CISOs, We’re Back in Action!

Community Blog
Written by Laurel Hiestand

DECEMBER 28, 2021

After 20 months and hundreds of virtual events hosted, we are happily back in person! Evanta CISOs across North America came back to our in-person community gatherings this November and December. The excitement at the Executive Summits and Inner Circle dinners was unmistakable and electric, as security executives saw each other face-to-face after many months of global disruption. And yet, it felt like nothing had changed. Folks shook hands, made new connections, saw old friends and participated in a day of custom sessions. 

Take a look at a snapshot of the feedback we received from a few Executive Summits this year:


Wonderful to participate in an in-person event again. No virtual experience replaces the ability to have casual conversations, meet new contacts, share opinions, and have more interactive real-time conversations with sponsors.”

I very much enjoyed the entire experience and especially enjoyed the peer-to-peer discussions.”

Awesome to be back at an in-person event and see some colleagues for the first time in a couple of years, meet some new vendor representatives, and share with and learn from colleagues on issues affecting me in my day job.”

It was a great experience just to be in the same room with some many smart people going through the same pain points.  These events are so instrumental to grow the business and to allow us to bounce ideas off each other.”


There have been many engaging sessions hosted over the last couple of months, including thought-provoking discussions on risk, the future of talent, and leading with purpose. These were some of the participants’ favorite sessions of the day:

Hacking the Cyber Talent Squeeze. Two security leaders led an engaging discussion on what it takes to create new opportunities for the next generation to enter and thrive in a security career. For CISOs, it’s not enough to hire outside talent anymore. They are upskilling and reallocating talent to meet changing demand. In the midst of The Great Resignation, leaders are looking at what it takes to retain diverse talent as well, in addition to measuring the capabilities of their team based on talent versus tenure.

Company-Wide Risk Programs. Many risk management programs today have evolved to account for outside influences such as client contract requirements, board requests, and/or specific security incidents. But should these programs be more holistic, and built around the unique assets critical to each organization? A CISO in Boston shared a snapshot of their program where they discussed how they reoriented their risk program to be based on their enterprise’s unique assets. To gain critical buy-in, it’s important to move outside of the scope of information security and focus on how risk applies to the entire business. 

Rising to the Occasion — The CISO's Growing Power and Responsibility. With threat levels and vulnerabilities becoming more advanced in today’s hybrid workplace, company leadership is depending on the CISO to take charge, anticipate attacks and limit risks. Building relationships and successfully wielding the power of this position is crucial in this new, shifting environment. A CISO in Chicago talked about the importance of speaking to leadership in relatable, business-focused terms, and what it takes to not only survive, but grow stronger, in an ever-challenging business environment.



Another high point was the opportunity for security leaders to casually connect and network with one another in person. Our Peer-to-Peer Meetings match security leaders with similar interests and challenges for 25-minute, one-on-one sessions.

We are eagerly planning and awaiting a full year of in-person gatherings in our North American CISO communities in 2022. To find an upcoming CISO gathering in your area, check out our Calendar page. Hope to see you there!

Laurel Hiestand headshot

Laurel Hiestand

Content Director at Evanta, a Gartner Company


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