“James brings more than two decades of experience in creating successful national security initiatives for the US Department of Energy,” said Brent Park, associate laboratory director of global security at ORNL. “In particular, his leadership in cybersecurity, data analytics and high-performance computing will enable him to lead the laboratory’s cybersecurity initiative for the electric grid and beyond.”
Next-generation cybersecurity for the electric grid is a multi-directorate, multi-program effort at ORNL that supports the DOE cybersecurity program for critical energy infrastructure. The initiative aims to enable electric utilities and other components of the nation’s energy supply to defend against emerging and previously unseen cyberattacks.
Peery also will help ORNL researchers draw on the lab’s distinctive capabilities to develop scientific and technological solutions aligned with national security policies and strategies.
Peery, who is a member of the US Air Force’s Scientific Advisory Board, began his career at Sandia in 1990, the year he graduated from Texas A&M University with a doctorate in nuclear engineering. In one of his first assignments at Sandia, he developed first-generation massively parallel algorithms and tools for use in high-energy physics applications in support of national security. He soon rose to be manager of computational physics and then manager of computational solid mechanics and structural dynamics.
In 2002, he accepted a position at Los Alamos, where he successfully led the lab’s advanced code and computing strategy that supported the highly successful Advanced Scientific Computing element in the National Nuclear Security Administration’s stockpile stewardship program.
In 2007, he returned to Sandia. Among his many successes over the next 10 years, he advanced the laboratories’ high-performance computing and research and development in computational sciences. He strengthened the labs’ cybersecurity portfolio and was instrumental in the creation of Sandia’s quantum information sciences program and its Counterfeit Detection Center.