Pre-conference: An eye toward the future days… and years

Sunday, Sept. 11 saw us start to welcome our conference participants, have some fun with those who arrived early, and make some plans – not just for the days, but also for the years ahead:

Our earliest event, the 8 a.m. golf tourney, had a successful 42-player turnout. Sally Vesley, marketing communications manager with tourney sponsor CRU-Dataport/WiebeTech, says it was one of the most fun workdays she has ever had. “They were great golfers,” she says. “We gave away four pairs of golf shoes, a golf cart, and of course USB write blockers.” The write blockers went to the top 3 winners:

  • Jim Keith, Closest to Pin
  • Terry Willis, Longest Drive (and winner of the whole tourney)
  • Brian Collins, part of the winning team

Vesley also says she’s planning another tourney for next year’s conference in Hershey, Pennsylvania.

At 11 a.m. registration opened to welcome our first conference participants. Many had arrived the night before or that morning, and lined up to get their badges and conference materials, including shirts and pins, our program, and free software.

Also at 11 a.m., the expo hall opened so that the vendors could set up their booths in advance of the Vendor Reception planned for the evening. Notable exhibits: Wireshark University‘s tropical tiki display (complete with network-devouring shark!), and Paraben’s crime-scene contest. Both sponsors are giving away free stuff: Paraben is making its Chat Examiner software available to participants, while Wireshark U. is providing one-year All Access Passes to its training!

At 1 p.m., chapter presidents (or board representatives) gathered for the International Board of Directors meeting. Among the items discussed there:

  • Membership, including student membership. We currently stand with 38 chapters and 17 student charters, 3,227 members and 214 student members. Our student members continue to be an outstanding addition to our organization, providing needed research and volunteer work to support our regular members.
  • Internet Safety for Children (ISFC). Shadi Hayden, of our Silicon Valley chapter, talked about the renewed interest in the ISFC, which had seen much success in the mid-2000s. Shadi has been working hard to recruit regional volunteers to help with website content and outreach to allied organizations like Internet Crimes Against Children (ICAC) task forces and the OJJDP, so that the ISFC can be a conduit of information between public and private sector investigators. This conduit will include an ISFC website “facelift,” which will allow us to share information both publicly and for member investigators only.
  • Strategic Planning & Communications. In July a Strategic Planning Committee came together to chart the HTCIA’s course over the next five years and beyond. The committee performed a SWOT analysis, determined its goals and strategic objectives, and came up with ideas needed to drive the HTCIA toward those objectives – including a new website, better training and education, and improved communications.
  • The Consortium of Digital Forensics Specialists. Incorporated this year as a way to consolidate the voice of the digital forensics profession, the CDFS asked the HTCIA to become a collective nonprofit member of this complementary (not competing) organization. Board members voted to join – we’ll be sure to update you on future developments as we support this newest organization!

Officers also took care of organization business, including votes on bylaw changes and on International Executive Committee members for the coming year. Joining incoming International President Ron Wilczynski (Northern California) will be: 1st Vice President Tom Quilty (Silicon Valley), 2nd Vice President Jimmy Garcia (Southern California), Secretary Peter Morin (Atlantic Canada), and Treasurer Jose Soltero (Southern California).

Finally, we wish to remember all our members who were affected ten years ago by the 9/11 terrorist attacks. From our New York City members who lost friends and family members – or responded – at the World Trade Center, to other members who committed quantities of time and energy to investigating terrorism, we keep you in our thoughts and our hearts. Your spirit is reflected in the words of our Northeast member Cynthia Hetherington, who was supposed to be aboard United 93:

View more of our photos from pre-conference events and setup at our Facebook page. Be sure to “like” our page while you’re there, so you can see the latest updates over the next few days!

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