On Tuesday, September 25, the White House will welcome 13 Local Innovation Champions of Change who have committed themselves to creating a more open and innovative government through entrepreneurship. Whether making local government information and public data more accessible; creating local environments to encourage and support entrepreneurs; or developing workforce programs to provide residents with skills for the high-tech economy, these champions of change work tirelessly to build a better future for the citizens they serve, create jobs in their community, and ensure more efficient and effective government.
As a result of their efforts, citizens across the country have access to a more transparent government, more opportunities for participation in the activities of their city or county, and tools that catalyze new types of collaboration between the public, private, non-profit, and citizen sectors of the local community.
“I am constantly inspired by the hard work of the women and men who serve their country by working in government,” said Todd Park, Assistant to the President and U.S. Chief Technology Government Officer. “Entrepreneurs at the local and state level are leading the way with so many innovative solutions to some of the most vexing problems facing America today. As I work to make the President’s innovation agenda a reality, I look forward to even more projects such as the ones honored today, so we can truly out innovate the rest of the world.”
These leaders showcase the amazing movement of innovation in government across America. In addition to celebrating success, the Champions of Change event provides a great opportunity to share innovative city government products, services, and business models with other cities and discuss how to scale these innovations to others, challenging all cities across the nation to similar levels of improvement.
The Champions of Change program was created as a part of President Obama’s Winning the Future initiative. Each week, a different sector is highlighted and groups of Champions, ranging from educators to entrepreneurs to community leaders, are recognized for the work they are doing to serve and strengthen their communities.
Michele Hovet is currently a Deputy City Manager for the City of Arvada, Colorado. She also was the Chief Information Officer for Arvada for over 17 years. She is a board member for OpenColorado.org and co-founder of Digital Distance Education Services of Colorado. She works with her local government peers in Colorado to collaborate on shared services and shared software, data transparency efforts by hosting two CityCamps and pushes for getting arts back in the classroom.