BILLERICA, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 20, 2005--Robert V. LaPenta has been confirmed as the Chairman of the Board and the former Director of Central Intelligence (DCI) George Tenet has become a member of the Board of Directors of advanced technology identity solutions provider Viisage (NASDAQ: VISGD). Both appointments add deeper industry expertise and broader market reach to the company as it seeks to become the de facto standard for protecting and securing personal identities.
"The ability to attract individuals like George Tenet to the Viisage Board is a significant accomplishment for this company and speaks volumes to the opportunities ahead," said Bob LaPenta, Chairman of the Board of Viisage and Founder and CEO of L-1 Investment Partners. "George's intimate understanding and experience with the national security community will be invaluable as we strive to become the leader in the identity solutions market."
Tenet's seven-year term as the Director of Central Intelligence was the second-longest in U.S. history. He first served as Deputy Director of Central Intelligence from 1995-1997 until he became Director after a unanimous confirmation vote in the United States Senate. He served as the Director until 2004.
President George W. Bush awarded Tenet the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2004, one of the two highest civilian awards in the U.S. The Presidential Medal of Freedom recognizes individuals who have made an especially meritorious contribution to the security or national interests of the United States, world peace, cultural, or other significant public or private endeavors.
"The Viisage vision aligns with my professional belief that protecting and securing a personal identity should be an end-to-end dynamic process and I am committed to using my Board position to help Viisage with this endeavor," said Mr. Tenet. "The criticality of Viisage's strategy for identity solutions should not be underestimated. The ability to verify an individual's identity, validate their credentials and corroborate that the individual is entitled to the privileges assigned to his or her credential is paramount to protecting our citizens from identity theft and preserving their safety."
Mr. LaPenta is founder and CEO of L-1 Investment Partners, a private investment management firm specializing in identity authentication and management through biometric-enabled technologies. Mr. LaPenta has more than 30 years of executive management experience, completing more than 60 acquisitions and creating billions of dollars of shareholder wealth.
"We are thrilled to welcome Bob and George to the team and I believe that the contributions to our business that they will make will be immeasurable -- I look forward to working closely with them moving forward," said Bernard Bailey, President and CEO of Viisage. "Bob's vision, experience and insights, coupled with George's vast knowledge and ability to address the needs of the federal government, the Department of Homeland Security, and international customers, provides a major boost to our efforts in bringing advanced technology identity solutions to the public and private sector."
Viisage Board membership today stands at 11, with six independent members. Mr. LaPenta expects to announce the second appointment to the Viisage Board shortly. Members of the Viisage Board of Directors serve a three-year term.