Obama Taps Google Executive for U.S. Chief Technology Officer Role

September 5, 2014 in News

On Thursday, the White House announced that Megan Smith will serve as the next U.S. chief technology officer, Clinical Innovation Technology reports.

In addition, Alexander Macgillivray has been named deputy U.S. CTO (Pedulli, Clinical Innovation Technology, 9/4).

Background

The announcements come after federal CTO Todd Park said he will leave the position for a federal recruiting job in California, which he will begin later this month (Romm, Politico, 9/4).

Park, who spearheaded several health IT projects, joined the Obama administration as CTO of HHS in 2009 and assumed the role of U.S. CTO in 2012 (iHealthBeat, 8/25).

Meanwhile, former Deputy U.S. CTO Nicole Wong stepped down last month after nearly a year in the position.

Details of New CTO, Deputy CTO

Smith formerly held several executive positions at Google, including:

  • Vice president of Google X — the company’s technology research and development arm; and
  • Vice president of new business development (Politico, 9/4).

In a blog post, John Holdren — assistant to the president for science and technology, co-chair of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology and director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy — ┬ásaid Smith will be responsible for “continuing the work of her predecessors to accelerate attainment of the benefits of advanced information and communications technologies across every sector of the economy and aspect of human well-being.”

Macgillivray formerly was general counsel and head of public policy at Twitter.

According to Holdren, Macgillivray’s new position will focus on:

  • Connections between big data, technology and privacy;
  • Intellectual property policy; and
  • Internet policy (Sullivan, Healthcare IT News, 9/5).
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