Top Latinas from Obama White House Want To Help Nonprofits Use Technology for Good


cecilia munozCecilia Muñoz wasn’t just the Director of the White House Domestic Policy Council and Director of the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs. She was also the highest ranking Latina to serve in the diverse Obama White House.

Now, Muñoz has taken a new job with the New America think tank, which seeks to “bridge the gap between technology and public policy.” Along with Vivian Graubard, Muñoz will lead the new Public Interest Technology Initiative.

Together, Muñoz and Graubard will try to help nonprofits and non governmental organizations better utilize technology in their missions.

“Too frequently organizations think of technology as the system which allows them to do the work, and this goes well beyond that. The way NGOs are going to be doing their work in the future is about data and technology,” Muñoz told NBC Latino.

Like Muñoz, Graubard is another member of the Obama Administration. As a twenty-something Latina, Graubard was one of the founding members of Obama’s “Geek Squad,” officially known as the U.S. Digital Service.

Millennials like Graubard have earned a reputation as the job hopping generation; at any given time, up to 25% of Millennials plan to leave their current position by the end of the year.

However, Graubard is no ordinary Millennial job hopper. In 2013, the 27-year-old was honored by Time as one of the magazine’s “30 Under 30 World Changers.”

According to NBC Latino, Graubard helped the White House develop technology to catalog and answer letters to Obama that were not written in English, a program that helped make Obama the first president to answer letters written in foreign languages.

Already, the Public Interest Technology Initiative has chosen 15 groups working on projects like civil rights, big data, and healthcare. The initiative will help these groups develop and utilize innovative technology to serve the public good.

“I think it matters that the two people running this new program are Latinas,” said Muñoz to NBC Latino. “We count on these organizations to address inequalities in our society and that is more important now than ever before because we live in this time of extraordinary transformational change…”

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