recommended reading

State Taps Atlantic Media CTO to Manage Digital Diplomacy Program

Sarah Scully/Nextgov file photo

Tom Cochran, the former director of New Media Technologies at the White House before becoming chief technology officer at Atlantic Media, Nextgov's parent company, returned to government today to work in the State Department's Bureau of International Information Programs. As managing director, Cochran will support the Obama administration's foreign policy initiatives.

"I'm really excited to help establish a worldwide platform, connecting online and offline assets for digital engagement," Cochran said. "I'd like to apply my experiences from a global media brand, digital startup, and online advocacy to [the bureau] and public diplomacy."

The Bureau of International Information met with controversy last year when the department's inspector general reported that officials spent $630,000 to buy facebook fans in an effort to build engagement with foreign audiences. According to the IG report, "Many in the bureau criticize the advertising campaigns as "buying fans" who may have once clicked on an ad or "liked" a photo but have no real interest in the topic and have never engaged further. Defenders of advertising point to the difficulty of finding a page on Facebook with a general search and the need to use ads to increase visibility."

One of Cochran's most visible initiatives during his earlier service in the Obama administration was leading the team that created the We the People petition site. The site has driven public engagement on a range of topics, from whether pop star Justin Beiber should be deported to gun control.  

At State, Cochran will work under Macon Phillips, the former White House director of digital strategy who moved to the department last year to serve as coordinator for IIP.

Threatwatch Alert

Thousands of cyber attacks occur each day

See the latest threats

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Close [ x ] More from Nextgov
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from Nextgov.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • It’s Time for the Federal Government to Embrace Wireless and Mobility

    The United States has turned a corner on the adoption of mobile phones, tablets and other smart devices, outpacing traditional desktop and laptop sales by a wide margin. This issue brief discusses the state of wireless and mobility in federal government and outlines why now is the time to embrace these technologies in government.

    Download
  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

    Download
  • A New Security Architecture for Federal Networks

    Federal government networks are under constant attack, and the number of those attacks is increasing. This issue brief discusses today's threats and a new model for the future.

    Download
  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

    Download
  • Software-Defined Networking

    So many demands are being placed on federal information technology networks, which must handle vast amounts of data, accommodate voice and video, and cope with a multitude of highly connected devices while keeping government information secure from cyber threats. This issue brief discusses the state of SDN in the federal government and the path forward.

    Download
  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.