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Cryptologic Hall of Honor

The Cryptologic Hall of Honor was created in 1999 to pay special tribute to the pioneers and heroes who rendered distinguished service to American cryptology.

The standards are high for induction into this great hall. The individuals honored were innovators over their entire careers or made major contributions to the structure and processes of American cryptology. The men and women who have been inducted to the Cryptologic Hall of Honor are all greats in the once silent world of cryptology.

In the early days of America's cryptologic effort, many of the "giants" did both Signals Intelligence and Information Assurance. They made important contributions to both offensive and defensive cryptology. As such, they were among the first inducted into the Cryptologic Hall of Honor. 

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Lester K. Myers, 2020 Hall of Honor inductee
Lester K. Myers
By | Dec. 15, 2020
About Lester K. Myers, former NSA Senior Language Analyst, mentor, and 2020 Hall of Honor inductee.

Dr. Whitfield Diffie, 2020 Hall of Honor inductee
Dr. Whitfield Diffie
By | Dec. 15, 2020
About Dr. Whitfield Diffie, computer security pioneer and 2020 Hall of Honor inductee.

Barbara A. McNamara, 2020 Hall of Honor inductee
Barbara A. McNamara
By | Dec. 15, 2020
About Barbara A. McNamara, former NSA Executive Assistant to the Director, former NSA representative to the Department of Defense, former Deputy Director NSA, and 2020 Hall of Honor inductee.

Dr. David Kahn, 2020 Hall of Honor inductee
Dr. David Kahn
By | Dec. 15, 2020
About Dr. David Kahn, Journalist, Author, former NSA Scholar-in-Residence, and 2020 Hall of Honor inductee.

George R. Cotter 2020 Hall of Honor inductee
George R. Cotter
By | Dec. 15, 2020
About George R. Cotter, former NSA Chief of Staff, NSA Chief Scientist, and 2020 Hall of Honor inductee.

Walter Deeley

2014 Hall of Honor Inductee

Walter Deeley served in the Korean War and joined NSA in 1952. He quickly became known for his skill at crisis management.

Mr. Deeley became Chief of the Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) Operations Center in 1969, a predecessor to today's National Security Operations Center. Under his leadership, the Center adopted new concepts to facilitate near-real-time reporting, significantly improving crisis reporting. He also was instrumental in establishing the Daily SIGINT Summary, which had a major impact on intelligence analysis. As Deputy Director for Programs and Resources, he also reorganized NSA SIGINT operations after the Vietnam War.

As Deputy Director of Communications Security in the early 1980s, Mr. Deeley pushed the development and deployment of the STU-III secure telephone, which has been called the most significant improvement to the security of government voice communications in fifty years. He perceived the need for a new approach, and deployed an affordable and effective telephone security system within two years.

Also in the 1980s, as the U.S. learned the Soviets had bugged office equipment in the U.S. embassy in Moscow, Mr. Deeley managed a program (codenamed PROJECT GUNMAN) to discover the bugs and implantation methods. His skillful handling of the project led NSA into an entirely new area of technological defense of the country.

Walter Deeley was known as a strong-willed manager who pushed his subordinates hard to get results. While a tough taskmaster, the technical advances and mission achievements he led made the United States more secure.