President Obama Picks Aneesh Chopra For CTO

By  Susan Nunziata — April 20, 2009

President Barack Obama formally announced his nominee for the position of Chief Technology Officer of the USA On April 18, 2009.

The nominee, Aneesh Chopra, is the Secretary of Technology for the state of Virginia and was previously the Managing Director of Advisory Board Co., Washington, D.C.-based research and consulting firm serving hospitals, health systems and universities.

Earlier this year, President Obama nominated Vivek Kundra to be the nation's Chief Information Officer. According to this article in The Washington Post, the CTO may focus more on overall technology policy while the CIO will handle day-to-day spending an operations within agency projects. 

Tech blogger Tim O'Reilly lauds the choice, noting, among other efforts, Chopra's education initiatives in Virginia. These include a program to share of public school educational content in a dedicated area of iTunes, and a call for developers to create mobile applications for the iPhone designed to help students learn math.

Trade associations and industry lobbying groups lauded the choice. The Consumer Electronics Assn. was among the industry trade groups to applaud the news. "CEA views this position as critical as it allows one individual responsibility across government agencies on key technology issues," said Gary Shapiro, President/CEO of the CEA in a prepared statement. "It also ensures our industry a strong voice at the Cabinet level as issues of intellectual property, immigration, trade and taxes are discussed." 

The Wall Street Journal reports that TechNet and Business Software Alliance are also among those supporting the nomination.


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