Obama Makes Presidential Innovation Fellows Program Permanent

aug innovationPresident Barack Obama just signed an executive order that makes the Presidential Innovation Fellows program a permanent part of the federal government. Established by the White House in 2012, the program brings entrepreneurs and other innovators to Washington DC for a 12-month stint to work alongside government employees in improving federal programs.


“My hope is this continues to encourage a culture of public service among our innovators, and tech entrepreneurs, so that we can keep building a government that’s as modern, as innovative, and as engaging as our incredible tech sector is," said President Obama in a video statement released by the White House.


The signing of the executive order coincides with the announcement of six new Presidential Innovation Fellows that will begin serving in the coming weeks.

  • Adam Bonnifield, from Washington, DC, a digital strategist, developer and the co-founder of Spinnakr, a platform for making big data accessible and actionable.
  • Ross Dakin, from Palo Alto, CA, a software engineer who has created novel financial services at Upstart Network, cyber threat intelligence tools at BrightPoint Security, and same-day infrastructure at Deliv.
  • Luke Keller, from Brooklyn, NY, a product designer and strategist who developed products to help educators introduce character development to their classrooms at Character Lab.
  • Kate McCall-Kiley, from Kensington, MD, a designer specializing in human-centered design and social change who previously served on innovation teams at Booz Allen Hamilton, Capital One, and Design for America.
  • Josh Patterson, from Columbia, SC, a data scientist and economist who most recently lead the development of big data systems at Accenture Technology Labs.
  • Alexandra Pelletier, from Jamaica Plain, MA, a product manager who most recently served as the digital lead for the Innovation Acceleration Program at Boston Children’s Hospital.


The latest class brings the total number of fellows to 96. Applications are open for those wishing to serve a fellowship.


Photo Credit: Flickr

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