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Obama Names Google's Megan Smith CTO of United States

Smith is a Silicon Valley veteran with decades of experience.
Image: Government Shutdown in Washington DC
epa03892774 The US Capitol dome is seen under a cloudless blue sky in Washington, DC, USA, 02 October 2013. US President Barack Obama canceled his trip to the Philippines facing a crisis at home after a budget deadlock in the House of Representatives this week led to a shutdown of federally funded agencies starting 01 October. EPA/SHAWN THEWSHAWN THEW / EPA

Yes, even the United States itself has a chief technology officer — and Google's Megan Smith is now taking on the role. The Obama administration announced Smith's appointment to the U.S. CTO role on Thursday.

Smith is a Silicon Valley veteran with decades of experience. She's currently a vice president at Google X — the search giant's wacky-project arm that developed Google Glass and a self-driving car prototype — served as the company's vice president of new business development for nine years prior. The new deputy U.S. CTO is Alexander Macgillivray, former general counsel at Twitter, who will focus mainly on policy.

President Barack Obama created the U.S. CTO position during his first full day in office, and the person in the role meant to "lead administration-wide efforts to unleash the power of technology, data, and innovation to help meet our nation’s goals and the needs of our citizens." The administration announced last week that previous U.S. CTO Todd Park will move to an adviser role.


— Julianne Pepitone