Rising Stars

Marlene Roush: Data science educator

In addition to being a cyber data scientist at Leidos (one half of the recently split SAIC), Marlene Roush also teaches math at the Community College of Baltimore County. She started working there during graduate school and said she enjoys showing students who aren't in the math field how they can use it in their careers.

Roush said she also finds herself playing teacher outside the lecture halls when she is developing and optimizing analytics for Leidos.

"Most of the projects that I've worked on, it'll be just one math or statistics person and so you end up teaching other people or reminding them" of a class they took a long time ago, she said. "But they don't necessarily remember all of the details and the nuances you have to be careful with when you're dealing with mixed datasets."

The 2013 Rising Stars

Read about all of the winners

Roush, however, does remember and understand those details. She studied applied mathematics at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, and now uses numbers to counter cyberattacks in the intelligence and financial communities.

"It's really using a lot of the knowledge that I have about how to manipulate data and really searching data to find the interesting nuggets," she said.

Those nuggets allow Roush to build a plan of action to combat cyber enemies.

"The methodology really takes the military planning process for operations planning and translates it into the cyber world," she said. "So in traditional operations planning, most of it is done around a map or around physical objects, and in cyberspace, you don't necessarily have all those physical objects or a terrain map as the background for the planning. So we developed a methodology for how you do that in cyberspace."

Note: This article was updated on Oct. 31 to clarify Roush's employer.  While Roush was nominated for her work at the SAIC before that firm's Sept. 27 split into two companies, she is part of the half that became Leidos.

About the Author

Reid Davenport is an FCW editorial fellow. Connect with him on Twitter: @ReidDavenport.

FCW in Print

In the latest issue: Looking back on three decades of big stories in federal IT.

Featured

  • FCW @ 30 GPS

    FCW @ 30

    Since 1996, FCW has covered it all -- the major contracts, the disruptive technologies, the picayune scandals and the many, many people who make federal IT function. Here's a look back at six of the most significant stories.

  • Shutterstock image.

    A 'minibus' appropriations package could be in the cards

    A short-term funding bill is expected by Sept. 30 to keep the federal government operating through early December, but after that the options get more complicated.

  • Defense Secretary Ash Carter speaks at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in San Francisco

    DOD launches new tech hub in Austin

    The DOD is opening a new Defense Innovation Unit Experimental office in Austin, Texas, while Congress debates legislation that could defund DIUx.

  • Shutterstock image.

    Merged IT modernization bill punts on funding

    A House panel approved a new IT modernization bill that appears poised to pass, but key funding questions are left for appropriators.

  • General Frost

    Army wants cyber capability everywhere

    The Army's cyber director said cyber, electronic warfare and information operations must be integrated into warfighters' doctrine and training.

  • Rising Star 2013

    Meet the 2016 Rising Stars

    FCW honors 30 early-career leaders in federal IT.

Reader comments

Please post your comments here. Comments are moderated, so they may not appear immediately after submitting. We will not post comments that we consider abusive or off-topic.

Please type the letters/numbers you see above

More from 1105 Public Sector Media Group