RELEASE: Inaugural Door Stop Award Winners!

April 12, 2016

Nicko Margolies – – (202) 642-4467

Press Release

Announcing the Inaugural Door Stop Award Winners

The Door Stop Awards logo.

Recognizing Outstanding and Extraordinary Efforts to Open the Doors of Congress to the American People and to Positive Change.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 12, 2016)At an event attended by approximately 100 people at the Consumer Technology Association’s Innovation House on Capitol Hill, The OpenGov Foundation announced the winners of the inaugural Door Stop awards for transparency. These six winners from the federal legislative branch consistently created structural changes that resulted in long-term transparency. They didn’t just open the door to the public once, they installed a door stop to ensure that the United States Congress never closes again.

“This inaugural group of Door Stop Award winners are heroes of open government who toiled on internal transparency improvements for the love of the institution, not the public recognition,” said Seamus Kraft, co-founder and executive director of The OpenGov Foundation. “These awards are a small token of appreciation for important work that will only become more impactful as the public gains greater access and understanding of the U.S. Congress.”

Meet the 2016 Door Stop Award Winners:

Speaker John Boehner
Mr. Boehner represented Ohio in the U.S. House of Representatives starting in 1991 and was speaker from 2011 to 2015. He expanded the use of live video on the House floor and in committee hearings, pushed for legislative data to be posted online in XML and bulk data formats and much more.

Majority Leader Eric Cantor
Mr. Cantor represented Virginia starting in 2001 and was the Majority Leader from 2011 to 2014. He worked diligently in leadership to involve more citizens in the legislative process and standardize the data coming out of Congress. He began the practice of publishing House Floor scheduling information in structured data formats, supported efforts to record and live stream House committee proceedings and pushed for new legislative data standards.

House Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer
Mr. Hoyer has represented Maryland since 1981 and served as the Democratic Whip since 2011. He has lead the charge to open congressional data through active participation in the House’s Bulk Data Task Force, hosting both Congressional Hackathons, producing apps such as the Whip Watch and much more.

Jo-Marie St. Martin
Ms. St. Martin served as general counsel and director of legislative operations for Speaker Boehner. She was instrumental in improving transparency in the legislative process including a drive to post bill language online for three days before it would be considered on the floor and to open up Republican conference rules.

Karina Newton
Ms. Newton worked in Congress from 2000-2012 serving as senior advisor and director of new media for Nancy Pelosi. During her tenure, she shepherded increased online disclosure including posting lobbying disclosure forms, member expenses and bill text online and drove an update to the franking manual that enabled members to use social media tools like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Congressman Jared Polis
Mr. Polis has served in the U.S. House representing Colorado since 2009 and is one of the few successful tech entrepreneurs in Congress. He brought that spirit into the institution, protecting internet freedom and co-chairing both the Congressional Open Source Technology Caucus and the Caucus on Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

Thank you to the Congressional Open Source Technology Caucus, our Honorary Co-Chair, and our many Supporters and Co-Hosts:

About The OpenGov Foundation
The OpenGov Foundation is a fiercely nonpartisan nonprofit helping people participate in the government decisions that affect their lives. We believe innovative technology and open data can help deliver democratic governments that listen to citizens, operate efficiently and solve our shared challenges the smart way. We believe democracy means everyone should have the chance to be a hands-on contributor.