At a Glance
- Career History:
Washington, D.C. Chief Technology Officer (2007 to 2009); State of
's Assistant Secretary of Commerce and Technology (2006 to 2007); CEO of Creostar; Director of Infrastructure Technology for Arlington County, Virginia (2001)
- Birthday: October 9, 1974
- Hometown: Delhi, India
- Alma Mater: University of Maryland, B.S. (behavioral and social sciences), 1998; University of Maryland University College, M.A. (information systems management), 2001; University of Virginia, Sorensen Institute for Political Leadership, 2007
- Web site
Path to Power
Born in Delhi, India, Kundra's family moved him to Tanzania when he was 1 year old. When he was 11, the family moved to Gaithersburg, Md. Culture shock hit Kundra hard. He had been surrounded by near abject poverty. For example, he remembers the first time he saw a dog food commercial. "I was shocked," said Kundra. "I was used to seeing people starve in Africa. It was mind-boggling to me that people could afford to feed their dogs!"
For college, Kundra stayed close to home, attending the University of Maryland where he majored in psychology. He would also earn a master's from Maryland's University College in information technology.
President George W. Bush's administrator for e-government, Karen Evans, was tasked with coordinating the use of technology throughout the federal government. Kundra, on the other hand, is expected to play a much more prominent role in tracking of the $71 billion federal technology budget. Obama wants to use technology to modernize government, meaning Kundra might also have the authority to question how and why agencies spend their tech funds.
Kundra will also head the CIO Council, which brings the tech heads from every department together to discuss new technology strategies, initiatives and goals.
From 2006 to 2007, Kundra served as assistant secretary of Commerce and Technology for Virginia, working under Virginia Governor and Democratic National Committee Chairman Tim Kaine (D). Also working in Kaine's administration at the time was Aneesh Chopra, Obama's chief technology officer. Kundra and Chopra are good friends who often have Blackberry policy conversations at 2 a.m.
Kundra will work in the Office of Management and Budget for OMB Director Jack Lew. Also joining Kundra in the OMB is Chief Performance Officer Jeffrey Zients.
Kundra has donated $4,760 since 2002, and the only candidate he has given money to is Barack Obama. From 2007 to 2008, Kundra donated $3,300 to Obama's presidential campaign. The rest of his donations went to various political action committees, including the Democratic Party of Virginia.Center for Responsive Politics