Google executive Megan Smith has been named as the White House’s new chief technology officer, after having been involved in the inner workings of Silicon Valley, California, for a number of decades.
Having recently been the vice-president of Google’s X division, responsible for its most advanced technology research and creation, Smith will be joined by Twitter’s former general counsel, Alexander Macgillivray, as her deputy, according to CNet.
The US government created the CTO position for the first time after President Barack Obama first entered the White House as president in 2009. Only two people have held the CTO post until now.
Since graduating from MIT as a mechanical engineer, Smith has been involved in encouraging more women into engineering roles in the US through the Women Techmakers programme, as well as being CEO of PlanetOut, the largest online community for LGBT people.
Writing on the White House blog, the president’s scientific adviser, John P Holdren, elaborated on the role Smith will play within the government.
“As US CTO, Smith will guide the administration’s information-technology policy and initiatives, 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.”
One of Smith’s former bosses at Google, Sergey Brin, said told CNet Smith has inspired so many people through her commitment to inclusion and innovation.
“We’ll miss her at Google X and are excited to see what the future holds for her in Washington.”
Women Invent Tomorrow is Silicon Republic’s campaign to champion the role of women in science, technology, engineering and maths. It has been running since March 2013, and is kindly supported by Accenture Ireland, Intel, the Irish Research Council, ESB, Twitter, CoderDojo and Science Foundation Ireland.