TU selects inaugural executive director of Oklahoma Cyber Innovation Institute - The University of Tulsa
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TU selects inaugural executive director of Oklahoma Cyber Innovation Institute

U.S. Air Force Brig. Gen. Chad Raduege, who most recently served as chief information officer at U.S. European Command in Stuttgart, Germany, has been named the inaugural executive director of the Oklahoma Cyber Innovation Institute (OCII) at The University of Tulsa.

Photograph of Chad Raduege
Chad Raduege

The university announced Tuesday that Raduege is bringing his vast experience with technology, operations, and communications as well as his academic credentials in business administration and organizational management to lead the new OCII. The institute was created earlier this year through an initial $24 million investment, composed of Oklahoma American Rescue Plan Act funds and George Kaiser Family Foundation matching funds for workforce development, small business outreach, and lab-to-market technology innovation.

“The University of Tulsa conducted a national search for the right person to set the bar for OCII, and we were fortunate to attract candidates of Gen. Raduege’s caliber,” said TU President Brad R. Carson. “Chad’s background and skills are uniquely aligned to advance the university’s history as a world leader in cyber education and research for nearly 25 years.”

Oklahoma Cyber Innovation Institute focuses on developing, testing, and deploying cyber research outcomes and technology developments. The university is leveraging nationally recognized cyber scholars in academia and research, in addition to Tulsa’s dynamic business and innovation community, to meet the global demand for cyber talent and technology.

Before taking the role of CIO and director of command, control, communications, and computers/cyber with the U.S. Air Force in Europe, Raduege served as CIO for Air Combat Command in Hampton, Virginia. In this position, he was responsible for organizing, training, and equipping cyberspace capability to build, extend, operate, secure, and defend the Air Force portion of the Department of Defense global network.

Prior to that position, Raduege served as the commander of the White House Communications Agency in Washington, D.C., and the commander of the 690th Cyberspace Operations Group in San Antonio, Texas. He has also served in deployed missions to Bosnia, Iraq, and Kyrgyzstan and was a recovery team leader in the aftermath of the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing.

“After a fulfilling military career in service to our nation, I am honored and excited to join another distinguished team – The University of Tulsa – where I look forward to tackling another meaningful mission: the intersection of Oklahoma’s technical workforce development and Tulsa’s emerging technology ecosystem,” Raduege said. “Our Oklahoma Cyber Innovation Institute looks forward to helping shape our nation’s technological development, evolution, and future.”

TU was recently ranked in the top 25 schools for cybersecurity by U.S. News and World Report, tied with institutions like Harvard University. Now, OCII is attracting world-class scientists and engineers to work alongside TU’s renowned cyber faculty in the areas of digital transformation, critical infrastructure protection, autonomous systems and organizational security.

“Chad has organized critical missions, led hundreds of personnel and managed millions of dollars in budgets. He brings a wealth of experience to this new position and will provide strong direction for the OCII as the institute seeks to empower tomorrow’s cyber professionals to create technological innovations that address national security issues,” said Rose Gamble, vice president for research and economic development and professor of computer science.

For more than two decades, The University of Tulsa’s elite Cyber Corps program has led the way in training the experts who defend businesses and individuals in the United States from hackers, rogue states and serious national security threats. TU has Centers of Academic Excellence designations in Research and in Cyber Defense by the National Security Agency. TU has held CAE designation since 2000 and was one of the first 14 institutions awarded this distinction. Since 2008, the campus has been home to an elite National Computer Forensics Institute lab, a federally funded center dedicated to training law enforcement in cybercrime investigations.

“The University of Tulsa has a strong national reputation in cyber education, and we are excited to see the Oklahoma Cyber Innovation Institute expand the bridge between the academic, private, and public sectors,” said GKFF Executive Director Ken Levit. “Chad’s leadership will be key to making the most of those crucial connections.”

In 2021, TU launched the School of Cyber Studies to serve as an umbrella for the university’s growing cyber degree programs and to foster collaboration between multidisciplinary experts from science, business, law, policy and ethics. Professional certificates in cyber to advance the careers of workers interested in upskilling or reskilling are anticipated in the coming months as part of the Oklahoma Cyber Innovation Institute.

“TU is renowned for its cyber programs, and Chad has worked in the highest levels of national security and technology. He brings unparalleled real-world expertise from his days traveling with presidents, coordinating with NATO, and assisting the military with remote operations during the pandemic,” said Tyler Moore, chair of TU’s School of Cyber Studies.