Threats to Democracy and Normalization of Violent Extremism
ONLINE CONFERENCE EVENT
22 September, 2022 5PM Zoom Online Service
In 2016, a major concern was that foreign adversaries had grown adept at using social media to drive wedges between Americans and their democratic institutions. In 2022, foreign and domestic bad actors alike are not only creating a more divisive general public, but they are also exacerbating tensions to a point that a growing number of people view violence as an acceptable means to bring about necessary change in our "broken" democracy. Understanding the nature of dis-, mis-, and mal-information threats, as well as the mechanisms in place to grow resilience against these threats, is key to addressing, and hopefully reversing, the normalization of violent extremism in the U.S. We are fortunate to have Suzanne Spaulding with us to share her thoughts on these threats to democracy and the normalization of violent extremism.
Suzanne Spaulding is a senior adviser for homeland security and director of the Defending Democratic Institutions project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). She also serves as a member of the Cyberspace Solarium Commission. Previously, she served as undersecretary for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), where she led the National Protection and Programs Directorate, now called the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA), managing a $3 billion budget and a workforce of 18,000 that is charged with strengthening cybersecurity and protecting the nation’s critical infrastructure, including election infrastructure. Ms. Spaulding has worked in the executive branch in Republican and Democratic administrations and on both sides of the aisle in Congress. She was general counsel for the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence and minority staff director for the House of Representatives Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. She also spent six years at the Central Intelligence Agency, where she was assistant general counsel and the legal adviser to the director’s Nonproliferation Center. She was executive director of two congressionally created commissions, on weapons of mass destruction and on terrorism. Following the attacks of 9/11, Ms. Spaulding worked with key critical infrastructure sectors as they reviewed their security posture and advised the CEOs of the Business Roundtable. In 2002, she was appointed by Governor Mark Warner of Virginia to the Secure Commonwealth Panel to advise the governor and the legislature regarding preparedness issues. She was managing partner of the Harbour Group, a principal in the Bingham Consulting Group, and of counsel to Bingham McCutchen LLP. In addition to her work at CSIS, Ms. Spaulding currently serves on a number of corporate boards and advisory boards and is a member of the Homeland Security Experts Group (HSEG).
Online conference details will be shared with registered participants shortly before the event.