Governing Body Spotlight

Governing Body Member of the Houston CISO Community

Keith Turpin


The Friedkin Group Inc

Keith Turpin is the chief information security officer at The Friedkin Group, a multi-billion-dollar consortium of automotive, hospitality, entertainment, sports and adventure companies including Gulf States Toyota (GST), Gulf States Financial Services (GSFS), US AutoLogistics (USAL), Auberge Resorts Collection, A.S. Roma Soccer, Ascent Automotive Group, Imperative Entertainment, and NEON Entertainment, among others. 

His role requires him to work closely with multiple IT leaders, representing many different companies, with vastly different priorities, regulatory requirements and risk exposure. This means understanding the business needs and finding effective ways to protect each organization’s assets, associates and interests from cyber threats, while at the same time enabling the business to succeed. 

A fun fact about Keith is that for 15 years, he served as director of an intercollegiate engineering competition where students built and raced human powered vehicles made from paper products.

Learn more about the Houston CISO community here.

Give us a brief overview of the path that led to your current role.

My professional journey started as a manufacturing engineer at The Boeing Company, where I spearheaded engineering process improvements for the 747. As my career progressed, I transitioned to managing engineering IT systems, and my contributions toward resolving complex access management challenges paved the way for my recruitment into Boeing’s information security organization where I rose to the role of Technical Fellow. 

I collaborated with institutions such as the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), the International Standards Organization (ISO), and the Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) to help develop international best practices. Those efforts led to me being offered my first CISO role with Universal Weather and Aviation in 2014. In 2019, I was recruited by The Friedkin Group into my current role as their CISO.

What is one of your guiding leadership principles?

Empowering autonomy and individual ownership to cultivate a motivated, agile, and innovative organization is probably the core to my approach.

What is the greatest challenge CISOs face today, and how are you addressing it?

We are at a point where technology is going through a rapid evolution, and it is unclear what effect this will have on the enterprise risk landscape. We must both embrace risk in order to leverage technical innovations while at the same time manage that risk in order to protect the organizations from unacceptable negative impacts.

What is the key to success for someone just starting out as a CISO?

You need to build positive relationships with the stakeholders your security program will work with on a regular basis and ensure that you can communicate complex technical concepts in a non-technical manner that helps those stakeholders understand cyber risk and your strategy to manage it.

How do you measure success as a leader?

For myself, one of the core measurements is whether I am meeting the commitments I made to both my own organization and to the company’s leadership. Basically, am I doing what I said I would do?

What is the value of being a member of the Evanta community?

We are stronger as a community than as individuals. We all see cyber risk through the limited lens of our own experience. Participation in Evanta helps us engage with other leaders facing similar issues and can significantly expand our perspective.

Evanta Governing Body members share their insights and leadership perspectives to shape the agendas and topics that address the top priorities impacting business leaders today.

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