LEAPS – Afternoon Keynote + Closing Panel

LEAPS – Afternoon Keynote + Closing Panel Transition remarks and…

August 17, 2022

LEAPS – Afternoon Keynote + Closing Panel

Transition remarks and closing keynote introduction were given by Jenna O’Steen with Accenture. Jenna voiced her honor in being at the event and thanked participants for their insightful dialogue around the various challenges being faced. She then introduced Tom Chittum, Acting Deputy Director of ATF, to give the afternoon keynote address.


In his presentation, Casings, Crumbs, and Cameras: Observations on Law Enforcement Technology, Chittum spoke to the ever-increasing expectations on law enforcement officers to do their jobs faster and with greater transparency in a previously unseen political climate. As Chittum interprets that, this has made it imperative to recruit a new generation into law enforcement that can rise to meet today’s challenges.


Among other skills, this new generation will have to be adept at analyzing the “crumbs.”


Nearly every activity now leaves behind digital “crumbs,” records of human activity, whether lawful—such as calling an Uber for a ride—or harmful, like when planning criminal activity. The challenge lies in making sense of the relationships between the crumbs, and what to do with them.


Examples of crumbs include:

  • Direct evidence (ex. social media)
  • Organizational evidence (ex. commercial reports)
  • Geographic (ex. Wi-fi)
  • Audio/video (ex. “always on” devices, such as Alexa or Google Home)


As useful as these various technologies are, Chittum stresses that they are merely tools. “It’s not the hammer that builds a house,” he says. “It’s the carpenter. The people are what make the difference. We must always be hiring and training talent, and ensuring the leadership is there to make sure they’re being used effectively. Together, we make this a more just and safer world.”


The closing panel, introduced by Jimmy English, Director of Federal Public Safety for Verizon, took on the topic of Accelerating the Mobile Workforce. Panelists included:


  • Billy Bob Brown – Executive Assistant Director (EAD) for Emergency Communications, CISA
  • Christine Finnelle – CTO, USMS
  • Kevin Cox – Deputy CIO, DOJ
  • Peter Alex – Supervisory IT Specialist – Enterprise Mobile Development, FBI


Moderated by Luke McCormack, Former CIO of the Department of Homeland Security, panelists discussed the challenges they face and the growth inspired by the COVID-19 pandemic. Participants shared success stories and discussed organizational hurdles agencies must overcome to fully empower a mobile workforce and establish an effective hybrid work environment.


Other topics discussed included:

  • Best practices for supporting the hybrid work environment
  • Technology advances that impact mobility and the hybrid workplace
  • Security and the mobile work environment
  • Mobile connections and the delivery of critical citizen information
  • Capacity, mobile connectivity, and provider choice


Panelists agreed that interoperability will be the key to moving forward.


“It really is about people working together and, more importantly, wanting to work together,” said Billy Bob Brown. “The more that we work together, the more able we are to defend against challenges. We defend today to defend tomorrow.”


Thought Leadership