Industry Leaders Come Together to Aid Veterans in Entrepreneurship; Free Mentoring Program Helps Veterans Build Cybersecurity Businesses from the Ground Up
Denim Group, the leading secure software development company and the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce today announced the one year anniversary of the organizations’ unique San Antonio, Texas Cybersecurity Boot Camp specifically designed to assist talented veterans with navigating the challenges of entrepreneurship to start their own cybersecurity businesses. In its first year, the program has hosted more than 50 participants. One of those companies, Infocyte, received funding after their initial boot camp sessions.
Designed and funded by the Cybersecurity Committee of the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, the program’s classes are open to all transitioning military and government civilian employees with previous cybersecurity/information assurance expertise and are uniquely taught by former military officers who have already made a successful transition to the private sector. Boot camp sessions incorporate principles successfully modeled for years in countries like Israel, a nation widely credited for having the highest density of startups per capita in the world–one for every 1,844 citizens or two and a half times the U.S. rate.
“The Chamber is looking for those with military experience in cybersecurity because they are a natural fit to help fill the unmet and growing demand for cybersecurity work across the country,” said Henry Cisneros, Chairman of the Board of Directors, San Antonio Chamber of Commerce. “San Antonio has raised its profile as a hub when it comes to cybersecurity professionals and technologies. For many, it’s no surprise given the long-standing presence of Air Force cyber and intelligence missions in Texas, as many former Air Force ‘blue-suiters’ have transitioned from military service to start successful cybersecurity companies here.”
The Cybersecurity Boot Camp program, founded in 2014, is being spearheaded by former military officers that went on to build successful security companies; Denim Group’s John Dickson and Joe Krull (current Chair of the program), as well as Brad Morrison, founder and CEO of Innove LLC. Many of San Antonio’s most successful cyber defense companies over the years such as Wheelgroup, SecureLogix andSecureInfo Corporation, were launched by former military officers who were pioneers in the field of cybersecurity. The Cybersecurity Boot Camp is making a noticeable impact on veterans looking to start their own company. Chris Gerritz, CEO of Infocyte states “The Cybersecurity Boot Camp has helped me realize that I could build a successful cybersecurity company in San Antonio. It encouraged me because I got to interact with so many veterans who had come from the same background as mine and had become successful building their businesses after they got out of the military.”
“It’s an honor to be able to provide the mentorship, expertise and networking opportunities that enable these attendees to take advantage of the intense cyber knowledge they gained while defending our country,” said Krull. “We are giving these new vets the ‘inside scoop’ on specifically what it takes to transition their highly marketable cybersecurity skills into highly successful and profitable businesses that can have an enormous impact on today’s cyber threat landscape worldwide.”
The Cybersecurity Boot Camp was created to help these aspiring entrepreneurs test their business strategies, shape a business and financial model, learn how to tackle sales and marketing and find the right employees in order to succeed. The series of classes being offered at no charge equips entrepreneurial men and women who are completing their government service with the skills and knowledge to apply their cybersecurity skills towards accomplishments in the business world. Military personnel with entrepreneurial aspirations are welcome to contact Will Garrett at firstname.lastname@example.org or (210) 229-2163 for more information about joining the program.
About The San Antonio Chamber of Commerce
The San Antonio Chamber of Commerce has been propelling business success since 1894. As the largest business association in the region, the Chamber focuses on advocating on behalf of business at the local, state and federal level on pro-business legislation, collaborates with education institutions and organizations to build a stronger workforce for the future and provides a way for businesses of every size to build their network.
About Denim Group
Denim Group is the leading secure software development firm that is a trusted advisor to organizations on matters of software risk and security. The company builds secure software for the most security conscious organizations and helps others assess and mitigate risk of their existing software. Denim Group’s flagship ThreadFix product accelerates the process of software vulnerability remediation and reflects Denim Group’s deep understanding of what it takes to fix application vulnerabilities faster. Denim Group is a frequent contributor to the larger application security community, and has been involved with the Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP) since shortly after its inception. The company has been recognized as one of the 5,000 Fastest Growing Private Companies by Inc. Magazine five years in a row and has won multiple awards including its accolades as one of the best places to work in San Antonio. For more information about Denim Group visit www.denimgroup.com.