Former Microsoft executive Steven VanRoekel has been confirmed as the next chief information officer (CIO) of the US government by president Barack Obama.
VanRoekel spent 15 years at Microsoft in a number of roles, and in his new position will be charged with reducing federal IT spending to help the government balance its books during the financial crisis.
The White House is already using cloud technology, and has shut hundreds of duplicate datacentres as part of this strategy, and Jack Lew, government director of the Office of Management and Budget, said that VanRoekel will continue this work.
"Steve is the right person to continue our efforts to make the government more efficient and more responsive to the American people," Lew said on The White House Blog.
"Under his leadership I am confident that we will continue to build on the remarkable gains we have made in changing the way the federal government manages IT."
VanRoekel replaces Vivek Kundra, who was appointed to the role by Obama in March 2009.
Kundra announced that he would step down from the position in June, after the FBI raided his former employer, the District of Columbia. He has since been cleared of any wrongdoing and is to take up a role as a fellow at Harvard.
Lew paid tribute to Kundra, noting that the incoming CIO will build on many of his initiatives.
"Kundra has left a lasting mark on federal IT, from opening up data in new and innovative ways, to rooting out waste and duplication in IT spending, to steering the federal government towards more energy efficient and cost-effective technologies," he said.
"[In] this time of budgetary and fiscal challenges, sustaining and expanding on those efforts is more important than ever."
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