolina
- Mr. Mark Hendrick, South Carolina
- Ms. Endra Curry, South Carolina
- Mr. Scott Sloan, Tennessee
Presentations:Alabama State Department of Education Center on Rural Innovation Examples of Innovation- OnMed Examples of Innovation – Southern Research Institute North Carolina Department of Information Technology National Association of State Chief Information Officers