Message from the Executive Director
2022 was a whirlwind for the Foundation for American Innovation, with a new leadership team, new successes from our Studio and Policy teams, and a new name. This time last year, we were Lincoln Network, and I had just taken over for Garrett Johnson as Executive Director. Dan Lips had just stepped up as our Head of Policy, and Grace Meyer had just become our Chief Operating Officer.
One year later, I’m pleased to report on our many successes. Our events programming was back in full swing in 2022, with a great REBOOT conference in Miami—increasingly the tech hub of the future. The Labs team (formerly Lincoln Studio) continues to apply technology to critical challenges facing the country. And our Policy Research team informs the conversation in D.C. while supporting intelligent governance and policy-making in the national interest.
There’s much in these pages about our accomplishments, but first, a word about our name change, effective Q1 2023: Lincoln Network has become the Foundation for American Innovation. As our influence and ambitions have grown, we’ve concluded that our new name will help us convey to our ever-growing audience of technologists, policymakers, founders, and politicos who we are and what our mission is. Let me take the three words in turn.
When we started out, “Network” was the right word for the organization. Our goal was to develop the network between D.C. and Silicon Valley, and through our events we sought to connect two worlds that rarely understood each other. Though events are still a core part of what we do, they’re no longer our sole focus. Today, thanks to the expansion of our Labs and Research teams, we’re not just a network, but a central node, or Foundation, in the movement to make technology and governance work for the American people.
That brings me to the second word: American. While plenty of the issues we focus on have a global reach, we have a fundamental emphasis on the United States. At a time of rising digital authoritarianism abroad, and growing pessimism at home about technology and the American experiment, we take a different approach. The best technologies and companies started in American cities, and we subscribe to a thoroughly American spirit of optimism for a bold and dynamic future.
And finally, we have Innovation. In our lifetimes, innovation has lifted millions out of poverty and created opportunities no one could have imagined. Strengthening our country and supporting human flourishing will require experimentation, tinkering, and a willingness to disrupt stagnant industries and question old orthodoxies. Innovation—in technology, policy, and governance—will be essential to ensuring a prosperous future.
Of course, this is what we’ve always believed, since our founding nine years ago. We’ve always striven to promote the ideas and policies necessary to keep America at the forefront of technological innovation. And in 2023, we’re in a stronger position than ever to do so.
The pages ahead detail how we’ve pursued that mission in 2022, and the roadmap for even more success in the new year. None of this work would be possible without the generosity of our steadfast supporters throughout the country. We are extraordinarily grateful for their contributions. If you are inspired to join their ranks, please reach out to us.
On behalf of all of us at the Foundation for American Innovation, I look forward to working with you to shape the future of technology and American society.
Foundation for American Innovation