U.S. CTO Todd Park (left) and U.S. CIO Steven VanRoeckel at the August 23 announcement of the Presidential Innovation Fellows.
Entrepreneurship received a big endorsement last week with the announcement of the inaugural class of 18 Presidential Innovation Fellows, who will spend the next six months in Washington, D.C., working on “projects aimed at supporting entrepreneurs, small businesses and the economy, while significantly improving how the Federal Government serves the American people,” according to a White House press release.
“The Presidential Innovation Fellows program leverages the ingenuity of leading problem solvers from across America together with federal innovators to tackle projects that aim to fuel job creation, save taxpayers money and improve the lives of Americans in tangible ways,” said U.S. CTO Todd Park in the release.
The fellows, who were selected from some 700 applicants, come from nonprofits, universities and the private sector, and are divided among five projects “selected because they are tough but tractable challenges whose solutions could provide immediate benefits and cost-savings to American citizens, entrepreneurs and businesses,” says the White House release.
MyGov, which Gershman will be working on, will create an “online footprint” that will make navigating the more than 1,200 websites displaying federal government information and services easier for citizens instead of people working inside the federal government.
Blue Button for America will aim to extend a service now available only to veterans, uniformed service members and people on Medicare to all citizens through the creation of apps and other software. Blue Button itself allows people to download their health and medical files, which are displayed as text files. McCall is one of the fellows working on this project.
Click here for information on all five of the Presidential Innovation Fellow projects.
In attendance at the launch of fellows program was author of The Lean Startup, Eric Ries. Baltimore’s own Sarge Salman, co-organizer of the Baltimore Lean Startup Meetup, was on hand to lead a fireside chat with Ries and U.S. CTO Park. Part one of the video from that chat is below. For the remaining parts, click here.