AUSTIN, Texas, June 21, 2016 /PRNewswire/-- General John R. Allen (USMC Ret.), former commander of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), deputy commander of US CENTCOM and most recently Special Envoy to the President, today joined SparkCognition's Board of Directors. A long-time leader in defense cyber security, General Allen brings his extensive knowledge and experience to one of the world's leading cognitive security and analytics firms. SparkCognition makes products that identify, analyze, learn, anticipate and adjust to impending and real time cyber security threats.
By adding General Allen to its Board of Directors, SparkCognition secures the insights, experience, and leadership of one of the United States' most accomplished military commanders. Currently a Senior Fellow and the Co-Director of Brooking's Center for 21st Century Security and Intelligence, General Allen's appointment reinforces recent achievements and recognition SparkCognition has earned as a formative leader of the emerging Cognitive Security Industry.
"General Allen brings gravitas, experience and tremendous leadership acumen to SparkCognition," said Amir Husain, Founder and CEO of SparkCognition. "As President Obama eloquently noted, General Allen is one of our nation's most respected and experienced military experts. He has served our country with distinction for almost forty years and understands how critical AI and related advanced technologies are for securing our nation's cyber and physical assets. General Allen is not only one of our most brilliant wartime military commanders, he is also a statesman and scholar with immense policy experience. This makes him one of a handful of global leaders with a profound understanding of the growing cyber-physical challenges the world faces. He brings a unique commitment to enabling us to find solutions we need to address those challenges in the national interest. We could not be more honored to have him on our Board and look forward to working closely with General Allen to build and deploy an Artificial Intelligence capability second to none."
General Allen, a retired United States Marine Corps four-star General and past Deputy Commander of U.S. Central Command, previously served as Commander of the International Security Assistance Force and U.S. Forces Afghanistan (USFOR-A). President Barack Obama appointed General Allen as Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL, where he led the complex assignment of building, from conception, a robust international coalition that would undertake a wide range of political, diplomatic, military, economic, and other efforts to degrade and ultimately defeat ISIL.
"Joining SparkCognition's Board of Directors," said General Allen, "opens the next chapter in my life-long commitment to ensuring our country's security and defense. I look forward to working with SparkCognition's founder and CEO, Amir Husain, and my fellow Board Members. Amir is an inspirational leader who is a true innovator and recognized technologist. His contributions have already made important advances in AI technology in an astoundingly short period of time."
"SparkCognition's impressive team is driving innovation in a field that is vital to our national security," General Allen continued. "Today, our country faces a great many challenges, but perhaps none as significant as the rapidly evolving cyber threats that compromise our nation's critical infrastructure. SparkCognition is deploying next generation cognitive technology that is necessary to address these realities, and I consider their work a national asset."
"General Allen is one of the finest military leaders and strategists of our generation," said Manoj Saxena, Chair of SparkCognition's Board of Directors. "He has served our country with distinction and is a thought leader on defense and security issues through his work at the Brookings Institute. We are honored to welcome him to our Board and I look forward to working alongside a national hero."
SparkCognition develops cutting-edge machine learning that models physical and virtual assets, continuously learns from data, and derives intelligent insights to secure and protect infrastructure round the clock. The company's technology is capable of harnessing real time sensor data and learning from it continuously, allowing for more accurate risk mitigation and prevention policies to intervene and avert disasters. The company's cybersecurity centered solution analyzes structured and unstructured data and natural language sources to identify potential attacks in the IT and IoT environments. The uniqueness of the cognitive platform is underscored by the fact that it can continuously learn from data and derive automated insights to thwart emerging issues, without the need to build manual models.
SparkCognition, Inc., the world's first Cognitive Security Analytics company, is based in Austin, Texas. The company is successfully building and deploying a Cognitive, data-driven Analytics platform for Clouds, Devices and the Internet of Things (IoT) industrial and security markets by applying patent-pending algorithms that deliver out of-band, symptom-sensitive analytics, insights, and security.
SparkCognition was named the 2015 Hottest Start Up in Austin by SXSW and the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce. The Company was the only US-based company to win Nokia's 2015 Open Innovation Challenge. In 2015 as a Gartner Cool Vendor, SparkCognition garnered the Frost and Sullivan's Technology Convergence Award. Recently, the Edison Award recognized the company's achievements.
About Amir Husain
SparkCognition's Founder and CEO, Amir Husain, is a highly awarded serial entrepreneur and prolific inventor with nearly forty patents and applications to his name. Amir has been named the top technology entrepreneur in Austin by the Austin Business Journal, is the 2016 Austin Under 40 Award Winner for Technology and Science, has been named a Top 100 Global AI Influencer by Onalytica, and serves as an advisor to the IBM Watson Group and the University of Texas Computer Science Department. For more information on the company, its technology and team, please visit http://www.sparkcognition.com.
About General John Allen
During his nearly 38-year military career, Gen. Allen served in a variety of command and staff positions in the Marine Corps and the Joint Force. As a general officer, General Allen served as the principal director of Asia-Pacific policy in the Office of the Secretary of Defense. General Allen's contingency and combat operations assignments included Operation Sea Signal in the Caribbean in 1994, Operation Joint Endeavor in the Balkans from 1995 to 1996, Operation Iraqi Freedom in Iraq from 2007 to 2008, and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan from 2011 to 2013.
Beyond his operational credentials, General Allen has also led a number of professional military educational programs including service as the director of the Marine Infantry Officer Program; commanding officer of the Marine Corps Basic School; and commandant of midshipmen in the United States Naval Academy. He has served as the Marine Corps fellow to the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a commandant of the Marine Corps fellow, and was the first Marine officer to serve as a term member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He remains a permanent and active member of the Council. General Allen holds a Bachelor of Science in operations analysis from the U.S. Naval Academy, a master's degree in national security studies from Georgetown University, a Master of Science in strategic intelligence from the Defense Intelligence College, and a Master of Science in national security strategy from the National Defense University.
General Allen is the recipient of numerous US military awards. For his leadership of their forces in combat and crisis, he has also been decorated by NATO and multiple countries including Afghanistan, Australia, France, Italy, Poland and Mongolia. He was the co-recipient of the 2015 Eisenhower Award of the Business Executives for National Security (BENS).
Laura Beck, for SparkCognition