IT Risk, Business Consequences ∞ March 17, 2006

March 17, 2006


With information technology becoming an increasingly important part of all enterprises, IT risk is gaining importance for CIOs and their business counterparts. However, the complexity of IT makes it very difficult to understand and make good decisions about IT risks. In the morning, we will discuss how IT systems and people affect four key enterprise risks. Then, we will examine how enterprises build effective processes to identify, prioritize, and address their IT risks. If done well, IT risk management can move beyond pure compliance to create new value for the enterprise. The highly interactive discussion will include research findings, best practices, video clips, and case studies drawing upon a three-year research project with more than 150 enterprises.

During the afternoon session, we will hear perspectives on IT risk from three veteran CIOs representing three different risk-sensitive industries: space exploration, energy, and banking.


9:00 a.m. – 10:00 a.m.                                         Continental breakfast and registration

10 a.m. – Noon                                                      Presentation and discussion with George Westerman

Noon – 1:00 p.m.                                                  Break

1:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m.                                          CIO presentations/panel

Pat Dunnington, Lyn McDermid, Bruce Summers, Lauren Hargraves


Patricia L. Dunnington is the Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). As NASA CIO, she provides the requisite leadership to transform the management of information technology (IT) capabilities and services to support and enable NASA’s mission. She ensures that the Agency’s information resource management (IRM) strategy is in alignment with NASA’s vision, mission, and strategic goals. Accordingly, Ms. Dunnington ensures the development of integrated IRM strategies, including standards, policies, NASA Enterprise Architecture, IT security, management, and operations. She has the responsibility, authority and accountability for ensuring that NASA’s information assets are selected, controlled and evaluated consistent with federal policies, procedures, and legislation. Ms. Dunnington is the NASA Champion for implementing the President’s Management Agenda (PMA) for E-Government.  Ms. Dunnington was appointed as the NASA CIO in 2003. Prior to this appointment, she had served as the NASA Deputy CIO in 2002 and as the CIO for the NASA Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, from 1996-2002. Prior to her assignment at NASA Langley, Ms. Dunnington had served in a number of increasingly responsible positions in the NASA Headquarters Office of Aero-Space Technology, including the CIO for that mission area and Manager of the Numerical Aerodynamic Simulation Program. She began her NASA career in 1982 as a Presidential Management Intern.  In transforming NASA’s information infrastructure to enable the mission, Ms. Dunnington has been recognized with numerous awards including NASA’s Exceptional Achievement Medal, NASA’s Exceptional Service Medal, and NASA’s Medal for Outstanding Leadership. Ms. Dunnington is a recognized leader in the federal CIO community and frequently speaks to industry and government groups on information technology strategies and leadership.  Ms. Dunnington received her undergraduate degree from The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C., and an M.G.A from the University of Maryland, College Park, MD.

Lauren A. Hargraves is senior vice president and manager of the Wholesale Product Office at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.   Prior to being named senior vice president, Ms. Hargraves had been vice president of the financial management and discount window in the Markets Group since July 2002.  The Wholesale Product Office is responsible for strategic planning, product development, and oversight of the Federal Reserve System’s Fedwire® funds service and securities services, as well as the national  settlement service.  Ms. Hargraves joined the bank in September 1985 as a research assistant in the developing economies division in the research group and in July 1994, she was appointed an officer of the bank and assigned to the international finance department. In December 1996, she was promoted to assistant vice president in the strategic development staff in the markets group.  In December 1999, she was promoted to vice president in the domestic money markets department.  Ms. Hargraves holds a B.S. degree from Trinity College, and a M.B.A. degree and a masters in international affairs from Columbia University.

Margaret E. ‘Lyn’ McDermid is senior vice president and chief information officer of Dominion Resources Services, Inc.  McDermid joined Virginia Power in 1982.  After holding various positions in Virginia Power’s Engineering & Construction Department, McDermid was named director-Administrative Services in 1986. She was promoted to vice president-Information Technology and chief information officer in October 1998, and was named to her current position in January 2000.  McDermid is chair of the board of trustees of Mary Baldwin College and chair of the board of directors of RichTech, formerly the Greater Richmond Technology Council. She is a member of the boards of directors of the CIO Forum and The Richmond Forum, and a lay member of the Third District Committee of the Virginia State Bar. She is serving her second three-year term as a member of the Dean’s Executive Advisory Council for the Robins School of Business at the University of Richmond. McDermid was designated a Class C director of the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond in 2007, and was named deputy chairman in 2009; she will assume the chairman position in 2011.  She has served on several state advisory boards, including the Chief Information Officer Advisory Board, the Virginia Research and Technology Advisory Council, and the Critical Infrastructure Protection Work Group, as well as the Foundation Board of J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College.  McDermid received her bachelor’s degree in business from Mary Baldwin College and her master’s degree in business administration from the University of Richmond.

George Westerman is a Research Scientist at MIT Sloan’s Center for Information Systems Research (CISR) and faculty chair for the course “IT for the Non-IT Executive.” His research explores how executives can effectively align and govern their strategy, technology, and organizational structures. For example, his latest research on IT leadership (with colleague Peter Weill) explains how effective IT leaders can enhance their organizations’ business agility and financial performance. His ongoing study of IT risk management describes how firms can use new governance processes to significantly improve their IT risk profiles and IT value. In an earlier study of bricks-and-click e-businesses, he found e-business organization structures that improved both online and offline performance.  Prior to earning his doctorate from Harvard Business School, George gained more than 15 years of experience in engineering and IT management. He works regularly with IT and business executives on improving IT capabilities and business value.