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Women In AppSec

Revision as of 09:10, 24 June 2017 by Bil Corry (talk | contribs) (finalized candidate list)

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Women in Application Security Committee

The purpose of Women in AppSec (WIA) Committee is to develop leadership, promote active membership and participation, and contributions by women in application security professional communities, globally and locally.

The Women in AppSec program is for anyone who believes that diversity is important to the success of the organization, as well as for women looking to learn more about AppSec or who want to make career connections with like-minded colleagues. This includes female undergraduate and graduate students, instructors, and professionals who are dedicated to information security or application development.

Email List

WIA List and Archive



Slack Channel

WIA Slack Channel

You can get an OWASP Slack invite here: OWASP Slack Invite


The purpose of Women in AppSec (WIA) Committee is to develop leadership, promote active membership and participation, and contributions by women in application security professional communities, globally and locally.


The scope for OWASP WIA Committee falls into the following areas:

  1. Attract women to OWASP, as active members, contributors and leaders.
  2. Offer opportunities for women to become engaged in AppSec and related professional communities.
  3. Provide inclusive targeted application security programs for all women learners.
  4. Provide inclusive training and mentorship for all interested OWASP women.
  5. Provide financial support to OWASP women members through scholarships, sponsorships, and grant making.
  6. Pursue fundraising, advancement and development to secure financial support for OWASP WIA activities..
  7. Integrate WIA track and related activities into OWASP events at all levels.
  8. Cultivate women for community leadership, speakers for conferences, thought leadership, learning leaders, and local chapter events.
  9. Collaborate with other committees and initiatives as needs present.
  10. Collaborate with local OWASP Chapters and Global OWASP leadership, including but not limited to offering advisory support to local and global OWASP leadership for WIA advancement and collaboratively building pro-WIA OWASP communities.
  11. Develop other special projects and events designed to further the purpose of WIA.

Membership Types


Voting Members are members of OWASP who have formally joined the WIA Committee. Voting Members are allowed to vote on Committee business and are allowed to serve in one of the five officer positions of the Committee.

In order to become a Voting Member, you must first become a Participating Member and participate for three months, become an OWASP member in good standing, and obtain a written endorsement from a current Voting Member or an OWASP Board of Director. Once all three criteria are met, you must formally request to join as a Voting Member to the WIA List. The Voting Members then vote via the WIA list, and if you receive a majority affirmative vote, you are then made a Voting Member.

Voting Members have an obligation to maintain participation and to reaffirm their commitment every six months (the Secretary will send an email every six months to affirm commitment, replying "no" or not replying will result in removal).


Participating Members are anyone that is interested in volunteering time to the WIA Committee or sub-committees. Participating Members are able to participate in all activities, with the exception of voting and serving in one of the five Committee officer roles.

In order to become a Participating member, you must express your volunteering commitment to the Secretary, who will then add you to the Membership List. Participating Members can withdraw their commitment at any time by notifying the Secretary. Participating Members do not need to be OWASP members.

Membership List

Membership List

Operating Model

WIA is a formal Committee of OWASP. WIA is governed by the rules set forth in the OWASP Committees 2.0 Operational Model.

Committee Officers

  1. Chair
    1. TBD for 2017 Term
    2. Duties
      1. Open/run the meetings
      2. Put items to vote and announce the result
      3. Oversee progress of committee activities
      4. Participates in fundraising activities/sponsorship acquisition
  2. Vice-Chair
    1. TBD for 2017 Term
    2. Duties
      1. Serve in place of the chair when the chair is not available, temporarily or permanently
      2. Confirm and validate results of votes
      3. Help the chair oversee progress of committee activities
      4. Participates in fundraising activities/sponsorship acquisition
      5. Run doodles for upcoming meetings
      6. Send out meeting invites
  3. Secretary
    1. TBD for 2017 Term
    2. Duties
      1. Maintain the WIA membership list and associated bookkeeping
      2. Take attendance/minutes at meetings
      3. Create an agenda for each meeting, put out a call to members for agenda items
      4. Post agendas and meetings
      5. Edit/update committee Wiki page
  4. Treasurer
    1. TBD for 2017 Term
    2. Duties
      1. Maintain budget
      2. Track income and expenses for all committee activities
      3. Report at each meeting the expenditures and incoming revenue for the month and the balance of the fund
      4. Check the balance of the WIA budget with the OWASP accountant quarterly
      5. Participates in fundraising activities/sponsorship acquisition

Note: Only Voting Members may serve as Committee Officers

Sub-Committee Coordinators

  1. Volunteer Coordinator
    1. TBD for 2017 Term
    2. Duties
      1. Recruit new members for WIA/volunteers for specific events
      2. Schedule/train volunteers as needed
      3. Provides direction and coordination for volunteers
      4. Plan for retention and replacement
      5. Support in fundraising activities/sponsorship acquisition
      6. Connect with other local active groups in security to create volunteer networking
      7. Maintain lessons learned in the volunteer recruiting for the different events to improve the recruiting process
      8. Keep informal/formal contacts with all the volunteer to be able to reach them in case of new needs
  2. Media Relations Coordinator
    1. TBD for 2017 Term
    2. Duties
      1. Maintain list of media contacts
      2. Maintain list of media articles mentioning WIA
      3. Promote WIA to media
      4. Prepare talking points, messaging strategy
      5. Work with OWASP Global to issue press releases

Note: All Committee Members may serve as Sub-Committee Coordinators


  • June 23, 2017 (Friday) - Call for Candidates closes
  • June 24, 2017 (Saturday) - Election emails send to voting members
  • July 2, 2017 (Sunday) - Election closes
  • July 3, 2017 (Monday) - Election results announced on WIA list


Committee Officers

Positions can only be filled by Voting Members.


  • Tanya Janca

Vice Chair

  • Loredana Mancini
  • Cathy Hall


  • Cathy Hall


  • Cathy Hall

Sub-Committee Coordinators

Positions can be filled by Voting and Participating Members.

Volunteer Coordinator - India

  • Vandana Verma

Volunteer Coordinator - Europe

  • Loredana Mancini

Volunteer Coordinator - North America

  • Wendy Istvanick

Media Relations Coordinator

  • Katherine Cancelado

AppSec EU 2017

Women in AppSec is kicking it up a notch at AppSec EU 2017 and we want YOU to join us! Make sure you stop by during the week to check out our events and to learn more about the group.

Events are free to attend and do not require a conference ticket.

Monday, May 8, 2017 6:00-9:00 pm Networking Session

On Monday 8th May at 6:00 pm in the Waterfront Conference Centre, we will have a group of mentors each give a brief talk about their experience followed by an "unconference" event. During the "unconference" event, we will break into groups to discuss popular technical topics. This will be a fantastic opportunity to engage in mentoring relationships and hear from women in the field. You can sign up for this free event on here:

Thursday, May 11, 2017 7:30-8:45 a.m. Mentoring Breakfast

Join us at our pre-conference WiA breakfast in the Waterfront Conference Centre at 7.30 am on Thursday 11th May. A light breakfast will be provided for table discussions on various topics. This will also be a second opportunity to chat with anyone you didn't get to during the Monday evening event. Details to register for this event will be available soon, it will also be free to attend.

Wondering what to expect?

Organisers Michelle and Claire discuss what you can expect here:

Interested in being a Mentor?

We’re looking for mentors to participate in both events. Both men and women are invited to contribute as mentors. This is the commitment we’re asking for:

  • A picture and bio for the website
  • A time commitment of two hours between the two events
    • 30+ minutes at the networking event
    • 1½ hours at the mentoring breakfast

Let us know if you’re interested in joining us!

Not sure if you’re interested yet? Provide your email address for updates as they become available.

We look forward to seeing you at AppSec EU 2017!

Meet the EU WIA planning team

  • === Michelle Simpson === Security Consultant at NCC Group
  • === Claire Burn === Field Applications Engineer at Titan-IC
  • === Cathy Hall === Principal Consultant at Sila Solutions Group
  • === Owen Pendelbury === Manager Cyber Risk Services - Penetration Testing @ Deloitte
  • === Zoe Braiterman === Business Studies graduate from Drew University
  • === Wendy Istvanick === Object Tactician at ThoughtWorks
  • === Fiona Collins === IT Security Engineer, Staff at Qualcomm
  • === Bev Corwin === Director of Technology at DDC
  • === Loredana Mancini === Chief Operation Officer at ITWAY
  • === Emily Verwee === Online Project Manager at The Arc of the United States
  • === Tiffany Long === Community Manager at OWASP

AppSec USA 2015

AppSec USA 2015
The Women in AppSec (WIA) program is for all OWASP members who believe that diversity is important to the success of an organization, as well as for women who want to make career connections with like-minded colleagues. We encourage you to attend our session on Thursday at 3:30pm in Room F, featuring the founders of InfoSec Girls, Apoorva Giri and Shruthi Kamath.

We also invite you to join us for our networking and “Birds of a Feather” sessions on on Thursday in WIA meeting room . Stop by anytime between 10:00am and 3:30pm to meet other members and learn more about the WIA program. You can also suggest a discussion topic on the sign-up at the room entrance.

Sponsorship opportunities for commercial organizations and OWASP chapters are also available.

AppSec USA 2015
Currently, there is an effort to plan activities for AppSec USA 2015. Volunteers are eagerly sought to support the program at AppSec USA! We are especially excited to invite the founders of the InfoSec Girls initiative to the AppSec USA 2015 conference. To bring InfoSec Girls to AppSec USA, we need to raise $7500. We are very close to our goal and know that with the support of the OWASP community, we can easily get there! Donations above and beyond our goal will be used for future WIA programs around the world.

Donate now:

AppSec EU 2015

During AppSec EU there was a panel discussion and workshop supported by the Women in AppSec initiative. Through these sessions we hoped to encourage women to pursue a career in AppSec and help them realize it is an option for them. These sessions was be open to all so we can help build support for the women around us. Learn more here:

Panel: "Women in AppSec - Making it Happen"
During this panel session we discussed what can be done to Make it Happen for Women in AppSec going forward. What have those currently working in the field done to Make it Happen for themselves and other women; what tips and advice do they have to help you do to make a career for yourself or encourage those around you (sister, friend, daughter, etc…) to pursue a career in AppSec? What can we as professionals can do to help encourage girls to go for a career in AppSec?

During the workshop we introduced female attendees of the conference to what a career in App Sec can involve. We discussed application security and the many career paths available. We hope to build relationships that may lead to a mentoring program for these women.

AppSec USA 2013

Learn more about the program here:

Previous Women in AppSec Winners

Following their experience at AppSec, winners are encouraged to write a short piece about their experience at the conference and their participation in the Women in AppSec program. Here, they outline their experience with the Women in AppSec Program in their own words.

Carrie Schaper, 2013 Winner

Carrie Schaper Small.jpg "OWASP Appsec proved to be a great experience for me, uniting and interacting with friends, professionals, and colleagues from the Information Security space from across the US and Internationally whom were in attendance. The huge space and well organized functions such as the: trainings, expert talks, panels, bug-bounty, lock-picking village and social events all enhanced the conference experience. Participating on the Women in IT panel was a wonderful experience, as many women were in attendance and participated in collaborative discussions. OWASP Appsec held in NY this year, was a premier NY conference not to be missed. Thank you to OWASP, its attendees and organizers."

Nancy Lornston, 2013 Winner

Nancy Lorntson Small.jpg "AppSec 2013 was an awesome experience! Nowhere in the world can you find the top security experts all in one place at one time (and participate in a marriage proposal!). The conference presentations were well organized and the speakers were prepared to share pros, cons, successes and failures of their work in order to advance the application security domain. The variety of vendors was terrific as well.

The Women in AppSec panel was an opportunity to advance women's position in the community. Each speaker shared some very candid remarks about their personal experiences and by the end, it was clear that while more work needs to be done, there is a sincere interest by companies, universities and the industry in general to work on doing the things needed to attract more women to the profession.

The training course I attended (Open source tools) lived up to it's billing and I came away with several invaluable tips and strategies to improve our program.

A huge thank you to the Women in App Sec Panel and OWASP in general for this opportunity to attend the premier Application Security Conference in the world."

Tara Wilson, 2011 Winner

Tara wilson.jpg “Being fortunate enough to receive the Women in AppSec sponsorhsip is a unique and valuable experience. It is a great opportunity for women to have a chance to bolster their skills and dive deep into the world of application security. I found that attending the conference was not only a great way to experience what the OWASP community has to offer, but it also gives students a chance to network with a great group of people who are passionate about their field and willing to share a wealth of information.”

Chandni Bhowmik, 2011 Winner

Chandni bhowmik.jpg Chandni Bhowmik is currently completing an M.S. in Computer Security and Information Assurance at the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT). Her first introduction to OWASP was through the project WebScarab during an application security lab last spring at RIT and her interest in OWASP grew ever since. Over the summer, she started programming open source web applications using built-in security features of Django and Python. She is interested in becoming an information security researcher, and hopes to leverage learning at OWASP AppSec USA 2011 in ad-hoc architecture, mobile platforms and over-all concepts of web application security. Besides secure programming, Chandni enjoys her current research involving digital image forensics and machine learning. In addition to attending school, she has interned in IT security and compliance at Paychex, a Rochester based payroll processing company, and gained industrial experience working an assistant systems engineer for Tata Consultancy Services, a global IT firm.