TALKING CYBER AND MORE WITH ONE OF OUR COUNTY’s MOST PROMISING PROFESSIONALS

Meet New Team Member Sam Crystal

Sam_thumbnail[1].jpg

Just a few weeks at MCEDC, graduate student Sam Crystal is excited about his role to help cybersecurity companies grow their footprint in Montgomery County.

Sam Crystal is passionate about expanding the cyber ecosystem of Montgomery County and learning all he can about serving the business needs of that community.

“Cybersecurity and technology companies love being on the doorstep of the nation’s capital. It provides them with easy access to wealth of resources and places them at the hub of our government and policy makers,” said Sam. He’s also discovered how employees are able to be a part of one of the most vibrant cultures and metro areas in the world.

Sam participated in the recent Cyber Workgroup June meeting, assembled by Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation, which brings together industry leaders from the County’s biggest companies and local leaders. The Workgroup provides a forum to explore new avenues of growth for cyber in the County.

After learning from the local leaders, he took part in conversations about starting a ‘policy boot camp’ for cyber companies to help them better understand how state and local legislation can be used to the advantage of local companies. As a Public Policy student, it has been very insightful to hear the policy concerns and priorities coming out of the cyber industry.

Sam has been inspired by how much the team is committed to turning Montgomery County into a cybersecurity leader on par with Silicon Valley and Tel Aviv.

In addition to his interest in cyber, Sam is also passionate about finding affordable housing solutions. He is helping to prepare a report and recommendations for the County Council on how to create more workforce housing in the County, particularly through public-private partnerships. The task includes engaging businesses and local government officials to create best practices on finding affordable housing for professionals in the County. He will have the opportunity to present to the County Council recommendations on how to best address these issues and ways to partner with the private sector to create more housing options.

Sam came to MCEDC through the County Council Summer Fellowship, a program run through the County Council that places graduate students in Public Policy at different offices throughout the county government. He is attending the University of Maryland, and pursuing his Master’s in Public Policy with a specialization in Management and Leadership. Sam has also worked as the Director of Political Affairs at the Israeli Consulate on having Israeli cybersecurity firms open headquarters in the U.S.