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U.S. State Department Launches Keith J. Krach Tech Diplomacy Award
[December 11, 2023]

U.S. State Department Launches Keith J. Krach Tech Diplomacy Award


At the U.S. State Department's prestigious annual awards ceremony, Secretary of State Tony Blinken presented the inaugural Keith J. Krach Tech Diplomacy Award, marking a significant milestone in recognizing remarkable individuals in the field of tech diplomacy. The award celebrates individual excellence and underscores the indispensable practice of tech diplomacy which was established by former Under Secretary of State Keith Krach. The award spotlights the pivotal contributions made by those who safeguard democratic values, enhance national security and advocate for the widespread adoption of trusted technology.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20231211621757/en/

Adam D. Murray, runner up for the Excellence in Economic Security Award; Keith J. Krach, fmr Under Secretary of State and chairman of the Krach Institute for Tech Diplomacy at Purdue; Tobei Arai, winner of the Tech Diplomacy Award; his wife; Ambassador Yuri Kim; U.S. diplomat Demian Smith (Photo: Business Wire)

Adam D. Murray, runner up for the Excellence in Economic Security Award; Keith J. Krach, fmr Under Secretary of State and chairman of the Krach Institute for Tech Diplomacy at Purdue; Tobei Arai, winner of the Tech Diplomacy Award; his wife; Ambassador Yuri Kim; U.S. diplomat Demian Smith (Photo: Business Wire)

The event was attended by Krach, who continues to serve as a tireless advocate championing the mission through the Krach Institute for Tech Diplomacy at Purdue University. His visionary leadership and unwavering dedication have paved the way for the recognition of exceptional individuals whose endeavors significantly contribute to global tech security.

"These remarkable honorees represent an exceptional blend of visionary leadership and tangible impact in the dynamic domain of Tech Diplomacy," Keith Krach remarked. "They are distinguished by their transformative leadership in building crucial partnerships with foreign governments and mobilizing the private sector to advance U.S. foreign policy related to technology. Their unwavering commitment to trust principles, encompassing transparency, integrity and human rights online, is matched only by their demonstrated leadrship and boundless creativity in crafting sustainable approaches that advance global tech security."



Presented by U.S. Secretary of State Tony Blinken, the Keith J. Krach Tech Diplomacy Award is given by the U.S. State Department and signifies the highest level of recognition for those who have excelled in the field of tech diplomacy. Foreign Service officers and Civil Service employees working in various capacities, whether abroad in embassies, consulates and missions or domestically within the State Department, are eligible for the award. The selection process is comprehensive, focusing on criteria such as transformational leadership in the emerging field of Tech Diplomacy, driving the adoption of trusted technology, cybersecurity strategy development and execution and the impact of strategies to enhance U.S. leadership in global tech security and technology policy.

The Award sets an exceptional standard for recognition, honoring individuals whose unwavering dedication to advancing the cause of freedom, countering techno-authoritarianism and closing the digital divide. They build global network of trusted allies, leverage private sector innovation and amplify democratic trust principles to confront digital authoritarianism. Their leadership extends to educating nations worldwide about the critical role of global tech security in safeguarding freedom and advocating for the development of technology standards rooted in trust principles. With initiative, executional excellence and a talent for inspiring and mobilizing others, they lead the charge in shaping a more secure and interconnected global tech landscape. The Keith J. Krach Tech Diplomacy Award celebrates these exceptional individuals, acknowledging their profound contributions to a safer and more connected world.


The selection committee, chaired by Nate Fick, Ambassador at Large for Cyberspace and Digital Policy, emphasized the enormous number of nominations received and the critical importance of tech diplomacy in today's interconnected world. The Keith J. Krach Tech Diplomacy Award recognizes individuals like Tobei Arai and Jesse P. Golland, the runner-up, for their exemplary efforts in promoting trust principles, building partnerships with foreign governments and the private sector and advancing U.S. foreign policy related to technology.

Inaugural Keith J. Krach Tech Diplomacy Award Winners:

Tobei Arai, the recipient of the prestigious Keith J. Krach Tech Diplomacy Award, is celebrated for his exceptional leadership in coordinating U.S. government support to Albania following a significant nation-state cyber-attack. Arai's outstanding efforts set a new benchmark for U.S. collaboration with stricken allies in the wake of cyber incidents, advancing foreign policy objectives. His multifaceted work spanned vital phases, including investigation, mitigation, recovery, public attribution and long-term cyber assistance. He played a pivotal role in establishing a trust network with Albanian government and security officials, facilitating support from both Albanian partners and the U.S. interagency. Arai's information-sharing with global allies culminated in the most coordinated response to a state-sponsored cyber-attack to date, earning him recognition as a trailblazer in the field of cyber diplomacy.

Jesse P. Golland, the Keith J. Krach Tech Diplomacy Award runner-up, showcased exemplary leadership during a severe Russian cyber-attack on Costa Rica's financial and health systems. His initiatives included collaborating with the FBI on a $15 million reward to identify the criminals, securing a cybersecurity assistance package and fostering DoD involvement to bolster Costa Rica's cyber capabilities. Golland's influential role in steering Costa Rica towards trusted 5G vendor solutions from Huawei technology and his collaborative leadership across U.S. departments and agencies have left a lasting and positive impact on the region, fortifying U.S. national and economic security.

About the Krach Institute for Tech Diplomacy at Purdue

The Krach Institute for Tech Diplomacy at Purdue is the world's preeminent nonprofit trusted technology accelerator. As the leader of a new category called Tech Diplomacy, the Institute is focused on driving outcomes in three core areas: the creation of action-oriented strategies and solutions that will help advance principles of trusted tech at a global scale; the growth of the Global Trusted Tech Network of individuals and organizations who support the fight against techno-authoritarianism; the creation of education and training to increase the widespread practice of Tech Diplomacy.

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