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Kansas CISO Rod Blunt Relocates to El Paso County, Texas

The man who spearheaded legislation to formally structure Kansas’ IT security has moved on to county-level government. His successor is a member of the state’s IT security council, Jeff Maxon.

El Paso
After nearly 16 years working for the state of Kansas and formalizing its cybersecurity strategy, Rod Blunt stepped down as chief information security officer in June and moved south to take on that role for El Paso County, Texas.

According to his LinkedIn profile, Blunt developed the state’s cybersecurity strategy and spearheaded the Kansas Cybersecurity Act, adopted in 2018, which created and administered the Kansas Information Security Office, formally established the CISO role and required that agencies have their own heads of security. In a statement before the Joint Committee on Kansas Security in December 2018, Blunt advocated for cybersecurity training, vulnerability scanning and collecting and storing security logs. As CISO, Blunt oversaw the state’s managed security services program that handled network security for 60 state agencies, and his staff cybersecurity training reduced the “phishing” click rate from 23 percent to 8 percent.

In May 2019, the state’s chief information technology officer at the time, Lee Allen, told Government Technology that Blunt was a “tremendous CISO and a long-time asset to the state” and its security office.

The state website says the Kansas Information Security Office named Blunt’s successor as CISO this month: Jeff Maxon, a state employee for more than 10 years who serves on the state’s Information Technology Security Council and works on cyberoperations for the Kansas Air National Guard. According to the website, he has a master’s degree in information assurance and cybersecurity from Capella University, and a bachelor’s in computer information science from Washburn University.