The Stowe Foundation Team
CV: Donald Ritzman
Mr. Ritzman is a seasoned executive with over three and a half decades experience having held positions within SMB’s through Fortune 500 companies in engineering, business development, sales, marketing and executive management. For the past 25 years, he has been involved with various aspects of cybersecurity to develop practical data protection solutions that help thwart cyber-theft.
Throughout his career, Mr. Ritzman has been involved with many firsts. At GE CALMA, he introduced the world’s first voice controlled integrated circuit design automation system. As a Senior Design Engineer at Fairchild Semiconductor, he helped to develop the world’s first Silicon Gate CMOS family of Semi-Custom Gate Arrays. As a technical program manager at Valid Logic, Mr. Ritzman led the development and rollout of the world’s first Advanced Silicon Compiler Design Solution which allowed integrated circuit design engineers to mathematically describe their logic designs and then automatically convert the math into silicon-based integrated circuit designs in a matter of minutes.
At Sun Microsystems he was employee 126 and as Marketing Manager there, was a member of the team that rolled out the world’s first engineering workstations. And he was a member of the team that did the roadshow for the company during its IPO.
At WAM!NET, Mr. Ritzman was the Business Unit Manager of the company’s premier Media & Entertainment division, where he helped the company develop the first fully secure collaborative network in the industry and become the leader in secure networking in the Media and Entertainment market. As well, Mr. Ritzman was a member of the team that did the roadshow for the company during its IPO.
Mr. Ritzman also held the position of VP Marketing for the New Media group at Global Crossing where he was responsible for developing and implementing the company’s business and marketing strategy to penetrate the Media and Entertainment industries.
Simultaneously with his role as CEO & President for Absolute Identification, Inc., working on various aspects of data protection products and services, Mr. Ritzman also established an Incubator to help stand-up new ideas, technologies and companies. His work in this area continues today.
In Jan 2014, Mr. Ritzman was a founder, CEO and Chairman of the Board for Ghost Systems, Inc., to extend his work in the areas of networking and advanced Cybersecurity technologies and techniques and is still the CEO of the company today. This effort, combined with his previous experience in Cyber-technologies gives Mr. Ritzman over twenty-five years of practical practice in dealing with Cyber-related issues affecting the world today.
Mr. Ritzman earned a BSEE from The Ohio State University and an MBA with emphasis in Strategic Management from Regis University. In 2018, he earned a CEU Certificate in Finance from Cornell.
In addition to his primary responsibilities, Mr. Ritzman also participated in other business-related positions including;
• From 2005 – 2007, Mr. Ritzman was appointed the California Chairman of The National Business Advisory Council to President Bush.
• In 2006 and 2007, Mr. Ritzman was recognized by The National Business Advisory Council, as the Distinguished Business Man of the Year for his contributions to the local California economy.
• From 2009 – 2015, he was the CEO and Chairman of the Board of Absolute Identification, Inc.
• From 2011 – 2013, he was the Chairman of the Board of Belhara Security Systems.
• From 2012 - 2015, he was a board member to NP Bank & Trust.
Mr. Ritzman has earned numerous awards for himself and the companies he leads;
• 2015 and 2016 AI International, Mr. Ritzman, CEO of the Year – Cybersecurity
• 2016 Corp America, Mr. Ritzman, CEO of the Year
• 2018 Lawyer International, Mr. Ritzman, Best Network Security CEO – West USA
• 2018 Corporate Visions Magazine, Mr. Ritzman, Corporate Excellence Awards - Most Influential CEO of the Year - Cyber Security
• 2019 Corporate Excellence Awards – Cybersecurity CEO of the Year - USA
• 2019 ACQ Global Awards, Mr. Ritzman, US Gamechanger of the Year
• 2017 ACQ Global Awards, Ghost Systems, Cyber-security solutions provider of the year
• 2017 CRN, Ghost Systems, Top mid-market IT vendor of the year
• 2017 Ghost Systems, Inc. won the true innovators award in Cybersecurity for Fintech
• 2018 Lawyer International Legal 100, Ghost Systems, Cybersecurity Cyber Solutions Provider of the Year
• 2019 ACQ Global Awards, Ghost Systems, US Cybersecurity Solutions Provider of the Year (Financial Markets),
• 2019 ACQ Global Awards, Ghost Systems, US Cybersecurity Innovation Firm of the Year.
In addition to his roles and responsibilities within the business community, Mr. Ritzman also participated in a couple of important roles in his private life as well including;
• From 1995-98, Mr. Ritzman held the Monterey Bay Area District Commissioner position for the Boy Scouts of America – a volunteer position – and was responsible for managing the scouting activities in the Monterey Bay area including opening new Packs and Troops, as well as Cub Scout Pack and Boy Scout Troop policy enforcement, activities and events.
• From 2006 to 2010, he was an advisory board member of Scotts Valley Unified School District leading the implementation of a district-wide technology refresh and secure IT infrastructure program. As well, he was directly involved in helping the school district define and develop processes and procedures for keeping students safe during various types of emergency situations.