White House poaches top Google exec for CTO role

Google and Twitter execs will join Obama's administration

The US government has nabbed a top Google executive to lead its work on the use of technology in the nation, as well as hiring a former Twitter legal top dog.

Megan Smith will become the chief technology officer for the White House in a role that will see her work with the government to try and ensure the nation embraces the power of technology.

Smith joins from her role at Google as the vice president of Google[x], the firm’s ‘moonshot’ research lab. President Barack Obama said her long career in the tech sector made her an ideal appointment.

“Smith has spent her career leading talented teams and taking cutting-edge technology and innovation initiatives from concept to design to deployment,” he said.

“I am confident that in her new role as America’s chief technology officer, she will put her long record of leadership and exceptional skills to work on behalf of the American people.”

Google had not responded to a request for comment on Smith’s departure when contacted by V3.

The White House also confirmed the appointment of Alexander Macgillivray as deputy CTO. Macgillivray was previously general counsel and head of public policy at Twitter, where he has served from 2009 to 2013.

The appointments are a notable coup for the White House in order to beef up its IT ranks, and follow on from a recent announcement by the UK government that it had bolstered its digital skills with more than 100 new hires. This included enticing top staff from private-sector firms including Electrolux, Vodafone and Credit Suisse.

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5 September 2014 | 11:36 am – Source: v3.co.uk

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