This blog entry by Rob Cook, Commissioner of the Technology Transformation Service, was originally published on October 31st, 2016 on the GSA blog.
Some of my friends have asked what could possibly have gotten me to leave the life I love in the Bay Area and take a government job in DC. My answer is straightforward: I believe the Technology Transformation Service has an unprecedented chance to dramatically improve the way we all interact with our government.
Our citizens deserve a government that uses technology to make their lives easier and government more approachable and efficient. That’s particularly true in America, because digital technology was mostly invented here in the United States and exemplifies deeply American values such as empowerment of the individual, freedom of communication and association, and a vibrant spirit of optimism. So it seems only right that our government should be wholeheartedly embracing the best of the digital age.
TTS is built on the principles cutting-edge companies across the world thrive on, principles like agile development and user-centric design. But creating an outstanding digital-age government will take more than those principles; it will take partnerships with people who know government as well as we know technology. That’s why at first I’m mostly going to be doing a lot of listening and learning.
I’ve been fortunate in my career to know what it feels like to be part of a great team with great promise. I felt it at Pixar long before we were a household name, and I feel it now at TTS. I’m so impressed with the people here and the quality of the work they’re doing. We have a remarkable opportunity to contribute to our country and a make a profound difference in people’s lives, and I’m looking forward to doing everything I can to help.