DHS Official, Business Experts to Speak at Boston-Area Homeland Security Conference

WASHINGTON , May 7 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Robert Hooks , a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) deputy assistant secretary, will be among the speakers at the 2008 IEEE International Conference on Technologies for Homeland Security. A business panel of experts, including many from Massachusetts , will also discuss the commercialization of homeland security technologies.

The eighth-annual conference is scheduled for 12-13 May at the Westin Hotel in Waltham, Mass. For more information and to register, go to http://www.ieeehomelandsecurityconference.org.

The National Science and Technology Council, Nuclear Defense Research and Development Subcommittee, calls the event "the key homeland security conference in 2008 to share the U.S. nuclear defense research and development roadmap with the global technology innovation community."

Hooks, deputy assistant secretary for Weapons of Mass Destruction and Biodefense in DHS' Office of Health Affairs, will speak during a plenary session Monday 12 May at 10 a.m. His topic is, "The Need for Effective Technologies to Support Biodefense."

"Technology plays a critical role in filling biodefense capability gaps to further the homeland security mission," Hooks said.

The "Business Panel," set for Tuesday, 13 May from 8 to 9:30 a.m. , will include Dr. Thomas Cellucci , chief commercialization officer for the DHS Science and Technology Directorate; and Peter Ciganer , executive vice president, In-Q-Tel.

They will be joined by Ralph E. Taylor-Smith , general partner, Battelle Ventures; Arthur Robert , industry director, Defense & Renewable Energy Technologies, Massachusetts Office of Business Development; Dennis Treece , director of corporate security, Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport) and director, Massport Transportation Security Center of Excellence; and Robert Seelandt , partner manager, MetaCarta, Inc.

Gregory Bialecki , undersecretary, Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development, Commonwealth of Massachusetts , will deliver the keynote address and welcome the panel.

The 2008 IEEE Homeland Security Conference is organized by the IEEE Boston Section and IEEE-USA. Industry sponsors include Massport, SAIC and Raytheon.

IEEE-USA advances the public good and promotes the careers and public policy interests of more than 215,000 engineers, scientists and allied professionals who are U.S. members of the IEEE. IEEE-USA is part of the IEEE, the world's largest technical professional society with 375,000 members in 160 countries. See http://www.ieeeusa.org.

SOURCE IEEE-USA (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers)