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Shapiro Administration Selects Global IT Security Expert and Leader as New Cybersecurity Chief

11/03/2023

Amazon Web Services' James Sipe will be PA's next Chief Information Security Officer

Harrisburg, PA – Today, Secretary of Administration Neil Weaver announced that the Office of Administration has selected James Sipe, a seasoned cybersecurity leader who has worked with some of the largest companies in the world, to serve as the Commonwealth's next Chief Information Security Officer (CISO). Sipe will start as CISO on November 27. He currently oversees cybersecurity for Amazon's 25 largest global customers in the Amazon cloud environment.

The CISO leads the team that protects and defends the Commonwealth's IT systems and data from cyber-attacks and maintains the cybersecurity strategy, standards, and posture for agencies under the Governor's jurisdiction. The CISO's office also oversees cybersecurity governance, auditing, monitoring and compliance, risk management, vulnerability and threat management, incident management, forensic investigations, security awareness outreach and education, identity and access management, and agency assistance. 

"James is a widely respected IT leader who has managed cybersecurity and compliance for companies doing business across the globe and here in Pennsylvania," said Neil Weaver, Secretary of Administration. "His broad experience in a variety of industries has prepared James for the job of protecting the Commonwealth's data and securing the technology infrastructure that supports 80,000 state employees and thousands of programs and services delivered each day by state agencies."

The CISO's office also works collaboratively with local governments to bolster their cybersecurity capabilities through cost effective shared services for security awareness training, anti-phishing exercise capabilities, vulnerability testing, and network intrusion monitoring. The office is currently working with the Governor's Office of Homeland Security, Pennsylvania Emergency Management Agency, other state agencies, and local government associations to continue and expand these services as part of a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy under the State and Local Government Cybersecurity Grant Program (SLGCP).

"I am excited to bring my 20-plus years of experience leading, advising, and working on cybersecurity and compliance for some of the world's largest companies to my new role as CISO for the Commonwealth," said Sipe. "I look forward to building on the strong foundations of collaboration and leadership that are already in place to keep Pennsylvania at the forefront among states for cybersecurity."

Read more about Sipe below.

James Sipe
[link to headshot]

James Sipe has over 20 years of cybersecurity experience and leadership, having worked for and advised companies across diverse industries. He currently leads an international team at Amazon Web Services that is responsible for IT security and technical guidance for the company's 25 largest global customers. Prior to Amazon, James was an IT security executive for MessageBird, a digital communications and marketing company with over 29,000 customers worldwide, including Google, Facebook, and Uber. He has also lead cybersecurity and compliance for global firms in hospitality and entertainment, accounting, management consulting, media and advertising, weather and environmental monitoring, modular space and storage, building technology, and engineered materials. A Pennsylvania resident, James has worked for businesses with headquarters or offices in the state, including Hershey Entertainment and Resorts Company, Glatfelter, and Johnson Controls.

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