An expert panel discussed how the upcoming 2020 Presidential Election challenges our ideas around national security, campaign management, and personal data, as part of the annual Frank J. Fahrenkopf & and Charles T. Manatt Lecture series. The election integrity discussion was part of an evening of celebration hosted by the Graduate School of Political Management (GSPM), which also honored alumni awardees.
The celebration, one of GSPM's largest events of the year, drew a crowd to D.C. in late October. The evening kicked off with a networking reception, followed by the presentation of the 2019 GSPM Alumni Achievement Awards. Christopher J. Deering, CPS interim dean, presented certificates to the winners. They were selected by a committee of GSPM faculty and administrators for their career accomplishments and contributions to their communities, GSPM, and GW.
This year’s 2019 GSPM Alumni Achievement Award winners were:
- Jennifer Giglio, GSPM ‘03, Vice President of Communications, Washington Nationals
- Rohini Kosoglu, GSPM ‘08, Chief of Staff, U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D, CA)
- Megan Whittemore, CCAS ‘08, GSPM ‘10, Chief of Staff, U.S. Senator David Perdue (R, GA)
2019 GSPM Alumni Achievement Award recipient, Rohini Kosoglu, GSPM ‘08, Chief of Staff, U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (D, CA) with CPS Dean Deering (Abby Greenawalt Photography).
2019 GSPM Alumni Achievement Award recipient, Megan Whittemore, CCAS ‘08, GSPM ‘10, Chief of Staff, U.S. Senator David Perdue (R, GA), with CPS Dean Deering (Abby Greenawalt Photography).
This year’s lecture included three panelists:
- Mitt Romney’s former campaign manager and political consultant, Matt Rhoades, GSPM ’99;
- Jude Meche, Chief Information Security Officer, Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee; and
- Mauricio Moura, GSPM, MPS '14, CEO and Founder, IDEIA Big Data.
The discussion was moderated by Dr. Monique Chouraeshkenazi, Chairwoman of the National Security Program at the Daniel Morgan Graduate School of National Security and GSPM adjunct professor.
Panelists from left to right: Mauricio Moura, Jude Meche, Matt Rhoades, and moderator Dr. Monique Chouraeshkenazi, with Christopher J. Deering, CPS interim dean (Abby Greenawalt Photography).
The expert panel emphasized the importance of securing campaign and election infrastructure against external threats. Many campaigns are ill-equipped to counter a cyberattack, they said, and the best way to avoid falling victim is to be informed, proactive, and prepared. Rhoades warned that multiple countries and non-state actors will attempt to interfere with our elections in 2020 and beyond, with Meche adding that cyberattacks will continue to happen because they’re cheap and effective. Dr. Moura, a native of Brazil, pointed out that many other countries are also the targets of election interference and that rapidly evolving technology will only make it more difficult to detect and defeat these attacks.
This event is part of an endowed lecture series, made possible by the generosity of donors Charles Manatt, LAW ‘62, HON ‘08 and Frank Fahrenkopf. The purpose of this endowed lecture series is to help advance dialog around civil service and U.S. politics within the GW community.