Meet women leaders in cybersecurity attending the Duke CISO Executive Certificate

June 11, 2024 | Emilia Chiscop-Head, PhD

Meet women leaders in cybersecurity attending the Duke CISO Executive Certificate

Carolina Taborda is a Cybersecurity manager for an organization in Costa Rica

Carolina Taborda, Costa Rica: “I applied because to serve my team, members, and the ecosystem, I must be well prepared and keep learning from the best”

Carolina Taborda is a naturally born leader. One of the four women cybersecurity professionals attending the inaugural class of the Duke CISO Executive Certificate, Ms. Taborda served in various leadership roles and explored innovative areas. From being an advisor and a civil society advocate, she joined cybersecurity to work as a cluster manager for Cybersec Cluster Costa Rica, an organization founded in 2022 to facilitate and support cybersecurity innovation in the country and to help build strategic alliances in the industry. While joining the Duke Cybersecurity Leadership Program - Costa Rica, she learned about the CISO Executive Certificate and decided to apply. “I applied because to serve my team, members, and the ecosystem, I must be well prepared and keep learning from the best,” she said.

When asked what session she liked most during the in-person week of the Certificate Program, she said, “It is hard to choose. Billy Evans, Jennifer Swann, and Gurdeep Kaur were all very inspiring and engaging.”

“Serving as a Chief Information Security Officer is not just having a job. It requires a breadth of knowledge and skills and the flexibility to adapt to the organization’s goals and processes. You must be tremendously creative and capable of imagining everything. Also, to build trustful relationships, collaborate and communicate well”.

She learned some of these soft skills the hard way in her previous leadership roles: I wished I knew that leading a team was not about authority but humbleness and trust.” Before joining the CyberSec Cluster, Carolina was the president of STEAMED LATAM, a non-profit organization founded by three women – animated by transforming world education in innovation, entrepreneurship, arts, and sciences. Before that, she was a professional advisor in innovation and business development for the National Learning Institute in Costa Rica. “To become who I am today, the most important thing has been my support network, which has been built by many mentors, colleagues, family, and friends. You cannot make this journey alone if you want to get far away,” she said.