Mayor Karl Dean has created a new Office of Innovation to “capture the entrepreneurial and creative energy of Nashville,” his office announced Friday morning.
Dean named former Councilwoman Kristine LaLonde as well as Yiaway Yeh, former mayor of Palo Alto, Calif., to direct the newly created office, which the Mayor’s Office said would work in conjunction with the Office of Economic and Community Development on business recruitment and job creation efforts.
It will also work with the Mayor’s Office of Neighborhoods to create opportunities for more efficient interdepartmental response to constituent needs.
Other governmental agencies have created similar entities recently in attempts to harness new technology and business practices to aid operations.
According to the Mayor’s Office, LaLonde, who also serves as the chair of the Nashville Poverty Council, will focus on “establishing innovative systems to help individuals and families with social service and economic needs achieve self-sufficiency.”
And Yeh’s job will be to develop ways for Metro agencies to collaborate between offices as well as to partner with “entrepreneurs on new approaches to budget, finance, technology and open government initiatives.”
Yeh has worked in municipal operations and financial management in Oakland, Calif., San Francisco and Los Angeles and public finance banker at Morgan Stanley. He also served in the Peace Corps in Burkina Faso.