Last updated at Tue, 26 Sep 2017 14:03:35 GMT

Empowerment. It was the theme for this year's UNITED Summit and each talk, training, intensive and networking break gave attendees the chance to learn about the challenges and opportunities that impact professionals to help drive their security program forward. And that feeling of empowerment was truly felt in the closing keynote from Chris Nickerson, CEO of Lares.

Through colorful analogy, Chris explained the difference between and power behind choosing versus deciding. As he explained, we are often bullied by our data set and feel forced to decide, ultimately being robbed of the freedom of choice. However, we don't have to look at things that way – rather we can look at our data, understand our options and choose the right course of action as well as how we feel about that course of action - that is total freedom.  Chris also reminded us all that the purpose of the powerful is to give power to the powerless. As defenders, we have the power to help others to protect themselves; we have the power to help our organizations understand the risks we face and our choices for action.  In his concluding thoughts, Chris encouraged everyone to realize that “the rain is just the rain” – we can choose to be angry at the rain or we can embrace it, and choose to remain positive and move forward.

Here are a few tweets highlighting this impactful and empowering final UNITED session:

@indi303 #UNITEDsummit closing keynote on Empowerment, & Choosing vs. Deciding. #ItsRainingDealWithIt

— InternMike (@InternMike) November 3, 2016

> Great closing keynote of [#UNITEDSummit]( by [@indi303]( [@rapid7]( "No longer can we play silos" []( > > — Katie Moussouris (@k8em0) [November 3, 2016](

> The purpose of the powerful is to give power to the powerless! [@indi303]( [#UNITEDSummit]( ....a fitting end to a great conference. []( > > — Amanda Nickerson (@mrsanickerson) [November 3, 2016](