With a little help from Philly tech scenesters back in May, former Chief Administrative Officer Rebecca Rhynhart scored the Democratic Party’s nomination for the Controller’s Office, unseating incumbent Alan Butkovitz in a move that Philly Mag called a sign of the Democratic machine’s waning power.
But the job wasn’t done for Rhynhart, 43, who served as city treasurer under Mayor Michael Nutter before joining the Kenney administration: she still had to win the thing. And last night, with a whopping 82 percent of the vote, the Democratic beat out Republican nominee Michael Tomlinson and became the first woman to be elected to the Controller’s office.
Our city’s newly elected controller was introduced to the tech scene in May last year, when Chief Data Officer Tim Wisniewski and his team came directly under her watch, in a shakeup that removed a layer of bureaucracy and gave Wisniewski’s team more leeway to work on projects like the city’s website and the release of open data sets.
I'm humbled by the overwhelming support across Philadelphia and honored to serve as your next City Controller. Let's get started!
— Rebecca Rhynhart (@RRhynhart) November 8, 2017
When she became the Democratic nominee, we asked her how she planned on making tech a part of the oversight office.
“The role of the City Controller is auditing every department every year to root out fraud and increase efficiency,” Rhynhart said. “I plan to look for not just fraud but ways to modernize processes through technology. The ROI could be huge.”
As city controller, Rhynhart promised to push for the digital release of expenditure data.
“What I want to accomplish is very tied into what the tech community feels is important,” said Rhynhart. “That formed the basis of our relationship. My message to them is that I’ll be a strong partner and ally. I will be an advocate for modernization, data, and serve residents in a better way.”-30-
Philadelphia is as unequal as Colombia. Will a minimum wage boost help?
Why the Digital Literacy Alliance’s third grant round is all about the 2020 census
The Philly revenue department’s data-driven strategy to upend city bureaucracy
Why working with the University City Science Center was a game changer for 4 Philly startups
If elected, this 26-year-old scientist could bring a STEM voice to City Council
Most Philly stores can’t go cashless, new law says
Breaking: Philadelphia is restructuring its Office of Open Data and Digital Transformation
Take a peek at the opportunities popping up at PromptWorks
Sign-up for daily news updates from Technical.ly Philadelphia