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Upcoming defense summit to focus on warfighting innovations

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The Charleston Defense Contractors Association will focus on warfighting innovation at its upcoming defense summit.

The 13th annual summit is scheduled for Dec. 11 and 12 at the Charleston Area Convention Center.

Association President Heather Walker said the nonprofit organization serves as a regional industry and advocacy group for companies that support the U.S. military. The defense summit, the organization’s largest event, draws in companies from across the nation that are involved in information warfare technology.

The summit will include panel conversations, keynote speeches and an exhibition with companies showcasing technologies, capabilities and solutions. A speed networking event is scheduled during the summit, as is an Innovation Spotlight that will be similar to the ABC show Shark Tank.

In the Innovation Spotlight, summit sponsors and association members will present to a panel a summary of what they do and what their technology is. Awards will be given at the end.

The summit will also include training to obtain a certificate in Amazon Web Services cloud or Microsoft Azure cloud technology.

“So, we really try to invite — whether you’re a business development professional or you’re a technologist, or a software developer, or cybersecurity expert, really there’s something for everybody at the event,” Walker said.

Katie Arrington, a chief information security officer in the Defense Department, will speak at the summit about the Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification. The certification is intended to serve as a verification mechanism to ensure basic cyber hygiene and to protect unclassified information at Defense Department industry partners.

“So, what Katie has been working on, she’s done a fantastic job of basically going around the country and speaking to government and industry folks at all locations, sharing what she’s trying to do, getting feedback as sort of a listening session,” Walker said.

Other speakers at the summit will include representatives from NASA Solutions for Enterprise-wide Procurement, the Marine Corps and the Office of the Department of Defense Chief Information Officer.

Registration is available online. Innovation Spotlight submissions are due by Nov. 15.

Reach Shamira McCray at 843-849-3119.

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