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This podcast explores various aspects of careers in intelligence and national security, including insights from professionals in the field, advice on career paths, educational requirements, and discussions on current trends and challenges including talent acquisition and retention, diversity issues, and the range of opportunities across the public, private and academic sectors.
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On this special episode of the Intelligence Career Conversations Podcast, we welcome Stephanie La Rue, Chief of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility, ODNI! Moderated by Bishop Garrison, VP for Policy INSA, Ms. La Rue shares her responsibilities and projects in her current position, the role her mentors have played in her career journey, how the IC is working to meet diversity and inclusion goals, current workforce trends and challenges, and more!
Stephanie La Rue
Chief of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Accessibility
Stephanie A. La Rue, Esq. leads efforts to advance diversity, equity, inclusion, and accessibility (DEIA) across the IC enterprise, serving as a principal advisor to the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) and IC senior leadership. Stephanie represents the IC on all DEIA-related matters, including Congressional oversight. Stephanie negotiates and justifies National Intelligence Program funding for the DEIA mission with the Office of Management and Budget. She also serves as the IC representative to five White House initiatives focused on advancing educational equity and economic opportunity for underrepresented communities.
Stephanie brings more than a decade of leadership and national security experience to the role, including her most recent position as the chief diversity strategist for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA). Stephanie led the development and execution of CIA's multi-year diversity and inclusion strategy.
Tune in to hear Dominique Cooper, Principal Consultant, CCG, share her career trajectory, from NGA to Silicon Valley to a DIB contractor. She also delves into her mentorships and how she obtained and cultivated these relationships.
Tune in to hear Trent Teyema, Founder & President, CSG Strategies, Inc., share his inspiration for joining the IC and the steps he took to realize his dream of joining the FBI. He also shares advice for young professionals seeking to serve in government and senior professionals looking to transition to industry!
Founder & President
CSG Strategies, Inc.
Trent Teyema (FBI Special Agent - SES retired) is the founder and president of CSG Strategies, Inc., a national security consultancy which specializes in the security of cyber, space, and technology through policy and practice of risk mitigation. Mr. Teyema has more than three decades in the field of law enforcement, cybersecurity, and critical infrastructure protection.
Mr. Teyema was twice appointed to cybersecurity policy roles at The White House during the Bush '43 and Obama '44 Administrations. He retired from the FBI as the Cyber Division's Chief of Cyber Readiness and Chief Operating Officer (COO). Mr. Teyema founded and led the FBI's National Cyber Investigative Joint Task Force (NCIJTF).
On this episode of the ICC, Jim Donnelly is joined by Nicole Pilkus, Principal Deputy Director, Office of Policy and Strategy, NRO. Ms. Pilkus discusses her 25+ year career journey including her educational path, goal-setting tips, evolving expectations of the workforce...and more!
Principal Deputy Director, Office of Policy and Strategy
Currently serving as Principal Deputy Director in the NRO's Office of Policy and Strategy, Nicole Pilkus is dynamic national security professional with more than 25 years of experience. She specializes in integrated operations and collaborative efforts spanning multiple agencies, functions, and/or nations and has held a wide range of staff, analytic, and managerial positions in both the public and private sectors.
On this episode of the ICC podcast, we are pleased to welcome Sarah McPeak, Lead Technical Specialist, Maxar, to discuss her academic journey, decision to pursue a career in geospatial intelligence, time in the Army and transition to the private sector, commitment to continuous learning, and more!
Lead Technical Specialist
Sarah is a lead technical specialist at Maxar. She recently received the Edwin H. Land Industry Award at INSA's 2023 Achievement Awards Ceremony. Sarah was selected for her exceptional technical proficiency, demonstrated leadership, and inspiring work ethic supporting national security. Prior to her current role at Maxar, Sarah served in the US Army as a Geospatial Engineer.
On this episode of the ICC podcast, Bishop Garrison, VP for Policy, INSA, discusses his career path, navigating the shift from military service to the private and public sector. He shares insights on effective mentorship, offers guidance for aspiring mentors and shares advice for young professionals!
Vice President for Policy
Bishop Garrison is a senior national security executive, veteran, and writer who has served in the military, presidential administrations and campaigns, the nonprofit community, and the private sector throughout his 20-year career. In addition to founding Orange Court Strategies, he previously served as the Vice President for Government Affairs and Public Policy at Paravision.AI. Most recently, he served in the Biden Administration in the Senior Executive Service and served as the Senior Advisor to the Secretary of Defense for Human Capital and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
Bishop attended the United States Military Academy at West Point graduating in 2002. He served two tours in Iraq with the U.S. Army. Following his service, Bishop graduated from the William and Mary School of Law in Williamsburg, VA. He is the recipient of two Bronze Stars, a Meritorious Service Medal, and a Combat Action Badge. His civilian accolades and awards include multiple medals from the Office of the Secretary of Defense as well as several citations from the Department of Homeland Security and the Obama administration’s White House. He is also a recipient of the Taylor Reveley “Citizen Lawyer” Award from the College of William and Mary Law School.
On the latest episode of the ICC's podcast, Austin Wang, VP of Intelligence, MITRE discusses his Marine Corps and CIA service, varying paths into the IC workforce, best practices for growing your IC career...and more!
Vice President for Intelligence
Austin Y. Wang is vice president, intelligence at MITRE. In this role, he leads MITRE’s efforts to drive whole-of-nation, joint, and multi-agency solutions through integration across the intelligence community and our larger national security enterprise, while shaping MITRE’s and our nation’s response to national security challenges. A senior intelligence community executive with nearly 30 years in leadership roles, Wang joined MITRE after 21 years with the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), most recently as a senior executive and clandestine technical operations lead.
On this episode of the ICC podcast, Cadie Hopkins Federal, Altana AI & Co-Founder, Iron Butterfly Media, discusses her nontraditional career journey, how she sees the community evolving, value of mentors and giving back, and the importance of staying true to who you are.
Federal, Atlanta AI and Co-Founder, Iron Butterfly Media
Cadie Hopkins has founded, built, and led multiple organizations committed to creativity, innovation, and the growth, mentorship, and empowerment of individuals across the national security community. She currently works at Altana AI, a start-up technology company building the map of global supply chain, where she leads a federal business subvertical supporting the US national security mission. She also co-founded the Iron Butterfly Podcast and Iron Butterfly Media, which is currently producing and directing the first documentary feature film about women in the intelligence community. Lastly, she co-founded the Command Purpose Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization serving US military veteran women and leaders throughout life transitions. She previously served as an intelligence analyst at Defense Intelligence Agency.
On this week’s episode of the ICC podcast, we are thrilled to welcome Peter Kant, Chairman and CEO of Enabled Intelligence. Mr. Kant discusses his career journey in the IC. Mr. Kant discusses his career journey including advice for setting career goals, developing and honing technical skill sets, leveraging neurodiverse capabilities, the workforce...and more!
Enabled Intelligence, Inc
Peter Kant is the Founder and CEO of Enabled Intelligence, Inc, an artificial intelligence technology company providing accurate data labeling and AI technology development for U.S. defense and intelligence agencies while providing meaningful high-tech employment to veterans and neurodiverse professionals. Peter has two decades of experience at the nexus of business, government, technology and policy including leadership positions in state and federal government, large companies, start-ups, and non-profits. He also currently serves on multiple corporate boards and advisory boards of venture funds including Culpepper Garden, Distributed Spectrum, Ditto, Picogrid, and Spectrohm.
On this week’s episode, Likia Hawkins, President and CEO of Steel Point Solutions, joins host Jim Donnelly to discuss the importance of building trust, being fearless, and the career-enhancing power of allies, champions, and mentors.
President and CEO
Steel Point Solutions
Likia Hawkins is the President and CEO of Steel Point Solutions, LLC, a business solutions provider specializing in digital transformation, possesses a wealth of business ownership, technology, analytics, policy, governance, and economic insight centralnto positioning her firm as a small business disrupter in the public sector space. She leads an award-winning small business recognized for its customer satisfaction and delivery excellence. She has used her experience as a government civilian, federal contractor, and entrepreneur to influence Steel Point’s business strategy with a keen focus on operational efficiency, economic stewardship, relationship management, and strategic partnering. Her leadership has led to her firm receiving several awards and recognitions from clients, sales totaling approximately $40m, several industry certifications, and performance/customer satisfaction ratings of Excellent or Very Good. Known as an astute and prepared entrepreneur, Likia has positioned Steel Point for its next level of growth.
On this first episode of the ICC podcast, Kevin Meiners, former Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Enterprise Capacity, ODNI, joins host Jim Donnelly for a discussion about IC careers including his thoughts on whether there is a difference between "green and blue badgers", importance of mentors, value of finding your tribe (and sometimes blazing your own path!), and tips for building meaningful mentor/mentee relationships.
Kevin P. Meiners
36 Years in the DoD and IC
Consultant and Managing Member
Huddle Up Associates LLC
In his most recent position in his federal government career until he retired in 2020, Kevin Meiners served in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (ODNI) since July 2013 where, in his capacity as Deputy Director of National Intelligence for Enterprise Capacity, he was responsible for all matters pertaining to the National Intelligence Program (NIP), including resources, workforce, systems acquisition, advanced technology and facilities within the Intelligence Community, on behalf of the Director of National Intelligence.
ABOUT THE HOST
Centerstone Executive Search and Consulting
Jim Donnelly is a veteran search executive, who has over 25 years of talent acquisition experience in the cyber, intelligence, and federal healthcare sectors. His senior-level executive searches have represented a diverse portfolio of clients in the defense, intelligence, and federal civilian markets, covering functional areas such as operations, business development, engineering, and corporate leadership.