I am mission success: Chris Ickles

  • Posted: Wednesday, November 30, 2022, 12:03 pm

Chris Ickles, deputy chief information security officer at Pantex
Meet Chris Ickles, deputy chief information security officer at Pantex, who plays a key role in the security and strategic defense of our network and systems.

All views and opinions are the employee’s and do not necessarily reflect those of CNS.

While cybersecurity is frequently regarded as the act of protecting a network of information and systems from theft or damage, a key element of its definition and study is acknowledging how people factor into its defense and practice.

Many information theft cases are a result of human error due to negligence or lack of cybersecurity awareness. It’s important to recognize the impact we all have in safekeeping our technology.

As a key expert, leader, and direct support to the site, Pantex’s Chris Ickles is integral to the strategic development and operations of CNS's Cybersecurity programs.

By ensuring that our interconnected network of information, systems, and people are protected in the digital landscape, Ickles focuses on CNS's daily cybersecurity defense posture in analyzing risk balanced security measures and forming strategies against cyber threats.

What daily task lets you know you are helping achieve the CNS mission?
Cybersecurity is multifaceted. It has a primary responsibility to protect and defend our systems and our data. This precipitates actions across the entire enterprise that begin with security awareness, training, policies, procedures, requirements, testing, verification, and validation of all systems and users that support our mission.

Are you doing what you envisioned as a young adult? If so, describe how you got here.
My professional background originates in networking. It started while working in public school systems with a passion for technology. As far as doing what I envisioned for myself as a young adult, no. I graduated college with a bachelor’s degree in science and majored in chemistry and biology with a minor in math, but I was hooked on computers by the time I graduated. This quickly became my passion.

What CNS principle drives you to be successful?
My drive comes from the principle of continuous improvement. This mindset involves personal knowledge and skill growth as well as system improvements. We all benefit from a learning environment both at work and at home. Sometimes we teach and sometimes we learn. We need to expect daily opportunities for both.

What work advice would you offer someone who is starting work at Pantex?
Fully comprehend the job they are hired to do (e.g., role, responsibility, work result, impacts of success). Your professional approach to your work is important to our mission and impacts the nation.

What one thing would your coworkers be surprised to know about you?
I taught high school chemistry three years prior to entering IT and networking.