Ten New Members Named to Strategic Advisory Board
The Computer Science Department is pleased to welcome ten new members to the department’s Strategic Advisory Board (SAB):
- Joe Aguayo: SVP, Threat Hunting & Critical Infrastructure Protection at Truist
- Matt Hambrick*: Sr. Director of ONTAP Core Software at NetApp
- Chuck Kesler*: Chief Information Security Officer at Pendo
- Brian Onorio*: Serial Entrepreneur, Advisor at Yachtly
- Michelle Peck*: Director, Enterprise Architecture @ BCBS of NC
- Alagu Periyannan* - Co-founder & CTO of BlueJeans by Verizon
- Andrew Phillips – Sr. Director of Engineering at Citrix
- Andrew Porter – Executive Director, Enterprise Technology Architecture at Merck
- Jerry Tillman* - VP, IBM Cloud Platform Services at IBM
- Erkang Zheng* - Founder & CEO of
*NC State Alumni
The Strategic Advisory Board (SAB) is a distinguished group of leaders who collectively play a critical role in shaping the department’s vision and strategic focus. The group provides real-world insight, direction and guidance, and as such is central to the department’s strategic planning process. The role of the SAB is frequently cited as a significant departmental strength during accreditation reviews.
Launched more than two decades ago as the Industrial Advisory Council (IAC) by former department head, Dr. Alan Tharp, the board has evolved over the years to include term limits and an expansion of focus beyond industry representation. In the early 2000’s, the IAC was renamed the “Strategic Advisory Board” (SAB), reflecting a desire to expand representation to include industry, government and academic leaders.
Over the last two decades, the SAB has been instrumental in helping the department formulate strategies and plans to launch new academic tracks and concentrations, inject essential soft skills into the curriculum (leadership, communication and collaborative skills), and develop communication and marketing strategies to help shape external perspectives. The SAB has also proactively supported the department’s diversity initiatives, with individual members collectively launching the Diversity in Computer Science Endowment, which gives a substantial scholarship each year to one or more underrepresented students studying computer science at NC State. The endowment carries a current value of over $167,000 with a goal of growing to over $250,000. Interested donors can join the SAB in supporting this initiative here.
The SAB meets annually on campus and acts as a virtual working team through member involvement on subcommittees, executive panels, search committees and other engagement opportunities. Each term with the SAB group is three years in length and membership may be renewed for a second term.
Dr. Gregg Rothermel, Professor and Department Head for the NC State Department of Computer Science expressed his gratitude to the new members. "With the support of the state’s ‘Engineering North Carolina’s Future’ initiative, we are positioned to grow substantially over the next few years. We find ourselves facing strategic decisions that will impact the department for decades to come,” said Rothermel. “We depend greatly on our SAB to provide us guidance and direction that will help us align our strategic plans with real-world needs, and ensure that we can continue to play a significant role in providing the talent and research that fuels the economy of North Carolina and beyond.”
Ken Tate, Director of Engagement & External relations, who helps coordinate the SAB’s activities, said, “This is the largest group of new members we’ve ever had, and arguably one of the most seasoned and diverse too. These new additions to the board bring with them tremendous experience and wisdom that will benefit us greatly as we shape the future of this department."
The SAB is currently chaired by Kimberly Calhoun, Founder and CEO of Guardianator and Senior Executive Producer of MoneyMasters.TV.
The board holds its annual meeting this week in Raleigh, where it will provide guidance on matters related to a variety of undergraduate, graduate, accreditation, external relations, and DEI-related initiatives.
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