Facebook engineer tapped as head of White House IT

David Recordon, Facebook's engineering director, becomes the person to be plucked from Silicon Valley for work in the federal government.

The federal government’s raid of top Silicon Valley talent continues: The White House announced Thursday that David Recordon, previously Facebook’s engineering director, has been appointed as director of White House information technology.

The announcement also came with a presidential memorandum creating the position, saying the director will be the “senior officer responsible for the information resources and information systems provided to the President, Vice President, and EOP by the Presidential Information Technology Community.”

Recordon is best known for his work in helping to develop
OpenID, which allows users to sign into websites based on their authentication on certain co-operating sites (i.e., logging into a website via a Facebook account). While at Facebook, Recordon also helped with open source, engineering education, and the technology behind the company’s human resources, video conferencing and physical security efforts.

“In our continued efforts to serve our citizens better, we’re bringing in top tech leaders to support our teams across the federal government,” said President Barack Obama
in a post on Medium announcing the position. David’s “considerable private sector experience and ability to deploy the latest collaborative and communication technologies will be a great asset to our work on behalf of the American people.”


Prior to his time at Facebook, Recordon worked on open platforms for Six Apart, a software company known for creating the Movable Type and TypePad blogging platforms. He also spent time as a software engineer for network infrastructure company VeriSign.

The hire comes as the Obama administration lines its halls with people from Silicon Valley. Over the past few months, high-ranking officials from Google (Megan Smith), VMware (Tony Scott) and LinkedIn (DJ Patil) have been named to top federal positions. The administration is also increasing its efforts with two development teams — GSA’s 18F and the U.S. Digital Service — that have helped create and modernize federal websites and customer-facing systems.

In the memorandum, President Obama also created the Executive Committee for Presidential Information Technology. The committee will advise the president, vice president and executive office on both IT strategy and execution, with tech liaisons from the Defense Department, Homeland Security Department and National Security Council.

Greg Otto

Written by Greg Otto

Greg Otto is Editor-in-Chief of CyberScoop, overseeing all editorial content for the website. Greg has led cybersecurity coverage that has won various awards, including accolades from the Society of Professional Journalists and the American Society of Business Publication Editors. Prior to joining Scoop News Group, Greg worked for the Washington Business Journal, U.S. News & World Report and WTOP Radio. He has a degree in broadcast journalism from Temple University.

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