Cynthia Ayers is currently the Deputy to the Executive Director of the congressionally sponsored Task Force on National and Homeland Security. The focus of the task force is on the national security implications of catastrophic infrastructure failure. The mission is to advise Congress on measures that could be taken to mitigate the threat and ensure our country’s ability to survive in a “grid-down” environment.
In January of 1973 Ms. Ayers enlisted into the Women’s Army Corps, which was later absorbed by the traditionally male All-Volunteer Force. Working as a Morse Operator (05H) within the Army Security Agency (later known as the U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command), she spent five years in Germany, returning to work at Ft. Meade, Maryland. Almost seven years after her initial enlistment, she transferred to the Army Reserve, and subsequently the Air Force Reserve, while working as a civil servant with the National Security Agency.
Her intelligence community duties included a position as an NSA Representative to the DCI’s Counterterrorism Center, where she worked throughout the attack on the USS Cole and the attacks of 9/11 (2000-2002). Her federal service culminated in an eight-year assignment to the Center for Strategic Leadership as the National Security Agency’s Visiting Professor to the U.S. Army War College (USAWC). While at the USAWC, Professor Ayers taught electives on contemporary threats to national security from an intelligence perspective, and advised students on research concerning strategic intelligence, counterterrorism, cyber warfare, the Middle East and critical infrastructure protection.
Ms. Ayers is on the Board of Governors for Canada’s Mackenzie Institute, a member (and former Vice President) of the Central Pennsylvania Chapter of InfraGard, a member of InfraGard’s EMP Special Interest Group (SIG), a member of the Secure the Grid Coalition, and a cyber consultant to the Strategic Concepts and Doctrine Division within the Center for Strategic Leadership (U.S. Army War College). She belongs to the Rotary Club of Carlisle-Sunrise, the Association of the U.S. Army, the American Legion, and the U.S. Army War College Alumni Association. Ms. Ayers is a member of the Adams County Republican Club, the Republican Club of Hanover, as well as an elected member of the Adams County Republican Committee and President of the Adams County Council of Republican Women.
Ms. Ayers has written several published articles on national security issues, is currently working on a book concerning bias within the federal bureaucracies, and co-authored academic papers on the development of cognitive agents for intelligence analysis.