David Ward

SVP, CTO of Engineering & Chief Architect

Dave Ward is Chief Technology Officer of Engineering, Chief Architect and a Senior Vice President at Cisco’s Networking and Security Business, driving innovations across Cisco’s platform, product and solution portfolio. As head of Cisco’s Chief Technology and Architecture Office, Dave leads Cisco’s core innovation programs, unifying and advancing strategic co-innovation partnerships and programs with internal business units and external customers, partners, government, developers, academia, standards and open-source groups.

These co-innovation programs continuously reinvent and enhance the capabilities of the Internet by creating new offerings and technologies inside and outside Cisco’s traditional product portfolio. He and his engineering teams have built numerous hardware and software products, including cloud networking and security products, 5G Cloud Networking, and IoT-based solutions for smart cities, healthcare, media and entertainment. Dave also leads architectural governance, technology strategy and development, and university research.

A network architecture leader recognized for advancing the capabilities of the Internet the past two and a half decades, Dave joined Cisco in 1999 when the company acquired the Internet Engineering Group. He was also a Juniper Fellow working on the operating system and next-generation routing systems, including ASICS, Optics, and network APIs and SDN.

Dave holds hundreds of patents. His pioneering advances and industry leadership around Software Defined Networks (SDN), Cloud Networking, and Network Function Virtualization has led to the formation and progress of numerous open-source, networking, and standards organizations. For example, he has been the Routing Area Director at the Internet Engineering Task Force and Chair of four of its Working Groups: IS-IS, HIP, BFD and Softwires. He has also worked with the ITU-IT, and several Open Source consortia, as well as serves on the Boards of the Alliance for Telecommunications Industry Solutions, Advanced Imaging Society, Linux Foundation Network, ITU Telecommunication Standardization Sector, Open Networking Foundation, Connected Conservation Foundation, and Wild Animal Technology Systems.

An avid outdoorsman and community participant, Dave leads Cisco’s wildlife protection initiatives, and is a co-captain in his local volunteer fire department. He also has a small vineyard in the Santa Cruz, California mountains and an heirloom tomato farm along the St. Croix River in Somerset, Wisconsin.

Dave graduated from Syracuse University, and earned graduate degrees from the University of Minnesota.

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