Regional chapters are essential to our mission to promote the secure adoption of cloud computing. CSA chapter members are composed primarily of individual members. The CSA chapter must have a minimum of 20 members, who must already be established as CSA members. Members should represent a reasonable effort to include a credible group of cloud security experts for your region. Chapters are a great way to further your knowledge of cloud computing security issues, and network with local peers facing the same challenges in securing cloud computing. If you are interested in starting a local chapter, information is contained in the CSA chapter startup guide. Find a chapter in your area: Existing Chapters. Have questions about joining or starting a chapter? Contact: [email protected].
Submit Your Application
Interested in forming a new chapter? Download our Chapter Application and submit your application using the following form.
Chapter Standard Operating Procedures and Best Practices
Audience: Chapter Leaders
Click on each link for more information
CSA Chapter Quick Start
|CSA Chapter Quick Start||Download (.docx)|
1. Identify the Chapter
1.1 Verify that a chapter does not already exist in desired community:
1.2 Scope the regional boundary
- Choose a boundary that the chapter can support—a city, state, country or region.
- Chapter leadership takes a lot of commitment and time.
- Scope the chapter only to what the can be realistically supported by the leadership team.
1.3 Name the chapter
Use a clear name that is easy to understand and find.
Cloud Security Alliance Atlanta Chapter is an example.
Or Cloud Security Alliance Georgia Chapter if the scope is all of Georgia and your chapter will cover that.
2. Form a Board
2.1 Begin with a minimum 5 volunteers who want to serve:
President, Secretary, Membership Director, Treasurer, and Program Director (speakers).
2.2 Include a mix of organizations:
No more than two people should be on the board from the same one.
Schedule a board meeting—in person or by phone conferencing
2.3 Add these additional roles as needed
Venue and catering
Partnering with other related local groups and events
Creating and managing an online presence:
- Administration of a web site, Meet-up group, LinkedIn/social media groups, etc.
- Assign primary and backup administrators and access
2.4 Submit the board contact list along with the chapter start-up application
3. Create a list of 20 or more members
It includes the Board of Directors. Label these roles
Include LinkedIn urls for each of the 20 members including the Board.
4. Complete the online application form
Download the word document and fill it out.
5. Submit application form
- Send the application form and board of directors list to: [email protected]
- CSA Global reviews chapter application and arranges a meeting time with the chapter.
- Chapter updates the application for chapter focus.
- CSA Global informs the chapter of acceptance.
- Upon confirmation, chapter moves forward to host their 1st event.
CSA Chapter Start-up Best Practices
|CSA Chapter Start-up Best Practices||Download (.doc)|
From the CSA Southwest Arizona Chapter
Get your charter first through CSA Global, if you haven't done that yet. Make an email request to [email protected] Online applications and quick start guides are also available online at the CSA site under Chapters tab. You can also ask for guidance.
Get a mentor from a successful chapter and use it for your startup and for your first few meetings. For your chapter, contact the chapter coordinator and ask for a referral.
Getting started is easier than you think; just do it! It will evolve and you will adjust.
We have more detailed guides on each of these sections. This is meant to cover you from creating your board to hosting and covering costs for events out of the gate.
To read more, download the CSA Chapter Start-up Best Practices.
Legal Formation for Your CSA Chapter
|Chapter Standard Operating Procedures and Best Practices||Download (docx)|
Chapters legally form for one of three reasons:
- To open a bank account to accept and process monies. A bank may require legal formation. Individual banks and countries requirements differ, for what is required to open a chapter bank account.
- To contract as a legal entity: For instance, to contract with CSA to allow the chapter to bring in Its own CCSK certified (by CSA) trainer.
- To gain creditability with partners, sponsors and members.
To read more, download the Chapter Standard Operating Procedures and Best Practices.
Partnering and Outreach with Other Organizations
|Partnering and Outreach with Other Organizations||Download (.docx)|
Benefits of Partnering
Benefits of Partnering with Organizations
There can be a great deal of reciprocity with CSA Chapters and other organizations, such as:
- Send announcements about upcoming meetings for conferences
- Announce your event at a group meeting
- Post your events on the group’s social media site or web site if permitted
- Encourage their constituents to join your chapter
- Provide your members discounts on training or events
- Offer your members a discount on a product or service (avoid anything that would imply endorsement)
Provide experts in related field to address your members (for example privacy, audit, legal, IT, change management or accounting)
- Volunteer support to take on a larger event
- Partner with like-missioned organizations to co-host a meeting or larger event. Clear roles and responsibilities are key to this type of partnership.
Potential New Members
- Provide meeting space for an event. A larger employer might enjoy supporting your cybersecurity efforts and gain good will and public relations from their donation.
- Vendors with a large conference room may be very willing to host ongoing meetings (be sure that they are comfortable with your relationship with other sponsors).
- Other Associations
- Local for-profit security conferences and event producers that come to your region, such as SecureWorld, Data Connectors, Interface, and other large technical conferences. They usually will give you a table and display your logo and chapter name in their event listing, in exchange for you sending their invitations and reminders to your chapter members. If you offer a good door prize, you can get sign-ups if the event is relevant to a cloud security audience.
- Government Entities
- Educational Institutions
Privacy of Members
We do give out member lists or contacts to these partner organizations. Any co-marketing communication is sent by the chapter to their members. Third parties may contact chapter offices thru CSA Global or thru online chapter listings.
To prevent any miscommunications, a written agreement between all parties detailing responsibilities is recommended. This can be formal, or a simple email correspondence. You may want a signed document if it’s complex. Do not sign up for events that create unacceptable financial risk for your chapter. We make agreements and brand only for our chapter, never for CSA Global.
Funding Your Chapter Through Sponsorships
- Sponsorship Goals and Board Role
- Benefits the Sponsor Provides to the Chapter
- Benefits the Sponsors Want in Return
Types of Sponsors
- Single Event
- One-time or Tailored
- Reciprocal (such as a free facility)
- Define your Needs
- Create a List of Potential Sponsors
- Establish Policies for Sponsorship & Speaking Opportunities
- Define your Member Demographics
- Write your Sponsorship Guidelines
- Establish a Timeline for Solicitation
- Solicit Sponsors
|Funding Your Chapter Through Sponsorships||Download (.docx)|
Sponsorship Goal for the Board
Your goal is to cover financial and venue support for your chapter programs in your community. You do this by creating a successful mutual benefit relationship with organizations who will pay for the value they receive in return.
Our industry has a large pool of vendors and once your chapter can demonstrate value in the demographic, getting sponsors will be easier. At start-up it is harder—the potential sponsors want an audience that buys or influences purchases of their products or services.
You can do this. By building relationships and chapter programs to meet sponsor needs, you can cover chapter expenses and a steady base of funding. Many chapters depend on sponsors as their sole source of revenue. If you use sponsor speakers, you will have to ensure vendor neutrality, so your audience stays—and comes back the next time.
If you are new at recruiting sponsors, it can be difficult, as any skill is.
Who should you ask, how do you ask, what should they provide for your chapter and members and what do you need to provide in return? With some guidance you can serve our chapter and the sponsors mutually.
When you develop a group of trusted sponsors, you will be able to focus more on serving members and less time on money worries to fund your chapter. It gets easier!
Start small with vendors who are members of your chapter or those who provide goods or services to you at work.
Sponsorship Director Role
If your chapter wants sponsor funding, then add a Sponsorship Director. Your board will need to appoint someone to be responsible for vendor relations and sponsorship. Based on your chapter leadership structure, you can decide where to put the role and how to title it. Consider which tasks you can delegate to volunteers as your program grows. The basic of this role:
- Develop and manage the sponsorship program
- Prepare sponsorship packages and marketing materials
- Create a list of prospective sponsors and decide who is the best person to approach them
- Solicit and secure sponsors
- Prepare and manage sponsor contracts/agreements
- Coordinate with your chapter Treasurer on invoicing and payment
- Ensure sponsorship is paid in advance of events
- Oversee sponsorship deliverables; coordinate with your chapter to make sure they are delivered
- Coach sponsors to be successful
- Serve as the on-site liaison for sponsors at events
- Send thank you notes following events
- Manage sponsorship renewals
- Maintain the chapter’s master list of sponsors
Example Details of what a Sponsorship Director tasks for the chapter:
- Identify and reach out to potential sponsors
- Respond quickly to inquiries and leads regarding potential sponsorship
- Create a one-sheet on sponsorship that is clear on value proposition and benefits to potential sponsors, plus pricing
- Have the one-sheet posted to the chapter web site/event platform
- Accept and process payments by check or credit card
- Collect collateral from the sponsor: Logo and company name and description to include on the web site and in program announcements
- Coordinate with the sponsor to execute the end-to-end agreement upon payment
- Coordinate with other board members to add the sponsor payment, logo and announcement and table details to the chapter program
- Add the sponsor to the member list so they receive event announcements
Benefits your sponsors can provide:
- Facilities and audio visual for your meetings
- Meals and refreshments
- Products and services for prizes
- Speakers and educational content – preferably from their company leadership, security team, partners or clients
- Technical training opportunities
- Solutions members can take back to their companies
- Access to their security teams and clients as potential members
What sponsors want from your chapter:
- Opportunities to achieve their marketing goals
- Access to your members who make or influence purchasing decisions for their employers
- Acquire qualified leads for a small investment
- Venue to showcase thought leadership in the industry
- Establish themselves as trusted advisors
- Enhance their company’s reputation and stature
- Expand their peer network of cybersecurity professionals
Types of Sponsors
Chapters can offer a variety of sponsorship opportunities for different fees. These range from a one-time meeting presentation to the commitment of an annual sponsorship package based on tiered levels.
Examples your chapter can use to create your own:
Lunch and learn monthly sessions. The sponsor provides lunch, with a clear understanding that the presentation must be technical and cannot include any kind of sales pitch. The chapter provides a second speaker.
Free Training from Sponsors, where the sponsor pays and provides food and beverage throughout the day.
In-Kind or reciprocal Sponsorships. The company may donate meeting space and the chapter then provides an equivalent sponsorship that includes benefits similar to a comparable paying sponsor. A sponsor may also give your group an opportunity to speak in exchange for something else of value.
- Your sponsorship guidelines should clearly define the sponsorship levels, benefits and investment opportunities that you offer
- A contact should be within the document and on your chapter’s platform/web site
- This sponsor document can be posted on your chapter platform where it is easy to find
- You can also tailor specific agreements with a sponsor
- Identify the priorities and funding required to support your chapter
- Make a budget and create a list of resources for each priority. Sponsorships can be money or goods and services. Whatever you ask from sponsors should benefit your members and support your chapter goals.
Create a list of potential sponsors in your area and region
- Which companies offer cybersecurity solutions?
- Who is sponsoring competing organization in your region?
- Do any of the companies that your current members work for have interest?
Document a sponsorship guideline for speaking opportunities
- Content must be vendor neutral
- Content and speakers are subject to chapter approval
- Slide deck can be submitted in advance
- Identify other ways to give speakers visibility and provide quality vendor neutral content
- Sponsor can provide a client presenter or a practitioner from their company, instead of a marketing/sales person
- They can also bring a member of their security team to present – CISO, CTO, Security Architect
- They can invite a client to provide a case study or demo on how they address a topic
- Sponsor can introduce their speaker or another presenter of your choice
- Vendor sponsors the speaker of your choice, gets 2-5 minutes on the agenda, has a display table and offers a prize drawing from business cards collected at the table.
- Write down your policies and have your board approve them
Define your Member Demographics
- Look at your own membership for significance to sponsors.
Who is your typical member, or the roles of some of your member categories? E.g., Are they IT or security practitioners, managers, service providers? Does your chapter have a high concentration of members who work for financial institutions, health care, technology companies, higher education, government, transportation, etc.?).
- What is the breakdown of your chapter membership:
Managers, architects, engineers and analysts, etc. What are the typical job titles? How many years of experience do they have? Are they decision makers for buying? Do they influence or support purchasing decisions? How many work for large corporations of a given size? What size company do they work for? How many employees?
- If you belong to other organizations in the area, find out what they are offering and charging sponsors.
- An “Inaugural Annual Sponsorship can be an easy sell at the right price point, for a set # of events in a given time period.
- Other than a one-off special event, annual sponsorships are an easier sell than individual ones that force you to keep recruiting to cover your costs.
- What is your price point for each level?
- Don’t under value what you are offering
- It is easier to lower or discount a sponsorship than it is to make significant increases
- What marketing materials will you include in your sponsorship packet?
- Introduce CSA and your chapter including member demographics and why sponsorship is a win-win for the sponsor and the chapter
- Benefits of sponsorship
- Sponsorship packages and fees
- Requirements of sponsors
- Have a formal sponsorship agreement that outlines the deliverables to be provided by each, guidelines and payment information
- Establish a timeline
- Allow enough lead time for your vendor representative to get it through the company’s approval process
- Many companies operate on a calendar year; get proposals to them early (i.e. Q4) so you can be included in their budgets
- If volunteers are assisting you, hold regular reporting meetings
- For accountability, report on sponsorship at every chapter leadership team meeting
- If other volunteers are helping, create talking points they can use (a script)
- Make sure you have sponsorship brochure/packet when you talk with them
- Set up a follow-up date, and then follow-up!
- When you are recruiting, send a confirmation email the same day on what you talked about and when you will follow-up.
- Have answers ready for any questions they have
- Follow-up consistently and quickly
- Do NOT recruit sponsors at other partner events you attend—for-profit conferences where you are exhibiting for your chapter, or at partner events.
- Sponsors should look at partnership with CSA and a long-term relationship where they can showcase what they know - not what they sell
- Become a trusted advisor to the chapter: An active member who can be counted on to give good advice and has members coming to them for solutions
- Offer to talk to the speaker prior to the event and help them understand the audience
- Presentations can:
- Focus on research
- Have a client present a case study
- If a product for your company is mentioned, also mention other companies’ products
- Focus on information for experienced information security professionals
- Engage with members, ask them what they would like to know/what questions they have
- Encourage discussion and healthy debate
- Make sure you present information that is valuable to the audience
Create Sponsorship Packages
Manage the Sponsor Function
Guidelines for Sponsors who are Speaking:
Thought Leadership Vendor Neutral Presentations
Standard Services that CSA Global Provides to Chapters
- Chapter Requests
- Chapter’s Online Platform
- SOP Manual: Chapter Guide on Startup and Operation
- Monthly Chapter Meetings by Region
- CSA Branding
- Revenue Sharing
- CCSK Tokens
- Career Leadership Opportunities
|Standard Services that CSA Global Provides to Chapters||Download (.docx)|
How to Get and Manage Speakers for Chapter Events
The speakers and program are the most important for chapter event success and take the most work. It also takes someone comfortable networking and who has a good network. They must also be committed. This a fun role, but not for introverts, or those who cannot make the commitment required.
This might be called a Speaker Director, Program Chair or Education Director, it varies by Chapter.
- Speaker Leads
- Tracking Your Speakers
- Speaker Guidelines
- Speaker Confirmation
- Board Role: How to Add Speakers to Event Agenda
|How to Get and Manage Speakers for Chapter Events||Download (.docx)|
Administering a CSA Chapter Web Site
Setup and administration of a chapter web site, that is, a micro-site provided by CSA Global to the chapter.
CSA once provided chapters a basic shell of a website. Some chapters may not have it as a priority or they prefer other platforms. But for others like Seattle, and Phoenix, it is central and crucial.
The WordPress platform from CSA Global is at least 2 years out of date and not optimized for mobile. We have less than ten chapters whose web sites are actively managed and current, of those listed on the CSA Global Chapter site listings (which may be less than accurate). Others are out of date, some because they moved to Meetup, and others are dormant because the chapter is inactive. By and large, most chapters were just given LinkedIn.
Currently, CSA are no longer providing web sites to chapters. (Some chapters have their own.)
What Chapters Use Websites For
- Primary presence to promote the chapter and to find it online (Meet-Up is an alternative platform, and LinkedIn is used as primary or secondary by chapters)
- Event marketing: Post current events and registration URLs
- List future chapter event schedule
- List sponsors
- Maintain billing and payment functions on the site (for sponsor invoicing and credit card payment link)
- Post sponsor options and contact
- Maintain security of the site, and access for members (internal and external)
- Keep WordPress up-to-date (as much as the CSA template allows, or if chapter has their own site)
- List contacts for chapter board of directors and provide means of reaching them
- Post by-laws on the web site that describe chapter operations
- Link to CSA Global site for organization membership, research papers, workgroups, etc.
Two Administrators Assigned:
At least two chapter board members should be named with administrator rights to the web site, so there is no single point of failure—primary and backup. On CSA-owned microsites, CSA will also have this capability by default as the owner/creator. When board roles change, these assigned administrators would be updated through a request made to the chapter coordinator.
- What skill level and activities are required to manage this site?
- How do chapters manage their web site, those that have them?
Per Denise Simons, President of CSA Seattle Chapter (who is currently administering their web site):
The webmaster technical skill set isn’t hard to find. Most people have played with a website at one time or another. It’s the vision for the content that is harder to locate the right person.
As for mobile and WordPress being out of date I’m not sure what issues people are referring to.
As to skill level. With any website you need to know html, dhtml and understand cascading style sheets and how a website works. Because the sites are micro the CSS is set by global. It is frustrating being a micro site that you can’t get into the backend of the system and make changes or see what is happening. Sometimes when global makes a change to their system it impacts the coding for us or how a page on our site is displayed. This may be what people are referring to when they say WordPress is out of date. But any updates have to come from global since we are micro and don’t have complete administrative access rights.
Duties at this point with the website includes event/meeting marketing, posting pdf’s of past presentations. We could do more in terms of content but it takes time.
Per Dave Clyborne, Web Technologies Director for CSA Southwest Chapter:
- Ability to design Web sites with minimal or no supervision
- Attention to detail
- Ability to code CSS and HTML
- Understanding code, logic and being able to understand how to maintain and develop new application where needed.
- Ability to maintain a website and access Web resources to complete that function.
- Ability to research and find resources to enhance and improve the chapters site within the guidelines of CSA Global.
- Communication with board and chapter members on continued improvement and issues found on the site.
- Time management in getting the website updated in a timely manner.
- Continued education in new advances and functions available for WordPress site development.
- Understanding of CMS (content management system) topics and how to use them. WordPress is both a website development tool and content management system.
- Ability to maintain the billing and payment functions on the site.
- Ability to maintain and evolve security of the site and access to it for members (internal and external).
- WordPress updates on a regular basis. There is usually a button that administrators can use to update/check for updates. This may be disabled from global on their supplied template.
- There are a couple of good YouTube videos that help you build a site (you just have to remember it is in a template and there are limits as to what you can modify). One I've used is from Taylor Moore.
- Another help is WordPress for Dummies. Bookstores like Barnes and Noble have it for about $23. Yes, you have to actually read it!
|Administering a CSA Chapter Web Site||Download (.docx)|