2023 Rising Star: Zachary Nandapurkar

Technical account manager, Public Sector, Tanium

Courtesy: Zachary Nandapurkar

Zach Nandapurkar's interest in government was spurred by the book Citizenville: How to Take the Town Square Digital and Reinvent Government by California's then-lieutenant governor (and current governor) Gavin Newsom.

He joined Tanium as an intern in 2018 after graduating from the University of Southern California and, following the internship, went on to an account management role at Tanium for the state of Hawaii. Currently, Nandapurkar's role involves liaising with state chief information officers and chief information security officers to develop cost-effective cybersecurity solutions. He's working on projects with more than 20 departments in California and 15 departments in Hawaii.

One key project Nandapurkar contributed to is the development of the State of Hawaii Cyber Risk Scoring System, which has been honored with an award from the National Association of State CIOs. The program, which was designed with agile development, includes a real-time dashboard — which leveraged technology already in place for asset management and patching — reflecting cybersecurity risk with an easy-to-understand scoring mechanism that executive branch leaders can use to track risk posture.

Nandapurkar also collaborated on driving adoption of California's Cal-Secure cybersecurity strategy via a vendor-mapping white paper that became the industry standard for contractors working on Cal-Secure procurements to help transparently align vendor capabilities with program requirements. He is also working on a pilot deployment of an Endpoint Management-as-a-Platform tool that supports 15 California state departments for collaboration on technology solutions while segmenting critical agency information.

He is known among colleagues for going the extra mile to understand the intricacies of the business challenges he's facing. He has been on ride-alongs with law enforcement to understand how first responders interact with technology and has met with state CIOs and CISOs to understand how to deliver cost-effective solutions to customers.

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