SHOW REPORT – GovSec – FOSE 2103
By James Welch, Intelligence Analyst and lecturer on counterterrorism
The annual national conference, held in May, labelled as the, ‘Premier Event for Government, Homeland Security and Law enforcement,’ FOSE 2103, opened its doors at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, in Washington DC, May 14th to the 16th and certainly lived up to its well-earned reputation. This show combines manufacturers, and producers on both sides of the tactical/technical equation of national security. There were some very remarkable keynote speakers, including General Stanley McChrystal and football great Joe Theismann, these were but two of the significant and important keynote speakers included, a lecture by Steven VanRoekel, US Chief Information Officer (OMB), Senator Tom Carper spoke of ‘Getting Better Results by Building a 21st Century Government,’ while Daniel Burris broached the topic of ‘The Future of Government’ which revolved around enhanced technology enabling to do more with less. The “more with less,” theme was often echoed in this period of sequestration and a 3 member panel discussion addressed this the topic with a presentation entitled Doing More with Less; a special presentation by renowned author Lt. Colonel Dave Grossman, was an added bonus as were a multitude of specialized lectures and multiple workshops open to the public. Finally, there was also an opportunity for those interested in attending the numerous and interesting seminars, to obtain continuing education units (CEUs) to advance their academic careers. In short, there was something of interest for everyone concerned.
The event was organized by 1105 Media and the conference was broken into two sections including FOSE which covers technology and the government community, aspects of cybersecurity; project, records and information management; cloud computing and virtualization; and the second section, GovSec, which includes: Trexpo (the law enforcement expo) and CPM East, which is involved with disaster recover management (continuity, response and recovery) and cyber security as well. This ‘security salad,’ presents the best combination of intellectual technical and tactical response and recovery solutions available in a single venue. The event was aimed at both the public and private sectors.
The show was broken into several distinct segments. There were the well-known keynote speakers which drew large and eager audiences anxious to hear these addresses. There was also a large and well-presented commercial section with everything from private security solutions and disaster recovery plans and equipment, to governmental agencies such as the State Department’s Diplomatic Security Training Center, the Environmental Protection Agency (water security division) and the Defense Logistics Agency. Several universities were also present to answer questions, provide information and present their respective institutions. There were workshop sections open to the public for free education as well as several specialized professional paid seminars.
As a volunteer assistant, at the event, under the direction of the amazingly competent Deborah Lovell, I had the unique opportunity to participate in the various seminars, personally meet and greet keynote speakers, and to visit and speak with the exhibitors at the numerous interesting stands and booths. The FOSE guide listed 167 exhibitors to the event, while GovSec edition presented 182. This total, number of 349 exhibitors, were spread among the two large exhibit halls of the conference center. The conference center is massive and spread out over a very large area.
While the entire conference was extremely interesting there were several personal highlights which stood out in my mind. The address by General Stanley McChrystal, The State of International Affairs and the Security Challenges Facing America, was inspiring and marked many of the attendees. General McChrystal s