Russell Opland is an independent global privacy business expert with over 15 years of senior leadership experience in privacy and data protection in the USA and South Africa.
Opland is currently a candidate for a PhD degree in the Olive Schreiner School of Law at the University of the Witwatersrand, where his thesis is entitled Harmonisation of South African market conduct and privacy laws in the financial services sector: a framework for regulators and practitioners.
He hails from Cape Town, and attended university in the USA where he received his bachelor’s degree in Cognitive Science from Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, New York. Opland supervised programmers for one of the world’s leading healthcare information systems companies, Cerner Corporation, and became qualified and worked as a paramedic. He obtained his Master’s degree in Public Health from Saint Louis University in St. Louis, Missouri.
Opland then successfully led the Y2K programme for one of the USA’s most prestigious healthcare organisations, the University of Pennsylvania Health System (UPHS). He served the University of Pennsylvania and UPHS as an Information Systems Auditor, before becoming UPHS’s first Chief Privacy and Information Security Officer, where he designed and implemented the privacy and information security programmes. Opland then led the information security programme for Endo Pharmaceuticals. As a result of his UPHS experience, Opland was recruited as the first System wide
Privacy Officer and HIPAA Privacy and Security Officer for the University of California system, comprising 10 university campuses, 5 academic medical centers, and the UC Office of the President. He reported directly to the Board of the USA’s largest public university system, completely revised all the HIPAA policies, and developed and implemented the first system-wide incident response plan.
Opland is an accredited member of the Compliance Institute of South Africa, and earned their Compliance Practitioner (CPrac) designation. He is scheduled to sit for the first Board exams for Compliance Professional (CProf) designation later in 2017. He is a Certified Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US), and a Certified Information Security Manager (CISM