The former CEO of PlanetOut, Megan Smith oversaw Google's philanthropic wing for nearly a decade before taking over Google[x], a venture seeking "radical solutions" to some "really big problems." But yesterday the lesbian tech insider was selected as the United States' new chief technology officer, making her one of the highest-ranking openly gay officials in the White House (she was last listed at No. 46 on our sibling publication Out's Power List in 2013, but was not ranked on its 2014 list).
As The Washington Post reports, under Smith, the position is "expected to re-focus on being agenda-setting and forward-looking -- something of the technological equivalent of the President's Science Advisor."
In a statement, President Obama said:
"Megan has spent her career leading talented teams and taking cutting-edge technology and innovation initiatives from concept to design to deployment. I am confident that in her new role as America's Chief Technology Officer, she will put her long record of leadership and exceptional skills to work on behalf of the American people. I am grateful for her commitment to serve, and I look forward to working with her and with our new Deputy U.S. CTO, Alexander Macgillivray, in the weeks and months ahead."
Smith recently separated from her wife, Kara Swisher, whoNew York magazine recently called the the tech world's "most powerful snoop," after 15 years together. The couple have two sons together.
PlanetOut is the former owner of The Advocate, Out, and HIV Plus.