Executive Biography

Shailaja Shankar

SVP Engineering, Security Business Group

Shailaja Shankar is the Senior Vice President, Engineering of Cisco Security Business Group (SBG). A respected and transformative leader with strong executive management skills and deep technical experience, Shailaja is responsible for engineering—including strategy execution and architecture—to fundamentally simplify the security experience.

Shailaja came to this role after holding numerous leadership positions within the security business including General Manager of the organization where she oversaw strategy, portfolio, and architecture. Shailaja was also Senior Vice President and GM of the Cloud and Networking Security business entity, where she focused on delivering the industry's most innovative solutions and leading Cisco through major technology shifts in cloud, network, and workload security through SASE, SSE, and Zero Trust. Shailaja knows how to bring a team together around a shared culture to drive the maximum results. She leads a team of experienced cybersecurity experts and accomplished engineers that deliver a world-class portfolio which offers end-users the best experience to securely access their applications and data.

Prior to joining Cisco in June 2021, Shailaja was SVP of Engineering, Enterprise at McAfee, responsible for its security and threat defense solutions across endpoint, extended detection and response, data center security, and cloud native application protection. She led this global engineering team through strategic change and was able to deliver growth at scale for all major customer segments.

In 2022, Shaila received accolades for her executive leadership within the IT industry and beyond. She was named among 10 Women Making a Difference in Cybersecurity by CRN and appointed to BorgWarner’s Board of Directors. This synergistic position leverages Shaila’s deep experience innovating technological solutions and driving strategic change in global enterprises. 

In addition to her deep technical product and portfolio development experience, Shailaja also prides herself on being a champion of diversity, mentoring next generation of technical women. She is a global advisor with How Women Lead.