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Republicans, Here Is Your New CTO

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, June 5 2013

The Republican Party announced last night that RNC Chairman Reince Priebus has fulfilled his promise to hire a chief technology officer to serve as the party's central point person for technology.

The RNC announced Andrew Barkett, a manager at Facebook previously responsible for overseeing teams of engineers, will be picking up the mantle.

"I am confident that with Andy’s experience and our continued efforts to build meaningful relationships with experts in Silicon Valley, we’ll see the changes to this part of our operation that we all agree are both important and necessary to winning elections in the future," Priebus said in a press release.

According to Barkett's LinkedIn profile, he has also served stints at Google, and NVidia in program management and management consulting roles. He was senior director for engineering at Livescribe. Barkett holds an MBA from from the University of California at Davis and majored in political economy at UC Berkeley.

The RNC announced in March that after a lengthy period of soul-searching, party officials had decided that they owed some part of their losses in 2012 to a failure of technological infrastructure. Priebus said at the time that the party would hire a CTO by some time in May.

"It’s essential that the Republican Party has the resources to drive voter turnout as we look toward the elections of 2014, 2016 and beyond," Barkett said, according to a GOP release. “Silicon Valley welcomes the party’s efforts to be more creative and innovative, and I look forward to helping the party accomplish these goals.”