Carnegie Mellon University

Joanne Peca

Joanne Peca

Associate Professor of the Practice, Information Networking Institute

Pittsburgh Campus


Dr. Joanne C. Peca is Associate Professor of the Practice for the Information Networking Institute in the College of Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University and a core member of the CyLab faculty. She has worked in the field of information technology, security and privacy for 25+ years, in both hands-on and leadership roles.

Much of Joanne's career has been spent in the realm of higher education leadership, with a focus information technology, security and privacy. Prior to joining the INI, Joanne held a faculty appointment in the College of Information Sciences and Technology at Penn State University.  She also served as the Chief Information Officer for Penn State Altoona for a decade, capping her tenure at the college with recognition as the 2019 Pittsburgh Technology Council’s Non-Profit CIO of the Year.

Joanne is also an experienced entrepreneur. Joanne is the founder and principal of High Point Drive LLC, a consulting and coaching firm which allows her to share her expertise in information technology, security, and privacy, as well as organizational leadership and executive leadership development. Prior to that, she co-founded MediaVortex, Inc. and was an early team member at InfoRocket, Inc. (which was later acquired by AT&T).

Throughout her career, Joanne has focused on understanding the role of organizational dynamics and interpersonal relationships and their impact on the development and deployment of innovative technology solutions and services. This industry experience aligns with her research, which focuses on the intersection of organizational leadership and technology, security and privacy. In recent years, Joanne’s research has been published by IEEE and featured at the Wireless Telecommunications Symposium, and she has been an invited speaker at Yale University and the University of Pittsburgh (among others).

Joanne is a graduate of the Yale School of Management’s Global Executive Leadership Program. Additionally, she holds a doctorate in Organizational Leadership from Northeastern University, a Master of Science in Information Systems from Drexel University, a Master of Business Administration from Rider University, a Graduate Certificate in Project Management from Penn State University, and a Professional Certificate in Strategic Decision and Risk Management from Stanford University. She is currently pursuing a graduate degree in Privacy Engineering from the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University.

Joanne holds several certifications in information security (CISSP, C|CISO, C|EH) and IT service management (ITIL 4 Managing Professional, ITIL 4 Strategic Leader, ITIL v3 Expert). She also holds a certification for online teaching from Penn State University and is a Board-Certified Coach. Joanne completed her Lean Six Sigma Black Belt certification at the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth.


Global Executive Leadership Program, Yale School of Management
Ed.D. Organizational Leadership, Northeastern University
M.S. Information Systems, Drexel University
MBA, Rider University
Lean Six Sigma Black Belt, Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth
Professional Certificate - Strategic Decision and Risk Management, Stanford University
Graduate Certificate - Project Management, Penn State University


Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)
Certified Chief Information Security Officer (CCISO)
Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH)
ITIL 4 Managing Professional
ITIL 4 Strategic Leader
ITIL v3 Expert
Board Certified Coach


Areas of Interest: Technology leadership, organizational learning, information security