Biography of Rita Foster
Infrastructure Security Advisor, Idaho National Lab
Rita Foster is the energy sector infrastructure security strategic advisor for Infrastructure Security department at the Idaho National Laboratory. Her focus has been research direction for the electric sector including insights to all-hazard threats (cyber, electro-magnetic, and physical). She identifies strategy and direction of research, testing and assessment activities at the Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) and control systems test beds and contributes in thought leadership. She serves on technical lead for multiple projects creating agile response capabilities. Department of Homeland Security Secretary, Janet Napolitano, appointed her to the strategic advisory council on cyber skills in 2012. Rita has been national recognized for research leadership in control system cyber security (Department of Defense Team of the Year 2016, SANS Innovation Award 2011, SCADA Leadership Award 2009) and control systems development (White House’s “2001 Closing the Circle’” and DOE 2001 National P2 Pollution Prevention Award). She has been invited to brief legislators, regulators (state and federal), and international policy makers on the cyber security issues with critical infrastructure. Rita has worked with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Energy, and industry (vendors and asset owners), participated in military exercises and other entities as a subject matter expert for cyber security of control systems for 13 years. She has worked at the lab for 28 years and has served as a technical lead for integrating control systems into a supervisory control for the certification and transport of transuranic waste which resulted in three national awards for products developed and vision. Her process control experience includes integrating over a dozen control systems for supervisory control, the training simulator for the advanced test reactor, HVAC for nuclear waste storage facilities, and command and control for military projects. Rita has served as a subject matter expert for networks and security for a large military integration program. Prior to the lab, she worked for a university computer center responsible for their network infrastructure while getting her degree in Computer Information Systems from Idaho State University.