The U.S. Department of State has appointed Laura Williams as deputy chief information officer for foreign operations.
Williams took up the post March 1 after previously serving as director of analytics at the agency’s Center for Analytics. Before that, she was deputy director for bilateral affairs, international communications and information policy, according to her LinkedIn.
Prior to this, Williams held a variety of information management roles at American embassies in Nicosia, Algiers, Rome and Mexico City, and also held varied assignments at the State Department’s headquarters in Washington D.C.
Her appointment comes as the State Department works to boost its information technology operations in support of U.S. diplomacy.
At the start of the year, State launched a new Office of the Special Envoy for Critical and Emerging Technology, which is dedicated to the intersection of technology and diplomacy. The new office is being led by Deputy Envoy Seth Center, who reports to Deputy Secretary Wendy Sherman through Ambassador at Large for Cyberspace and Digital Policy Nate Fick.
In an interview with the Daily Scoop Podcast in January, State Department CIO Kelly Fletcher set out details of a recent network modernization undertaken by the Bureau of Information Resource Management known as Tron.
As part of that modernization program, the agency has focused on providing more “point-to-point interactions,” averting the need for internet traffic from State bureaus to be routed via Washington, D.C., Fletcher said.