5 Questions for Tammi Morton, Vice President & Chief Security Officer, Raytheon Technologies
The data reveals what the private corporate security community sees every day: a glaring disparity in the numbers of women in leadership positions.
In 2022, a Zippia survey (verified against Bureau of Labor Statistics and Census data and current industry openings) shows that of the U.S.’s 45,224 current corporate security managers, only 11.1% are female.
We spoke with Tammi Morton, Raytheon’s Vice President and Chief Security Officer (CSO) and a security leader since 1986, on her career perspective and the value of diversity and inclusion in the security community.
Q: Since 2019 Raytheon has been supporting women in security events prior to the annual OSAC Middle East and North Africa Regional Committee’s conference. Why are these events important for Raytheon to underwrite through the ISF?
A: These events are important to Raytheon Technologies as we seek to enhance and increase diversity, equity and inclusion in the security field, and to create a forum that empowers participants to ascend to leadership positions. Through these events, we can cultivate a diverse and supportive network that strives to enrich the security profession. Given the speed of change, and the escalating global threat landscape, it is more important than ever to create and nurture strong partnerships and opportunities to collaborate with colleagues from similar sectors, across multiple industries, and with similar concerns.
Q: There is an increased focus on supporting women achieving CSO positions. How do you hope these events will help increase representation of women into these roles?
A: I have seen the role of security grow in sophistication and importance throughout a range of industries. These events provide a relevant curriculum as well as an opportunity to network and collaborate with colleagues at the most senior levels. These inclusive events support and enable women seeking a career in security, a field that can provide a rich, fulfilling and viable executive track.
Q: What was the most difficult part of your journey to become a CSO?
A: Believing that I could do it. Over time, my desire to learn more, hone hard and soft skills, and seize new opportunities gave me the confidence and foundation to mature my professional capabilities and reach the highest levels in the field.
Q: What can the security industry do to promote more women into leadership positions?
A: Expand the growth, development and maturity of organizations like ISF; support the recruitment of diversified top talent into security roles; mindfully and intentionally work within our organizations and in the industry for the development and succession planning that includes women; support each other, set each other up for success; become a mentor, advocate and champion for women seeking leadership development and opportunities in our industry.
Q: What advice would you give women who are trying to climb the ladder into CSO positions?
A: As you build your career, purposefully seek opportunities to diversify your roles and pursue the expansion of your skill sets so that you have a working knowledge of—and are proficient in—multiple security responsibilities and duties. Seek to participate in, and contribute to, projects and programs that add measurable value and demonstrate success and positive impact to the business or function. Don’t forget to hone your soft skills as well: social and interpersonal skills, professional attitude, teamwork, adaptability, work ethic, patience, time management and communication. Women succeed in this challenging field when they help each other: rather than perceiving the “career journey” as a competition, with winners and losers, it’s essential to realize that we all benefit when we all work together.
Thanks, Tammi, for your leadership and example to everyone in the global security community.
ABOUT TAMMI MORTON
As Vice President and Chief Security Officer for Raytheon Technologies, Tammi Morton is responsible for government security compliance, threat intelligence and analysis, physical operations, security investigations, travel, executive protection, workplace violence intervention, event security and security monitoring and response. She also oversees the Business Resilience and Crisis Management Program.
Tammi served as Vice President and Chief Security Officer at United Technologies Corporation prior to its merger with Raytheon. Before joining UTC, Tammi held several leadership positions in security, including: Head of Global Security for HP; North America Regional Security Manager for Merck & Co., Inc.; Head of Security for Bill and Melinda Gates; Global Programs and Security Manager for Amoco Corporation; and as a Special Agent with the Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS).