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Dennis Schmidt takes helm of Security and reorganized division

In May 2018, Dennis Schmidt took the helm of the new reorganized division made up of Information Security, Privacy and Identity Management.






He became Assistant Vice Chancellor for the division and assumed the role and responsibilities of Chief Information Security Officer. Before managing this division, Dennis had served as Assistant Vice Chancellor for Infrastructure & Operations at ITS since September 2015.

ITS formed the new division by combining Identity Management, which moved over from Infrastructure & Operations; Privacy, which had been part of the Office of the CIO; and Information Security, which had been a stand-alone unit within ITS.

Schmidt is the right leader at the right time, as information security is more critical and challenging than ever before. He’s a former Navy pilot on the throttle of the response to information security at UNC-Chapel Hill as cyber criminals are increasingly sophisticated and organized. Schmidt also comes to the role of Chief Information Security Officer and leader of this new division with much pertinent experience and many valuable connections from his nearly two decades at the School of Medicine.

Dennis Schmidt

Dennis Schmidt

“During my 18 years at the School of Medicine, I laid the foundation for their information security program and formed close relationships with CISOs at UNC and UNC Health Care,” he said. “As the HIPAA Security Officer, I was also very involved with the HIPAA implementation and worked closely with privacy officers from both UNC and UNC Health Care. In those jobs, my focus was primarily with the School of Medicine needs. Now, in my new role, I have the opportunity to work with the entire campus, as well as with my peers from other UNC system schools — and I have a great team to help me do that.”

His team is made up of highly skilled professionals who are focused on advancing the University’s teaching, research and public service objectives by:

  • Identifying and addressing risks to the confidentiality, integrity and availability of UNC-Chapel Hill information and systems;
  • Providing security awareness training to help the Carolina community more safely navigate our cyber world;
  • Providing a stable and reliable means to identify users and provide appropriate access to University resources; and
  • Ensuring that appropriate policies and processes are in place to protect the privacy of our students, faculty, staff, patients, research subjects and other people who do business with the University.

“I think we are off to a good start,” Schmidt said. “Initially, I want to focus on developing strategic plans for user-awareness training and for endpoint security. We have had two off-site strategic planning sessions so far that were very productive. I look forward to gaining traction in those areas.”

Key Partner(s): All ITS units
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