Biden administration appoints Chris DeRusha as federal CISO
The Biden administration has picked Chris DeRusha, the former top cyber official on the Biden campaign, to fill the role of federal chief information security officer.
DeRusha’s appointment, first reported by CyberScoop, was made public on his LinkedIn profile on Monday night, and confirmed by acting Federal Chief Information Officer Maria Roat on Tuesday.
“Welcome aboard Chris DeRusha, our new Federal CISO!” Roat tweeted. The White House did not respond to The Hill’s request for comment on the appointment.
DeRusha served as CISO for the Biden campaign beginning in July. A Biden campaign spokesperson told The Hill at the time that DeRusha and other campaign cyber officials would “be central to strengthening the infrastructure we’ve built to mitigate cyber threats, bolster our voter protection efforts, and enhance the overall efficiency and security of the entire campaign.”
DeRusha served as a member of the Biden transition’s Technology Strategy and Delivery Team, and prior to that, served as chief security officer for the state of Michigan. He also previously served as a senior cybersecurity adviser at both the White House and the Department of Homeland Security during the Obama administration.
Suzanne Spaulding, the former under secretary of the predecessor agency to Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), tweeted Tuesday that “having worked with” DeRusha, he “will be a terrific Federal CISO.”
DeRusha joins a slate of other Biden cyber and tech picks, including Anne Neuberger, the current director of the National Security Agency’s Cybersecurity Directorate who Biden appointed to serve as deputy national security adviser for cyber and emerging technology earlier this month.
Reuters reported last week that Biden would soon nominate Rob Silvers to serve as director of CISA, replacing Christopher Krebs who was fired by former President Trump following his efforts to push back against disinformation and misinformation around the presidential election.
Reuters also reported that Jen Easterly, a former NSA official, is the leading candidate to serve as the newly created national cyber director at the White House, a position that will help coordinate cybersecurity operations for the federal government.
The White House has not formally announced either official.