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White House Hires Former Twitter VP as Chief Digital Officer

Jason Goldman will serve as the White House's first CDO.

President Barack Obama’s Silicon Valley courtship continues, this time with the hire of Jason Goldman as the White House’s chief digital officer -- a new position at in the federal government.

Goldman will provide oversight of the White House’s Office of Digital Strategy and bolster the president’s digital outreach campaign, according to a White House statement. The digital role was partially filled by Dan Pfeiffer, a presidential adviser, who recently exited the position.

“Goldman brings new energy and coveted expertise as someone who’s helped shape the digital age,” Obama said.

Before serving the president, Goldman worked in the heart of Silicon Valley at companies like Google, Medium and Twitter, where he coordinated product services and supervised design, research, marketing and managerial staff directly with co-founders Ev Williams and Biz Stone.

Now under the White House direction of Denis McDonough, Obama’s chief of staff, it’s likely Goldman will promote the president’s digital agenda, which includes a campaign to support digital education through the White House’s TechHire initiative, backing open data efforts in federal agencies, and fostering additional Silicon Valley recruitment for consulting organizations like the U.S. Digital Services and technical development groups such as 18F, among other things.

According to the White House website, much of the duties that the Office of Digital Strategy (ODS) coordinates are content based. Blogs, social media, website design, graphics and other material are key elements to office. As Obama finishes his last term in office, which concludes on Jan. 20, 2017, the president said that Goldman will continue to use the ODS to bullhorn his past and current endeavors for U.S. technology.

The move will be the second tech position created since David Recordon, a former Facebook engineer, was hired as the White House's first director of IT on March 19.

“Our mission is to use every single tool available to ensure that all Americans can contribute to and benefit from our American resurgence,” Obama said.

Goldman’s announcement was made alongside the hire of Shailagh Murray, a former Washington Post and Wall Street Journal reporter, who takes on Pfeiffer’s other duties as a key political adviser to the president.

Murray previously served as an adviser to Vice President Joe Biden’s deputy chief of staff and communications director.

Jason Shueh is a former staff writer for Government Technology magazine.