Drenan Dudley has been appointed as the acting director of the U.S. Office of the National Cyber Director, succeeding Kemba Walden, who recently stepped down. This marks the second acting director in nine months, emphasizing the ongoing challenges in filling the permanent leadership role.
Henry Coker, the White House’s pick for the permanent director position, recently cleared a Senate committee vote, but a floor vote is still pending for final approval. Walden withdrew her name from consideration for the permanent role after reports surfaced regarding personal debts, prompting the need for an interim leader.
Dudley, a veteran Senate Appropriations Committee staffer, expressed her honor in leading colleagues as the acting National Cyber Director. The role involves coordinating federal cybersecurity efforts and overseeing the implementation of the national cyber strategy released by the Biden administration in March.
Lawmakers had previously expressed concerns about the lack of permanent leadership, emphasizing the critical need for a Senate-confirmed National Cyber Director.
Dudley is expected to serve in the interim position until the Senate completes the confirmation process for Coker, who, if approved, will become the second permanent director of the National Cyber Director.