Effective Aug. 1, Deputy Information Security Officer Zach Furst will become the new Chief Information Security Officer (CISO) and assume all leadership duties of the Information Security and Policy Office (ISPO). Shari Lewison will remain in ISPO, continuing to work on many initiatives and projects with which she is involved and working to ensure a smooth transition. Lewison initiated the change as a planned transition, as she is beginning to plan ahead for retirement and wants to ensure continuity and stability in this role.
Lewison has been a tremendous contributor over the past five years, having successfully led the merger of the academic and healthcare IT security teams, enabling effective collaboration in IT security across the entire institution. She was awarded the IT Leadership Award in 2019 for her ability to lead change and build bridges. Lewison is looking forward to supporting Furst and the team in any way she can, and a search will begin immediately for a new deputy chief information security officer.
Furst has been with the University of Iowa since 2015. He has served as the Deputy CISO since 2020; prior to that he was the Security Operations Director for the combined security team beginning in 2018. In addition to his roles in ISPO, he has been a member of the IT Leadership Development Team, most recently serving as the 2020-21 chair. Furst joined ITS after seven years as an officer in the Army, working in a variety of leadership roles for various units and organizations.
Lewison, Furst, and the ISPO team have developed a solid plan for the future and helped secure funding for those plans.
"This is a very challenging period for IT security and it's important to pursue those plans to improve the posture of the university," says Associate Vice President and Chief Information Officer Steve Fleagle. "We have an outstanding team and look forward to working with them to continue to provide outstanding IT security services for the university. We will continue to adapt, but we aren’t expecting to make dramatic changes in the direction of our security program."