Former DHS cybersecurity chief gets top job at In-Q-Tel

In-Q-Tel Inc., the intelligence community's venture capital arm, announced today that Amit Yoran, the Homeland Security Department's former cybersecurity director, has joined the company as president and chief executive officer.

Yoran's new job is a standout for the level of compensation paid to an employee of a federally sponsored technology organization.

Yoran succeeds Gilman Louie, who has led In-Q-Tel since its beginnings in 1999. Louie will continue with the Arlington, Va., venture fund briefly, In-Q-Tel said, and then leave to start a venture capital company in California.

Yoran, a West Point graduate, co-founded and was chief executive officer of Riptech Inc., which Symantec Corp. subsequently purchased. He is a specialist in systems security and has held senior IT security jobs with the Defense Department and the law enforcement community as well as serving on the boards of several IT companies.

In-Q-Tel, which was established by the CIA, invests in companies that produce technologies useful for intelligence work.

In-Q-Tel is organized under the IRS' 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status, a designation more often associated with charities such as the Red Cross and the Humane Society of the United States.

As such, the organization's tax return is public record and describes the organization's work in fostering intelligence community technology. The organization and its pay structure has been reviewed and approved by the CIA's inspector general and congressional staff.

In normal venture capital organizations, job tenure and executive compensation depends on the performance of the fund's investments.

But at In-Q-Tel, base salaries are supplemented by performance bonuses. For example, Louie's salary in the 2003 tax year amounted to $354,369, according to the tax return. It was supplemented by a $252,770 bonus and other benefits for total compensation of $748,798.

The tax return indicates that Louie contributed $101,650 to charity, leaving a net compensation of $647,139.

Nine of the organization's other top 10 employees received total compensation above $200,000, ranging from $233,022 to $496,305.

Wilson P. Dizard III is a staff writer for Washington Technology's sister publication, Government Computer News.

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