Hsiang takes over for Matt Cutts, who left the White House’s digital tech surge team in April. She’s just the third administrator of USDS since it was founded in 2014 under Mikey Dickerson to bring tech talent into government, initially to put out the fire of the Healthcare.gov rollout.
Hsiang was an early member of USDS, working as part of that effort to fix Healthcare.gov and then going on to serve as founding executive director of the USDS’s embed team at the Department of Health and Human Services.
“Since its creation, the United States Digital Service has served as a cornerstone of innovation by uniquely focusing on human-centered solutions to government’s most pressing technical problems,” OMB acting Director Shalanda Young said in a release. “As USDS Administrator, Mina brings a wealth of government digital delivery experience, as well as the leadership to continue cultivating the extraordinary talent at USDS and delivering better services for the American people.”
Since her original stint with USDS, Hsiang worked in leadership roles with Devoted Health, a health care startup focused on seniors. She then served on the Biden-Harris transition as part of the agency review team at HHS before rejoining USDS as senior adviser for delivery, focused specifically on COVID-19 response and the rollout of the Vaccines.gov.
Hsiang will be the first woman and first Asian-American to lead USDS.
In recent years, USDS has kept a lower profile. But it continues to seek new tech talent to inject into government to tackle the most glaring digital holes across federal agencies. Most recently, during the pandemic, that includes supporting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the COVID-19 pandemic, streamlining financial relief, improving the immigration and refugee processes, aiding students with their loans, and reforming procurement and federal hiring.
As part of the American Rescue Plan, USDS received a $200 million boost in funding, multiplying several times over what USDS has received in funding since 2014.