March is a month of changes. We see winter beginning to recede (we hope!) and spring begins to show. The vernal equinox is around March 20 and heralds a return to more light than dark.
March is the month I was born (or hatched, depending on your mythos). My wonderful sister was also born in March. So were several dear friends. March is a month of beginnings.
Unfortunately, March is also a month of endings. Two years ago, I blogged about the untimely passing of three security pioneers, all good friends of mine: Kevin Ziese, Howard Schmidt, and Becky Bace. As I noted, Becky’s passing was a particularly cruel shock, as her death unexpectedly occurred only a few days after spending time with her.
I was reminded of the three of them (and my friends Ken and Wyatt and Gene, to name a few more) as I attended this year’s RSA Conference. As I walked the exhibit floor, I had a sense that I might look up and see one of them, as I did nearly every year, walking between sessions or stopping at booths. We’d compare notes about what we thought was particularly good or particularly awful — our comparisons were usually fairly well in sync. We would have had a lot to compare this year!
I don’t mean to be maudlin; I long ago did my grieving. Plus, I still have too many things to do, including burning the rest of my sabbatical, and getting some papers finished. However, I am reminded that the friends and families of those dear friends set up memorials for them. Rather than having spent the money attending this year's RSAC, I wish I had put those funds into these worthwhile causes, to which I normally contribute each year.
If you remember any of them, below are reminders of how you can do some good in their memories, and maybe help bring a little springlike cheer to others. And if you don’t remember them, maybe you should investigate a little — too many people working in cyber security have no grasp of the rich history of the field.
BTW, and on another topic entirely, I hope to see some of you at the 20th annual CERIAS Symposium in early April. It’s a great transition into spring, and a wonderful celebration of education and research. As the emeritus director, I don’t have anything to do this year other than mingle and enjoy the presentations. That’s some change after 20 years! Please consider mingling along with me, and enjoying the hospitality of the great group at CERIAS!
If you want to make a donation in his memory, please send it to one or more of:
If you wish to make a donation in the memory of Howard Schmidt, send it to:
Brain Tumor Research Program
℅ Dr. Connelly
9200 W. Wisconsin Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53226
ACSA's top scholarship in the Scholarship for Women Studying Information Security (SWSIS.org) has been renamed as the Rebecca Gurley Bace Scholarship. Contributions to help support this scholarship are welcomed by sending a check (sorry, no online contributions) to:
Applied Computer Security Associates, Inc
2906 Covington Road
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Checks should be made payable to Applied Computer Security Associates, and note SWSIS Rebecca Gurley Bace Scholarship on the memo line.
KenKen's family has indicated that memorial contributions may be given to the American Heart Association.
The ISSA Foundation has a scholarship fund in Gene's honor. Donate to:
E, Eugene Schultz Scholarship Fund
c/o Steve Haydostian
18770 Maplewood Lane
Porter Ranch, CA 91326
All of the above are non-profit, charitable organizations, and your contributions will likely be tax-deductible, depending on your tax circumstances.