Barack Obama is conducting a raid on Silicon Valley. No, it’s not a paranoid talk radio conspiracy theory. It’s real life: The White House has been snatching up some of the tech industry’s top talent to beef up the government’s tech game. The latest to get lured to Washington? One of Facebook’s top engineers.
David Recordon, who has been an engineering director at Facebook for the last five years, will soon be anointed the first-ever Director of Information Technology for the White House, reports Yahoo Tech.
In his new role, Recordon will head up the federal government’s effort to “merge any overlapping systems and ensure that the government’s software is up-to-date and just as secure as software in the private sector,” according to Yahoo. He’ll also be keeping an eye on the security and efficiency of government-used software.
The importance of this work is not lost on the White House after the epically disastrous boondoggle known as Healthcare.gov. The bug-riddled 2013 launch of the site exposed a number of problems with how the federal government purchases, builds, and implements technology, something the Obama administration has been eager to rectify.
To help smooth things out, the White House has been enlisting the help of Silicon Valley veterans. Last year, the administration hired onetime Google engineer Mikey Dickerson to head up the newly minted U.S. Digital Service, a tech apparatus formed last summer to take the lessons of the Healthcare.gov debacle and improve the way the federal government utilizes technology. The White House has since hired talent with resumes that include such companies as Twitter, LinkedIn, eBay, and Skype.