News in Brief

USPS retirement, HHS cyber conference and NATO cyber defense

Patrick Donahoe_USPS

Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe is retiring after nearly four decades at the U.S. Postal Service.

Postmaster General Donahoe to retire

Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe is retiring effective Feb. 1, 2015, ending a 39-year career with the U.S. Postal Service.

He has served as postmaster general and CEO of USPS since October 2010.

Chief Operating Officer Megan Brennan will succeed Donahoe. She will be the first woman to serve as postmaster general.

Donahoe took over USPS at a time of financial crisis and technological revolution, and the agency often struggled to respond to the challenges posed by electronic communications.

"Pat was the calm in the financial storm," said Mickey Barnett, chairman of the USPS Board of Governors, at a meeting on Nov. 14. "He ignored the naysayers and went forward with his team and built a comprehensive plan for the future of the organization, made tough decisions and executed against those decisions."

Donahoe began his USPS career as a clerk while attending the University of Pittsburgh. He worked his way up through the ranks to deputy postmaster general and COO before moving into the top spot in 2010.

HHS sets cyber conference schedule

The Department of Health and Human Services' biannual Tech Exchange cybersecurity conference is scheduled for Dec. 2 at HHS.

The conference promotes the exchange of ideas, best practices, lessons learned and stories of cybersecurity success at federal agencies. It is open to all federal cybersecurity employees and contractors, but attendees are encouraged to register online for the event's four tracks: privacy, forensic incident response, management security strategies and a series on classified topics, which will require an active security clearance as well as preregistration.

Speakers include Stewart Baker, former assistant secretary for policy at the Department of Homeland Security; Jane Holl Lute, former deputy secretary at DHS; Karen Evans, former administrator of e-government and IT at the Office of Management and Budget; and representatives from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, State Department and DHS' U.S. Computer Emergency Readiness Team.

Registration for the classified track closes Nov. 18.

NATO helping Jordan with Islamic State cyber threat

NATO began helping Jordan with that country's cyber defense against Islamic State militants last month, officials said Nov. 14.

The project involves a group of experts "setting up cyber defense of Jordan's key infrastructure points," such as power grids and dams, according to the announcement.

NATO has shown a strong focus on cybersecurity recently and affirmed the issue as one of its core areas of collective defense at a summit in September.

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