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Focusing on six words: Helping government do its job better

No CTO, but Team Obama a ‘director of citizen participation’

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Katie Jacobs Stanton

Katie Jacobs Stanton

UPDATED at 11:15a ET with DorobekInsider confirmation… and the interview from Federal News Radio 1500 AM’s Daily Debrief with Chris Dorobek and Amy Morris.]

No word on the Obama CTO yet, but… Peter Kafka over at Media Memo is reporting that Team Obama will soon announce weeks the appointment of has hired a Google executive to be the administration’s “director of citizen participation.” (The DorobekInsider has also confirmed the appointment.) And the person should sound familiar — Katie Jacobs Stanton has been principal of Google’s new development team and regular listeners to Federal News Radio 1500 AM’s Daily Debrief with Chris Dorobek and Amy Morris remember that we spoke with her about the Obama transition Web site change.gov’s use of Google Moderator for it’s “as a question” feature.

[UPDATE: The interview has been re-posted on FederalNewsRadio.com. You can hear our conversation here.]

Here is an excerpt from Kafka’s report:

What the job entails isn’t completely clear to me, but I gather that she plans on using Web tools to let, well, citizens participate in the Obama White House…

Per her LinkedIn bio, she’s also worked on Google Finance and Google’s Open Social initiative. And prior to joining Google (GOOG) in 2003 (which means she came on pre-IPO and is fully vested, if you’re doing the math), she was at Yahoo (YHOO) as a production manager and worked in Yahoo Finance.

Read the full post here.

This from Paid Content via the WashingtonPost.com :

Google CEO Eric Schmidt may not be interested in the new federal CTO post but a member of his team is headed to Washington, D.C.: business development exec Katie Jacobs Stanton is joining the Obama administration as “director of citizen participation,” MediaMemo reported and we have confirmed. As Peter Kafka notes, the title doesn’t clearly define what Stanton’s responsibilities will be when her new job begins in March. But given her background at Google, she worked on the search giant’s election team, on its Open Social initiative, and helped launch Google Finance in 2006. She likely will be involved in the development of online tools that help Americans get more involved with what’s going on at the White House. Stanton joined Google in 2003, early enough to be in on the IPO; she previously served as a production manager at Yahoo.

Stanton’s appointment is in line with the administration’s efforts during the campaign and transition to reach out to supporters through digital means: the weekly fireside chats via YouTube, the Twitter account, as well as the launch of Change.gov while Obama was president-elect. But Stanton and other tech-savvy new hires may find it more difficult to do their jobs effectively in the coming months, as they contend with White House technology policies that are more restrictive than participatory. (Much like Obama himself did during the struggle to keep his Blackberry).

Congratulations to Katie Jacobs Stanton — and Team Obama.

Written by cdorobek

January 30, 2009 at 8:13 AM

2 Responses

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  1. Chris:

    On January 21 the President issued an Executive Order directing

    “the Chief Technology Officer, in coordination with the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the Administrator of General Services, to coordinate the development by appropriate executive departments and agencies, within 120 days, of recommendations for an Open Government Directive, to be issued by the Director of OMB, that instructs executive departments and agencies to take specific actions implementing the principles set forth in this memorandum. The independent agencies should comply with the Open Government Directive.”

    On a close read, I believe there’s something really quite fundamental missing in the EO. Simply put, the president failed to specify transparency, citizen participation and openness in the process of creating the Open Government Directive ! On face value what we have is a closed process deciding what it might be like to have an open government.

    Are citizens to expect that Federal agencies are going to make this process transparent, participatory and open without being directed by the president ?

    How about a Wiki, a prediction market and public comment, so we can all shape the Open Government Directive ?

    Seems like Katie Jacobs Stanton wasn’t consulted on Open Government Directive.

    Charlie

    February 1, 2009 at 12:54 PM

  2. […] would be how much of that reworking is going on… and they are making appointments. Kundra, Stanton, a White House new media person… Not all of these appointments have been confirmed, […]


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