Ronald “Ron” Marks III is a nonresident senior fellow in the Atlantic Council’s Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security. Marks is also president of ZPN National Security and Cyber Strategies, where he advises public and private entities on issues of national security and provide problem-solving strategies. A thirty-eight-year veteran of the US national security community, Marks served in the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and on Capitol Hill. In the CIA, Marks was a clandestine service officer, special assistant to the assistant director of central intelligence for military affairs, and a Senate liaison for five directors of central intelligence. He went on to serve on Capitol Hill as intelligence counsel to former Senate Majority Leaders Robert Dole and Trent Lott.
Appointed a 2021 visiting professor of cyber and intelligence at George Mason University’s Schar School of Policy and Government, Marks designed a unique course devoted to the crucial intersection of national security policy and advancing technology. In spring 2020, Marks was selected as a Dole Fellow at the University of Kansas’s Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics, where he conducted seminars focused on twenty-first-century information challenges entitled “Spying in the Cyber Age.” A nationally recognized lecturer on intelligence and cyber issues, Marks also serves as an instructor at Johns Hopkins University’s global security studies program. From 2016 to 2019, Marks served as chairman of the intelligence and cyber program at the Daniel Morgan Graduate School of National Security (now Texas A&M) in Washington, DC, where he was invited by the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation to build an intelligence and cyber master’s program.
After twenty years of successfully managing and owning both information- and cyber-related businesses, Marks now sits on several corporate defense, intelligence, and think-tank boards, including the Global Techno-Politics Forum and the Silicon Valley-based Informatica Federal Operations Corp. In addition to national security journal articles and media appearances, Marks is author of the book Spying in America in the Post 9/11 World: Domestic Threat and the Need for Change—focusing on the challenges and legalities of US domestic intelligence collection in the cyber age.