Welcome Letter

Welcome Letter

Reneaué Railton

Dear Participants,

As the Program Chair, it is my pleasure to welcome you to the 20th Annual FIRST Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia.

This is a landmark event, as we will be celebrating the 20th Anniversary of FIRST and honoring former chairs of the organization. This year's conference will draw attendance from leading incident and vulnerability handling professionals from all over the world. Speakers representing industry, government policy makers, as well as academic scholars and researchers from the information security arena will present and discuss global security concerns in the 21st Century. The focus will be on strategies and tools to strengthen our global partnerships and information exchange in the realm of IT Security.

The 2008 conference program builds upon the program format introduced in Seville, Spain in 2007. We will deliver a program consisting of Technical and Business Tracks delivered in parallel, along with the Hands-on Tutorials and Geek Zones for those wanting advanced technical discussion. This Conference pledges to deliver current and relevant technical information for IT security professionals. It also provides opportunities for CIOs, CEOs, industry leaders, managers, academics, and government officials to exchange ideas on technology trends and best practices.

We have a great line-up of keynote speakers including:

  • Scott Charney, Corporate Vice President, Trustworthy Computing, Microsoft, US
  • J. D. Fraser, CEO of UserFriendly.Org
  • John Stewart, SVP CSPO, Cisco, Inc.
  • William Cook, Partner, Wildman, Harrold, Allen & Dixon LLP
  • Ivan Krstić, Software architect and researcher

This week-long conference is an excellent opportunity for you to meet with FIRST members from all over the world, share the view of Incident Response Teams, and create an opportunity for networking, collaboration, sharing of technical information and the building of trust relationships internationally. As always, we extend a warm welcome to all our colleagues in the industry who share our interest in improving information protection.

The beautiful city of Vancouver provides the setting of 20th Anniversary event. We are fortunate that coinciding with the FIRST conference, there are several local events to add fun and flavor to your trip. Highlights include "Bard-B-Q and Fireworks" (a Shakespearean play and BBQ followed by Celebration of Light fireworks - July 23, 26 and 30) and the Vancouver International Jazz Fest. The annual banquet will add real flavor to the event, as we will be sampling some of the best the region has to offer in wines and brews in a preceding reception. The venue is the luxurious Pan Pacific Hotel Crystal Pavilion. In addition to fine wines, they will offer local artisan and International cheeses, breads and biscuits. Tour & travel material will be displayed to give attendees a better understanding of the wine region in British Columbia. The banquet, itself, will feature a Wine Pairing Event with a local wine expert, Harry McWatters, introducing each wine and explaining the tastes/pairing and the Okanagan region as a whole.

I am looking forward to meeting you all in Vancouver in June at what promises to be a most stimulating and enjoyable event!

Reneaué Railton's signature
Reneaué Railton
2008 FIRST Conference Program Committee Chair