Deal: "Hull McKnight Building will serve as the birthplace of a new future for our state”

July 11, 2018

The following release was first published on Governor Nathan Deal's website.

Governor Nathan Deal yesterday attended the opening of the Hull McKnight Building at the Georgia Cyber Center, a first-of-its-kind collaborative cybersecurity center located in Augusta. The $100 million Georgia Cyber Center is the single largest investment in a cybersecurity facility by a state government to date, with the aim of strengthening the state of Georgia’s position as a national leader in cybersecurity.

“Georgia is now the nation’s cybersecurity capital, and the Georgia Cyber Center’s Hull McKnight Building will serve as the birthplace of a new future for our state,” said Deal. “We know that there are very clear and present vulnerabilities when it comes to the cybersecurity of individuals, businesses and critical public organizations. Today, there are roughly 300,000 unfilled cybersecurity jobs in this country, with expected growth of 20 percent in this sector in the next decade alone. As cybercriminals constantly evolve their tactics, we have to evolve constantly as well to remain one step ahead of them. 

“I appreciate the efforts of our federal, state, local and private-sector partners who have played a role in the establishment of the Georgia Cyber Center, a resource unlike any other in the nation. By investing in cybersecurity resources to remain on the forefront of one of the most pressing issues of our time, we are working to make Georgia not only the No. 1 state in which to do business, but also the safest and most secure state for business.”

The Georgia Cyber Center is a public-private collaboration that includes the University System of Georgia’s (USG) research institutions, the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG), Augusta University, Augusta Technical College, the City of Augusta, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation (GBI), the Georgia Department of Defense and other state, federal and private sector partners. These entities work together to strengthen cyber defenses and combat the growing number and complexity of cyberattacks, while also meeting the increasing need for cybersecurity talent in the workforce.

There are expected to be 3.5 million unfilled cybersecurity jobs worldwide by 2021. The Georgia Cyber Center will provide 21st-century workforce training through certificate programs and undergraduate- and graduate-level degree programs.

About the Hull McKnight Building 

  • The Georgia Cyber Range will be available to students, industry and government professionals for education and training, product development, offensive and defensive competition and more. 
  • The GBI’s newly created Cyber Crime Unit will be housed in the building, allowing law enforcement professionals throughout the state to access the GBI’s expertise in digital forensics.
  • Augusta University and Augusta Technical College will collaborate in a new partnership that places a USG school alongside a TCSG school to share classes and resources.
  • theClubhou.se, an Augusta-based nonprofit organization, will manage an incubator and accelerator program to foster innovation and entrepreneurship.
  • Demonstration space will highlight cyber research taking place at USG institutions, including basic and applied research at Augusta University.

The Hull McKnight Building is named for James M. Hull and William D. McKnight, Augusta businessmen and philanthropists who envisioned the creation of a cyber facility to enrich the local workforce and support the relocation of the U.S. Army Cyber Command to Fort Gordon. At completion, the Georgia Cyber Center will consist of two buildings totaling 332,000 square feet. Construction of the second building began in January 2018 and is expected to be completed in December 2018.