Former Department of Defense head of AI ethics joins Comcast

Alka Patel says in a LinkedIn post she has started a position as vice president for government and external affairs at Comcast.
Marine Corps Lt. Gen. Michael Groen, director of the Joint Artificial Intelligence Center; and Alka Patel, JAIC chief of responsible artificial intelligence, hold a news conference at the Pentagon to provide updates on the progress of implementing Defense Department artificial intelligence capabilities, at the Pentagon, Washington, D.C., June 24, 2021. (DoD photo by U.S. Navy Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Ashley L. Cheesman)

The former inaugural head of artificial intelligence ethics policy at the Department of Defense has joined Comcast Corporation as vice president for government and external affairs.

Alka Patel left the Department of Defense (DOD) in October after 20 months working on developing policies for how the military will use AI while waging war. She departed before the final implementation of policies she had helped draft, and it remains unclear who will replace her in the Joint Artificial Intelligence Center. She posted about her new position with Comcast in mid-October.

In her new role at Comcast, Patel will focus on working with state and local governments to expand broadband coverage.

“This work has never been more critical for the people in our region with the shift toward remote education and employment, and the desire for 24/7 connectivity. I look forward to helping Comcast continue making an #Impact,” she said.


Patel has a background in tech, law and regulation and holds both a Masters of Business Administration and a law degree. She previously worked at Carnegie Mellon university before joining the DOD.

Comcast did not return a request for comment before publication.

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