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Helping Foster Kids Become Cyber Warriors


Foster Warriors has a simple mission - to give the estimated half a million kids and teens currently in foster care in the United States a chance at studies and a career in the exciting and rewarding field of cybersecurity. An opportunity to give foster kids hope and a future, to give foster kids real role models they can relate to, and to turn the word foster into a badge of honor and pride. Learn more about the program.


Pairing Foster Warriors With Military Warriors


Foster Warriors is developing a pilot program to work with military veterans who are also interested in the same career path, so that both groups can encourage and support each other.

Vets and foster kids have lots in common, and for all the wrong reasons. PTSD and other mental health issues are common, as are high rates of depression, suicide, and homelessness. Both groups are drawn to the idea of noble causes, a real purpose, and any kind of family – even if only a virtual one.




Neal O'Farrell is one of the first generation of cybersecurity and privacy experts, with more than 35 years global experience. And he's also one of the world's most unlikely security experts. He's always had a passion for education, and was an advisor to the first ever state cybersecurity apprenticeship program, created in California, and is currently a member of the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) K-12 Sub Working Group. Neal is also Executive Director of the Identity Theft Council, a Fellow of the EP3 Foundation, and former member of the Federal Communications Commission's Cybersecurity Roundtable. Learn more about him.




Deneen DeFiore, SVP, Global Chief Information & Product Security Officer, GE Aviation and former Executive CISO, GE Information Security Technology Center.

Michael Fillios, CEO of IT Ally, Leader of the Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce IT Roundtable, and former CIO for Fifth Third Bank.

Gary Warzala, former CISO for Fifth Third Bank, PNC Bank, VISA, and Aon.

Vincent Scott, former Director of Cyber Security and Privacy at PwC and lead for Global Cyber Security Detection and Response at Procter and Gamble.

David Manaster, Technical Information Security Leader, Procter and Gamble.

Pete Renneker, Managing Director, Deloitte.

Helen Patton, CISO, the Ohio State University. 

Dr. John DeGarmo, founder of the Foster Care Institute.

Joyous "Joy" Huggins, 21 years in foster care, Navy veteran, cybersecurity professional, founder of the Defender Academy & Y-CND.

Nicole Torrez, cybersecurity lead, Lockheed Martin, veteran, former foster kid, current foster parent.