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Washington State Pulls from Media Industry for Newest CISO

Ralph Johnson returns to the Pacific Northwest after leading information security operations for NantMedia Holdings, which owns The Los Angeles Times and The San Diego Union-Tribune. Johnson also served as CISO for King County, Wash.

The state of Washington has turned to the newspaper and media industry for its newest chief information security officer.

Ralph Johnson has been named as the next CISO for Washington Technology Solutions (WaTech). He begins in the new role Dec. 1.

Johnson currently leads the information security program for NantMedia Holdings LLC, which owns The Los Angeles Times and The San Diego Union-Tribune, according to a WaTech press release.
Washington CISO Ralph Johnson
“I’ve worked with Ralph for many years and believe his skills, experience and information security knowledge will continue to improve our enterprise security program and safeguard the state’s data,” said state CIO and WaTech Director Bill Kehoe, in a statement.

Kehoe has been serving as acting CISO since the departure of Vinod Brahmapuram in March. Brahmapuram, who spent nearly two-and-a-half years at WaTech, is now the senior director for security at Lumen Technologies, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Prior to his work with NantMedia, Johnson served as CISO for Los Angeles County from 2018 to 2021, as well as CISO for King County, Wash., from 2005 to 2018. Johnson is also an instructor with the University of Washington’s Information Security and Risk Management Continuum Program.