Dr. Dena Haritos Tsamitis

Barbara Lazarus Professor in Information Networking; Director, Information Networking Institute; Founding Director, Education, Training and Outreach, CyLab, Carnegie Mellon

Dena Haritos Tsamitis has led Carnegie Mellon University's (CMU) Information Networking Institute (INI) as director since 2004. Her efforts have prepared the next generation of information networking, security and mobility professionals equipped to be the movers and shakers of the tech industry. A student advocate and mentor of women in technology, Dena is passionate about increasing diversity in STEM fields. Under her leadership, Carnegie Mellon earned three distinct cybersecurity designations from federal agencies as a National Center of Academic Excellence for its merits in information assurance and cyber defense, research and cyber operations. Through these efforts, Dena is the principal investigator on the National Science Foundation (NSF) CyberCorps® Scholarship for Service (SFS) and the Department of Defense Information Assurance Scholarship Program (IASP) and has been awarded approximately $28M in federal scholarships under these programs for students who serve our nation. Dena is a founding director of Carnegie Mellon CyLab, for which she spearheaded efforts in cybersecurity education, training and outreach. Among other education initiatives, she led the NSF-funded Information Assurance Capacity Building Program (IACBP), an intensive summer program to help build information assurance education and research capacity at minority-serving colleges and universities. Ninety-one faculty from 48 institutions over nine years benefitted from this program. Currently, she is a trustee of the American College of Greece and serves on the board of advisors for the Executive Women's Forum, RedMarlin, Inc., Minorities in Cybersecurity, Prime Tech Partners and the Norfolk State University Information Assurance Research, Education and Development Institute. Carnegie Mellon honored Dena with the 2012 Barbara Lazarus Award for Graduate Student and Junior Faculty Mentoring and in 2017, she was named as the first recipient of the endowed Barbara Lazarus Professorship in Information Networking. For her leadership and impact, Dena was named 2018 Woman in IT Security Power Player by SC Magazine and received the 2008 Women of Influence Award, presented by Alta Associates and CSO Magazine. Prior to joining Carnegie Mellon in 2000, Dena had a variety of technology roles in industry. She holds a bachelor’s degree in information science from the University of Pittsburgh, a master’s degree in instructional technology from Duquesne University and a doctorate in higher education management from the University of Pennsylvania.