2023 OpenID Foundation Kim Cameron Award Recipients Share Their Experiences

Published October 27, 2023

In April 2023, the OpenID Foundation announced the 2023 Kim Cameron Award recipients. Today we're pleased for the award recipients to share their experiences.

The goal of the awards is to increase representation from young people’s who’ve demonstrated an interest in subjects consistent with best practices and identity standards that are secure, interoperable, and privacy preserving.



Isaac Henderson
Senior Security Researcher at the University of Stuttgart IAT/Fraunhofer IAO

 I am humbled and honored to express my gratitude to the OpenID Foundation for bestowing upon me the prestigious Kim Cameron Award. Through this, I had an opportunity to attend the Identiverse Conference in Las Vegas. In this blog post, I will take you through the highlights of my Identiverse experience and share my heartfelt appreciation for the recognition that has fueled my commitment to the world of digital identity. 

The Identiverse Conference has established itself as a global hub for identity professionals, and technologists. The core of Identiverse lies in its power-packed keynotes and parallel sessions. Visionaries from diverse industries took the stage to discuss the rapidly evolving landscape of digital identity. Each presentation was a mosaic of ideas, woven together to form a comprehensive understanding of the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. From discussions about Decentralized identity, secured authentication, and Zero Trust Architectures to the exploration of advancements in AI-driven security solutions, the keynotes painted a vivid picture of the possibilities awaiting us. And notably, deep dive sessions on Passkeys, Microsoft EntraID, and SPIFFE-based distributed workload for Zero Trust Architectures, Open ID sessions on OIX and GAIN were thought-provoking. These insights were not only intellectually stimulating but also profoundly impactful in shaping my perspective on the future of identity. Due to the many interesting sessions offered parallelly sometimes it was even tough to decide which one to attend. Also, I was able to witness how ideas originated in Identiverse sessions and later turned into standards in identity space. 

The expo floor at Identiverse resembled a technological theme park. Booths showcased an array of cutting-edge solutions, each aiming to redefine how we perceive and manage digital identity. From secured authentication solutions, and passkey implementations to decentralized identity platforms, the expo was a testament to the relentless innovation in the identity space. 

The Kim Cameron Award paved the way to grow my knowledge in identity space and also allowed me to connect with a community of identity professionals. And also enabled me to meet OpenID Foundation members and also get to know the different working groups in person. This further encourages me to actively participate in the Foundation’s work and contribute to different Open-Source/ R&D initiatives in the identity space. 


Rachelle Sellung
Senior Scientist Researcher in the Identity Management Competence Team at Fraunhofer IAO

After winning the Kim Cameron Award this year, I had the honor to join and present my work at the EIC 2023 this year. It was a great opportunity to present my work on User Experience Best and Worst Practices for Digital Wallets. I was pleasantly surprised at how many people were interested in hearing my talk. I received an overwhelming amount of positive and constructive feedback. It was valuable to receive this quality feedback from such a wide range of experts in the field of identity. In addition, I had the opportunity to reconnect and build new connections in this space of identity.

From those connections, I am working with OIX in the Global Interoperability working group and will have the opportunity to present at their IdentityTrust Conference 2023- Building Trust in Identity Event on the 28th of September.  In addition, I was able have some interesting and rewarding conversations with the Women in Identity group and am finding more ways to be more involved. 

Amir Sharif
Researcher in the Security & Trust Research Unit of the Cybersecurity Center of Fondazione Bruno Kessler

When I learned that I had been chosen to be awarded the prestigious Kim Cameron Award from the OpenID Foundation, I felt a mixture of gratitude, excitement, and humility. Although I never met Kim Cameron in person, his impact and influence in the area of digital identification were well-known. The honor of being associated with his name was genuinely beyond words.

My digital identity path began with a strong interest in identity management protocols, which led me to become immersed in its subtle nuances. Over the course of more than 5 years, my passion prompted me to investigate the finer points of identity protocols with a focus on OAuth and OpenID Connect Standards, honing in on the design and security analysis of these solutions.

Stepping into the world of European Identity and Cloud Conference (EIC) 2023, facilitated by the Kim Cameron Award, was a transformative experience. The event brings together some of the brightest minds and industry experts in the field of Digital Identity and Cybersecurity. Throughout the event, I had the opportunity to attend several thought-provoking sessions and participate in enlightening discussions. Engaging with the élite of digital identity, I witnessed the pivotal shift towards a user-centric approach, ripe for exponential growth under the stimuli arriving from different perspectives including those of initiatives and foundations, such as the Open Wallet Foundation and the Kantara initiative. 

One of my highlights was the session I presented with Giada Sciarretta and Francesco Antonio Marino about the “Past, Present, and Future of the Italian Digital Identity Ecosystem”. It is the output of a fantastic collaboration between the Center for Cybersecurity of Fondazione Bruno Kessler - FBK and the Italian Government Printing Office and Mint.  At the time of writing, we are working on the Italian Technical Specification for Verifiable Credential Issuance and Presentation in the context of the European Digital Identity Wallet.  This is exciting and there is still much to do in this fascinating journey.

Perhaps the most essential effect of attending EIC is the ability to physically reach out to many like-minded persons outside of academia who are interested in the difficulties of security and privacy in IAM. It left me not only with a bounty of fresh insights, new relationships, and a renewed feeling of purpose but also inspired me to contribute even more to the development of digital identity. I am grateful to the OpenID Foundation for this fantastic opportunity and forward to working with the identity community.

Charlie Smith
Doctoral Student at the Oxford Internet Institute

Attending Identiverse has been hugely beneficial for my research. As a political philosopher studying digital identity, a vital part of the job involves ensuring that my theorising remains grounded in the practical reality of our industry. By far the best way to do this is attending events like Identiverse—but without the OIDF’s support I would never have been able to fly to Las Vegas from the UK for a conference. I am therefore deeply grateful to the Foundation for its generous funding and mentorship via the Kim Cameron Award. Without the OIDF I would simply not have been able to broaden my network beyond the European context as effectively. The Award has added massive value to my doctoral degree.

This year I met many experts I’d only ever interviewed virtually before, allowing me to put faces to names and form far more meaningful connections. This has already resulted in several useful collaborations that will massively benefit my research and generate public value. Additionally, the access that Award winners get as a result of their association with the OIDF has opened numerous new doors to me. I hope these connections will only deepen throughout my career. Finally, the educational content of the conference has been essential for remaining up to date on developing industry trends and expert knowledge. Overall, I would encourage any academic interested in identity to make use of this fabulous resource.


The Foundation also thanks our conference partners, the European Identity and Cloud Conference (EIC) and Identiverse, as award recipients receive complimentary access to these important industry events as part of their award. Awardees will participate in Foundation events at the respective conferences as well as introduced to the identity domain experts and industry leaders at the conferences while being welcomed by our colleagues in other industry organizations.