Tech Tonics: Dawn Meyerriecks – Bringing the Fail Fast Thinking of Silicon Valley to the CIA
In what might be one of the coolest government roles you could find, Dawn Meyerriecks job is to bring the latest and greatest science and technology to the Central Intelligence Agency –she gets to be a modern day Q in a world of data, drones and DNA.
Dawn’s path to technology and intrigue was anything but obvious in her early years when she aspired to be a pianist. But after an overly critical teacher told her that her playing was merely “adequate,” she made a left turn into engineering and never looked back.
Throughout her career Dawn has moved fluidly between the public and private sector, making stops at TRW and AOL; at the latter, she says, her job was putting the Internet on training wheels for people like her mom. In the end her “service gene” won out and Dawn made her way to her current position as Deputy Director of the CIA for Science and Technology, a role that most would seem more suited than one who looks like Harrison Ford than a master gardener.
Today Dawn dwells in a world of cybersecurity, bioterrorism, and artificial intelligence of all types in a quest to keep our country safe. She says, “Technology is ambivalent – it can be used for good or evil.”
It was such a pleasure to feature Dawn on Tech Tonics today, even though David and I know we are now being watched.
We are grateful to GE Ventures for sponsorship of today’s episode. GE Ventures – Multiple Paths to Big Impact.