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EAC Election Readiness Summit: Investing in Security

Commissioner Thomas Hicks

On Wednesday, October 3, 2018, just one month before the 2018 midterm elections, the U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC) will host the EAC Election Readiness Summit in the Capitol Visitors Center, Rooms SVC 208/209 & SVC 215 from 9:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. ET.
The EAC Election Readiness Summit is a bookend to an all-day summit the EAC held at the National Press Club in January, giving the election community a chance to revisit some of the same topics and examine where things stand. Among the topics we will discuss are states’ plans to invest the $380 million Congress appropriated earlier this year and the steps election officials and national security leaders are taking to improve the security, accessibility and efficiency of the upcoming elections.
Since 2016, much of the public discourse around federal elections has focused on security – and for good reason. And while this very public attention to the issue of election security is fairly new, the work to secure elections is not new to election officials or the tens of thousands of election administration staff members and election workers who support that work. It is fair to say that 2016 changed the threat environment we face, pitting state and local election officials against nation state actors who scanned for vulnerabilities and were successful in accessing one state’s voter rolls. 
As the 2018 midterm elections near, election officials have proven themselves more than capable of managing these new security threats by increasing the security and resiliency of their systems and forming national and regional partnerships to improve information sharing and cyber protections.
During the first panel of the EAC Election Readiness Summit, I will speak with leading election officials at the forefront of these reforms. Our discussion will take a closer look at an intense year of preparation for election officials around the country, who have worked tirelessly to improve the security and resiliency of their systems and understand the demands of balancing security with the hundreds of other facets of their jobs that don’t make daily headlines. These officials understand the upcoming midterms will be not only a major test of their systems, but also voter confidence, and they – like the EAC – are committed to ensuring the process is accurate, accessible and fair for all.
The four panelists who will join me on Capitol Hill for the discussion are:

  • Alabama Secretary of State John Merrill
  • Washington Secretary of State Kim Wyman
  • Joe Rozell, Elections Director, Oakland County, Michigan
  • Meagan Wolfe, Administrator of Wisconsin Elections Commission

The 2018 EAC Election Readiness Summit is free and open to the public and the media. We hope you will join us for this important event. RSVPs are required and space is limited. 

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