Top 30 Public Sector Leaders to Watch in 2020: GitHub’s Elizabeth Pemmerl

Elizabeth Pemmerl, GitHub

For Elizabeth Pemmerl, the most satisfying achievement in recent months has been helping agencies leverage GitHub to support pandemic-related work. Pemmerl and team helped the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention create GitHub repositories to host a national genomics consortium focused on sequencing COVID-19. The State of California is using GitHub to share interagency COVID-19 research and to coordinate the delivery of related citizen services.

There are more than 50 million users on GitHub, so it’s a natural place for interaction between government agencies, academia, corporations and not-for-profits.

“We are focused on two key questions: How do we help teams collaborate more effectively, and how do we help them ship more secure software, more efficiently?” Pemmerl explained. “If we do these things well, agencies can focus on how that software and collaboration drive mission outcomes — like rethinking how veteran benefits are delivered.”

The Department of Veterans Affairs leveraged GitHub’s Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program-authorized cloud environment to rebuild the VA.gov homepage. Now, a veteran can find 80% of services on the page, including refilling prescriptions, managing their GI Bill benefits and requesting military records. The claim ratings API at VA, also built on GitHub, has reduced benefit processing time by up to three weeks.

Why Watch

GitHub’s public sector business has grown 80%, on average, in each of the last five years — so Pemmerl is continuously focused on scaling the business and the team.

“We’re making significant investments in GitHub this year in order to support the most complex and sensitive agency missions,” she said. “I am excited about the capabilities we are bringing to our customers in the months to come!”

Read the rest of the “Top 30 Public Sector Leaders to Watch in 2020” list here.

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