Today, TechCongress, a nonpartisan initiative dedicated to building 21st century government and developing cross-sector technology leaders, is pleased to announce its 2018 class of Congressional Innovation Fellows. This year’s class of fellows brings experience from public interest organizations, private sector companies, the military, government, and tech startups. These Congressional Innovation Fellows have deep technical expertise and will find a placement with a Member of Congress or Congressional Committee to gain firsthand knowledge about the legislative process while applying their in-depth technical experience to policy challenges. Past classes of fellows have worked with the House Ways and Means Health Subcommittee, and the House Oversight and Government Reform IT Subcommittee, Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and the Offices of Sens. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii).
“We are thrilled to be growing the Congressional Innovation Fellowship again in 2018. Over 150 individuals from academia, civil society, government, and big and small tech companies applied to join the program,” said Travis Moore, Founder and Director, TechCongress. “Technology policy cuts across every committee’s jurisdiction, and tech companies are increasingly moving into highly regulated sectors like health, finance, transportation, and energy. Our country needs leaders who can understand and bridge the complexities of government and tech.”
The 2018 Congressional Innovation Fellows are:
Bukky Adebayo, a product manager at Bedrock Analytics, a consumer packaged goods analytics company. As a product manager, she specialized in building data products. Prior to Bedrock, she managed data courses at General Assembly. She's also been a product manager at Wecyclers and Hopper Travel. Adebayo received her Bachelors in electrical and computer engineering from Olin College of Engineering.
Collin Anderson, a Washington D.C.-based researcher focused on cybersecurity and Internet freedom, with an emphasis on countries that restrict the free flow of information. Prior to the Congressional Innovation Fellowship, Anderson was a researcher at Measurement Lab, cofounder of Security without Borders, and an adviser with several organizations focused on human rights and Iran. These involvements center on how public policy can promote online expression and accountability, including regulation of the sale of surveillance technologies and sanctions programs. Anderson’s most recent work is an extensive analysis documenting how Iran uses cyber warfare to pursue its foreign policy interests and repress dissent, published through the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace .
James Gimbi, a consultant at Mandiant, a FireEye company. He performed breach investigations and guided cyber strategy for clients in government and the Global 500, spanning defense, finance, healthcare, professional services, and other industries across four continents. He produced the Security Operations Center for a top Asia-Pacific bank and reviewed the DHS National Cyber Incident Response Plan. Gimbi developed and taught security courses for federal law enforcement, conferences, and private clients. Gimbi holds a Bachelor of Science with honors from the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) in information security and forensics. At RIT, he published research on covert channels, studied politics, and worked co-ops with Mandiant, BOCES, and Cisco Systems.
Robbie Narang, a biotechnologist with expertise in the rapidly growing intersection of life science entrepreneurship, personalized medicine, and robotics. Previously, Dr. Narang held scientific and marketing roles with biotechnology startups. He was a member of a scientific team that successfully brought a biotechnology startup to acquisition in 2016, where he worked on automated systems for drug discovery. He then went on to found his own consultancy, serving in advisory roles for small, innovative teams trying to enter highly-regulated personalized/precision medicine markets. Dr. Narang holds a Ph.D. in molecular microbiology from Tufts University and a Bachelor of Science in biology from the University of New Mexico.
John A. Price, a three-time Bronze Star veteran of the U.S. Army Special Operations. Price supported the Intelligence community focusing on planning and leading small teams in high-stress environments. Price has multiple combat tours including the Middle East and Mediterranean, where he successfully managed multiple sensitive programs for the U.S. government customers totaling more than 100 million dollars. A trusted confidant for several government agencies, Price most recently worked as a consultant dealing with risk management and mitigation through developing advanced technical solutions in the most dynamic environments. Price holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Colorado, a Masters in Business Administration from the George Washington University and speaks both Russian and Farsi.
Jamie Sternlicht, a mechanical engineer who specializes in robotics. Prior to the fellowship, Jamie was a Project Manager for ULC Robotics, an international company that creates robotic solutions for the utility industry. At ULC, Sternlicht worked directly with clients to assess project requirements, and collaborated with software, electrical and mechanical engineering teams to create robotic systems solutions. Sternlicht currently lives on a modern dairy farm in upstate New York. She believes that autonomous technology solutions, such as utility inspection systems, voluntary milking systems, and driverless cars, affect positive change for the economy and enable safer and happier communities. She received her Bachelor of Science and Master of Engineering in mechanical engineering from Cornell University.
“I’ve seen firsthand the transformative impact of applying tech expertise to solving problems in government.” said Cecilia Muñoz, Vice President, Policy and Technology and Director, New America National Network. “We need more technologists at every level of government, and I’m excited to see the expertise in this year’s class of Congressional Innovation Fellows. TechCongress is playing an important role in bringing more technology professionals into Congress to work on some of today’s biggest policy challenges.”
TechCongress is incubated at New America’s Open Technology Institute (OTI) and one of several projects at OTI aimed at bridging the divide between the tech and policy communities, and building a sector of public interest technologists. The 2018 class of TechCongress fellows is supported by the Ford Foundation, the Hewlett Foundation and entrepreneur and investor Reid Hoffman.