Melissa Spicer is a Sr. Manager for Evergy, leading the Information Security Operations and Identity and Access Management teams. Melissa has managed various teams for 20 years. Melissa started her career in Finance and began her security journey in 2006. Melissa has since managed all domains within Information Security, along with a Physical Security Operations Center. Melissa holds the CISM certification. Melissa is a dynamic leader with a passion for security and developing people.
Melissa is a founding board member of Women in Security – KC, where she held the Treasurer position from inception through 2018. Melissa set up the initial requirements to obtain the Articles of Incorporation and the 501c3 - Nonprofit status for the organization. Melissa then started the fundraising committee to obtain funds and create processes to award scholarships.
Encouraging women to grow their knowledge and skills in the Information Security industry is what drove Melissa to help develop this organization. Melissa is proud of all of the successes that WiS-KC has celebrated in such a short time. Melissa is excited to have the opportunity to obtain a board position again and further develop the services that WiS-KC provides our community.
Maria Singh is a Cybersecurity Engineer at T-Mobile. She has a passion and a desire to see young women empowered, encouraged, and challenged to become the best version of themselves by appropriating all the educational and mentoring resources currently available. One such amazing resource is the professional non-profit organization, Women in Securit. She believes that having equal access to high-quality education is the equalizer that spans race or gender. During her time as Vice President, Maria is hoping to provide a chance to pursue and help equip the many young women in our community to look forward to a bright future.
Additionally, Maria has a rich experience in volunteer endeavors as a Couch and Mentor of many Kansas City organizations such as FIRST robotics, STEM Alliance, Minddrive, and Cyber Patriots. During Maria's time as VP of WIS-KC, she hopes to use her experience and partner relationships to build upon what has been achieved.
"Chance or Fortune Favors the Prepared Mind"- Louis Pasteur, French Microbiologist/Chemist: Maria's favorite quote.
Kristen Cotten recently changed her career and is new to the field. She was a former professional skydiving instructor for a decade before deciding to pivot into IT. Within the last two years, Kristen completed a second bachelor's degree in IT, obtained several industry-relevant certifications, and landed her first role in the field as a DoD Civilian. Anyone who meets her will quickly recognize her passion, excitement, and thirst for knowledge.
Kristen is excited for her opportunity as WIS-KC Secretary because she previously struggled with a loss of identity and sense of community when she first approached the industry. STEM career fields were not encouraged when she was younger, and even today she has noticed unique challenges within the workplace. Kristen seeks to help inspire other women by showing them there is a place for them in the infosec community. Kristen would be honored to give back to the community.
Naomi Hill currently holds the position as a Security Engineer on the Information Security team at H&R Block. She joined the H&R Block Cloud Security Resiliency Engineering team (CSRE) in May 2019. Naomi's role focuses on continuous improvement in support, automation, and integration of enterprise solutions to various platforms that are used at Block. That includes eliminating toil, managing risks, and handling failures/outages. Naomi obtained a bachelor's in Business Management from the local university, UMKC, at the business's Bloch school. While in college, Naomi was involved in several organizations as well as being a Henry Block Scholar. She was also the president of the Ambassadors program in college, which gave her exposure to many areas of the organization.
As Treasurer of WIS-KC, Naomi is willing to accept challenges. She is responsible, edited, and ambitious. Naomi has been a consistent and participating member of WIS-KC for some time.
"Always think positive"- Naomi Hill.
Piper Williams is currently an Application Security Engineer at H&R Block. Piper graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a degree in Information Technology Engineering, where she spent 8 semesters on the Dean's Honor roll list. Post-graduation, Piper spent two years as a Software Developer. This led to her promotion as Lead Dev at an unusually young age. With an insatiable urge to continue learning, Piper decided to pivot her career path into INFOSEC in August of 2019. Her primary career goal is to educated developers in elevating their craft from development to secure development.
WIS-KC made an enormous impact on Piper's life by funding her SANS GIAC (GWAPT) certification. Piper hopes to extend the same kindness, hope, confidence, passion, and happiness that WIS-KC has shown her to another during her time as Communications Chair.
"It is not often that we are granted the opportunity to assist another in attaining their goals, and I feel strongly that I need to reach out to their women, potentially inspiring her to reach for her dreams as others did for me." - Piper Williams.
Leys Curley is a proven leader with over 15 years of experience at Cerner as the Manager of the Identity and Access Operations team within the Enterprise Security Organization. Leys leads a large scale Identity and Access Management program at Cerner that covers 35,000 associates, contingent workers and partners in both commercial and federal spaces in 26 countries.
Leys’ specialties include IAM, PAM, Role-based access controls(RBAC), Operation and Program Management. Leys has a caring, energetic style as a leader and truly believes in building and developing skills in others while sharing her passion for security. Leys is a founding board member of Women in Security – KC, where she held the Event coordinator position from inception until 2017.
Leys serves on the Outreach committee, where she initiated and lead the initial partnership with the Boys and Girls Club-KC. Leys also serves and supports other groups within WiS-KC. Encouraging and supporting women as they begin and/or continue their journey in the Information Security industry has been important to Leys, which is why she helped develop and organize our chapter of WiS-KC. Leys is excited to have the opportunity to obtain a board position again as we continue our journey as Women in Security – KC.
Stacy is the CEO of an IT search firm specializing in the placement of security and infrastructure technical and management professionals. With over 19 years of experience in the industry, she has a passion for finding end to end staffing solutions for clients. Her dedication and commitment to her customers has helped bridge the gap between HR and IT management. She possesses a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Kansas and often attends Security related IT networking events in the Kansas City area.