To show up as a womxn in the world means that you bear the weight of proving yourself beyond the glass ceiling. To show up as a womxn of color means that you represent your race and culture wherever you go. For Camille Stewart, the journey to becoming an attorney and advocate, as well as a strategist in the cyber and technology world, is one where womxn of color are few and far between. But Camille continues to go against the grain and set herself apart.
A Jamaican-American womxn, Camille was born and raised in Ohio to two Jamaican-American immigrants. For her, being the child of immigrants turned citizens “has blessed me with a deep appreciation for this nation but also a deep appreciation for how interconnected we all are and the importance of recognizing that in everything we do. It underpins our greatest asset, the richness of our nation’s diversity.”
Growing up with two sisters and being a part of a very large close-knit extended-family, Camille found that her family was not a place of support, but of inspiration. “God and my family. I was raised to live in service of others and improve the human condition globally. I work hard to protect and empower people.”
To fulfill her dreams, Camille first went to Miami University (Oxford, OH) and earned her Bachelor of Science in Business with a Political Analysis Minor. Later, Camille went to earn her Juris Doctor at American University Washington College of Law (Washington, DC) where she was the President of the Business Law Society, an active member of the Black Law Students Association, and on the Journal of Gender, Social Policy, & the Law. Camille has always exhibited a hardworking and go-getter attitude, while always being kind and helpful to those around her. She not only sought to achieve for herself, but also was a mentor to many and assisted them in achieving their goals.
Today, Camille is a cybersecurity advocate and strategist working to improve our national security and individual security. She has combined her intellectual interest in complex problems with her passion for people and the law to create a career where she solves complex problems that impact our lives every day. At Google, Camille advocates for the security and privacy of its users. Over the years, Camille has also done this work through research and across government industry.
How is it being a womxn of color in this field? Camille says, “Being a Black woman in cybersecurity is simultaneously tough and empowering. I am often the only Black woman, the only woman of color, one of the only women, and one of a few people of color. That is tough because you feel othered, ignored, and are navigating an industry not built for you. However, that is also one of my greatest strengths. Bringing my lived experiences to bear on this work allows me to spot vulnerabilities and threats others cannot, as well as innovate on new solutions, means of communications, etc.”
Undoubtedly, Camille has faced obstacles and adversities. She notes that among them are being “undervalued, underpaid, overworked, attempts to make me be or assumptions that I am the admin, physically being closed out of conversations, being left out of meetings directly relevant to my work, and the heavy expectation that the bar for my advancement is much higher than that of others are just a few.” Despite these challenges, Camille continues to try to crack the glass ceiling above her. She does so by working campaigns like #ShareTheMicINCyber and the Diversity in National Security Network, an organization that she co-founded.
Even the strongest womxn still needs inspiration, yet Camille persists. “I know that the work I’m doing is greater than me. My work will help the world, protect the nation, and empower individuals by making these issues relatable. My presence will ensure the unique threats to and needs of diverse communities aren’t lost in the work, and will make room for others to work in this space.” Camille encourages more womxn of color to follow in her footsteps and forge their own path. “Go for it! Recognize that bringing your whole self to bear while doing this work will be your greatest asset. Just make sure you have the support system you need to recharge.”
Camille Stewart. – Attorney. Strategist. Advocate. Technophile. A force to be reckoned with. A womxn of color on the move. We honor your example and innovation.
By Brittany Gail Thomas, Esq. (BGT)
Director of Communications