ChIPs is delighted to announce the 2016 ChIPs Hall of Fame honoree — Megan Smith, United States Chief Technology Officer in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. Megan will be inducted into the ChIPs Hall of Fame on September 14th. We continue to be inspired by Megan’s focus on how technology, data and innovation can advance the future of our nation along with her advocacy for women in STEM fields, and we are thrilled for the opportunity to recognize her contributions.

ChIPs created the Hall of Fame award in 2013 to recognize individuals who have contributed significantly to the area of intellectual property and innovation and shown a demonstrated commitment to our mission of advancing women in technology, law and regulatory policy, increasing diversity and inclusion in these fields, and accelerating the progress of innovation that benefits our society. We invite you to learn more about past Hall of Fame inductees, including last year’s honorees Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Professor Jane Ginsburg, by visiting our Hall of Fame page.

In September 2014, President Obama named Megan Smith the United States Chief Technology Officer (CTO) in the Office of Science and Technology Policy. In this role, she serves as an Assistant to the President. As U.S. CTO, Smith focuses on how technology policy, data and innovation can advance the future of our nation.

Megan Smith is an award-winning entrepreneur, engineer, and tech evangelist. She most recently served as a Vice President at Google, first leading New Business Development — where she managed early-stage partnerships, pilot explorations, and technology licensing across Google’s global engineering and product teams for nine years — and later serving as a VP in the leadership team at Google[x] — where she co-created the company’s “SolveForX” innovation community project as well as its “WomenTechmakers” tech-diversity initiative and worked on a range of other projects. During her tenure she led the company’s acquisitions of major platforms such as Google Earth, Google Maps, and Picasa, and also served as GM of Google.org during its engineering transition, adding Google Crisis Response, Google for Nonprofits, and Earth Outreach/Engine, and increased employee engagement.

Megan previously served as CEO of PlanetOut, a leading LGBT online community in the early days of the web, where the team broke through many barriers and partnered closely with AOL, Yahoo!, MSN, and other major web players. Megan was part of designing early smartphone technologies at General Magic and worked on multimedia products at Apple Japan.

Megan Smith, US CTO (Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy; courtesy of the Office of Science and Technology Policy)

Over the years, Megan has contributed to a wide range of engineering projects, including an award-winning bicycle lock, space station construction program, and solar cookstoves. She was a member of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) student team that designed, built, and raced a solar car 2,000 miles across the Australian outback.

Megan has served on the boards of MIT, MIT Media Lab, MIT Technology Review, and Vital Voices; as a member of the USAID Advisory Committee on Voluntary Foreign Aid; and as an advisor to the Joan Ganz Cooney Center and the Malala Fund, which she co-founded. She holds a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from MIT, where she completed her master’s thesis work at the MIT Media Lab.

Megan will be inducted into the Hall of Fame at a dinner preceding the fifth annual ChIPs Women in Tech, Law and Policy Global Summit, an event that brings together hundreds of women from a wide array of backgrounds to advance the progress of innovation, leadership and equality.  

Congratulations, Megan, and thank you for all you do!