From protecting sensitive financial data to serving his country, Ryan Field has dedicated his career to cybersecurity, leading innovative programs to secure systems and develop the next generation of experts in the field.

Ryan Field was hired into the security field straight out of college, working at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) in IT Security assessments, including penetration testing. This inspired Field to pursue his master’s, wanting to learn more about cybersecurity. After attending Harvard, Field continued to serve PwC as in the Advisory Services Practice of IT Strategy and Security.

After several years in Boston, Field and his wife returned home to Hawaii to start their family. Once settled, Field started working for a Department of Defense contractor where he led projects to build data centers and other large-scale system implementation before making his way back to financial services.

“I was really lucky to have strong teachers and mentors that allowed me to bring a wealth of experience home to Hawaii to be shared through incredible job opportunities,” Field says.

While working, Field continues to build additional relationships within his community.

“In Hawaii, our IT and Cyber communities are very close and work well together across sectors. We all support each other and collaborate on critical issues and threats.” Field says. Those relationships helped Field grow as a professional, rising into leadership positions.

Field is currently the Chief Information Security Officer at Bank of Hawaii, a position he started in 2021. One of his responsibilities involves developing and growing the vendor risk program.

“It continues to be a key risk area of focus for the bank. What we’re trying to do is make sure that we are continuing to mature, especially when it comes to cyber risk,” Field says. Field’s responsibilities also include IT governance, risk and compliance — essential programs when handling sensitive information.

Field thrives within these programs, having previously built security programs from the ground up for clients and companies.

“In a previous role, we had the opportunity to re-design the security operations center almost completely. I was really fortunate to find the strongest teammates and experts to join the team. That program took us about a year to build. We tested it ourselves and brought in top-tier penetration testers to validate. We also received unwavering support from the board and our executive team,” Field says.

Additionally, Field served in the Navy Reserve. Field participated in a direct commissioned officer program, which was designed to hire private sector individuals with specialized skillsets. The program included cyber professionals, nurses and doctors, along with other experts in their fields.

“I was most humbled to work for some of the most highly skilled and motivational leaders, many with impressive backgrounds from both the military and commercial sectors. For example, both of the last leaders I worked for also serve as senior executives in Fortune 100 companies in their civilian occupations. ” Field says.

Field spent a few years as an adjunct professor at Hawaii Pacific University, where he taught master’s-level courses in cybersecurity. The courses focused on teaching the basics, preparing students for the certified information systems security professional (CISSP) certification exam.

A lot of Field’s passion lies in community work, such as working with CyberHawaii, a subsidiary of Cyber USA.. The nonprofit focuses on workforce development and intelligence sharing across a variety of sectors within the community, especially small and medium-sized businesses. The organization works with local universities and government organizations and builds cross functional partnerships With the goal of building generational skills, providing resources for both students and working professionals.

“The coolest part about it is that because Hawaii is such a micro-economy of its own, our federal, state and local partners are all extremely collaborative. We have a strong community that’s very unique. Because of the military presence here, there’s also a lot of crossover with those in the Reserves or the National Guard in conjunction with their full-time jobs,” Field says.

Field is especially proud of the work done with students, particularly around workforce development and mentorship.“ A lot of the work that we’re doing is really fruitful; it seems to be appreciated by a lot of the students. I am very proud of our ability to not only mentor the next generation, but in some cases, inspire them to pursue this shared passion.” Field says.