Launched by Department of Homeland Security employee and Young Government Leaders co-founder Steve Ressler in May 2008 as a hobby, GovLoop is the largest social networking site for the government community–whoever they are in role and wherever they are in geography.
Steve was smart. He recognized there was no single portal for government-centric individuals to share content and communications; and did something about it. Under the auspices of so-called Government 2.0, Steve envisioned reinventing how government could be run by creating a tool to make the connections between us more fun.
Govloop’s beginning was on par with other internet start-ups: a gaggle of friends and colleagues and random web keyword surfers comprised its early adopters. People joined forces on a website that enables creation and sharing of blog posts, discussion forum ideas, videos, and pictures.
The site boasts over 18,000 members today. From talking about current events to asking questions to boost employee productivity, GovLoop has something for everyone; Steve adds new features to the Ning-powered site frequently.
I’ve been a GovLoop member since last fall, after Andy Krzmarzick suggested I join. I haven’t looked back, building relationships and participating in the community.
Today adds a twist with an announcement that GovLoop becomes an operating subsidiary of GovDelivery, a two-year-old provider of government communications. The firm assists 300 agencies across federal, state, and local governments in the U.S. and assorted entities abroad.
I first met Steve six months ago in Washington, D.C. and saw him again this month in Chicago. I haven’t met Scott Burns, GovDelivery’s CEO, but I’ve heard him interviewed on BlogTalkRadio in June 2009 by Adriel Hampton. You can listen here.
This is welcome news. Steve and Scott are not only passionate government communicators but they are committed to working together. It sounds like a logical match.
From a press release Steve sent me, I share with you two prepared quotes:
Ressler: “What began as a simple idea to improve government through collaboration has already grown on a scale well beyond my expectations and is on a trajectory to become much larger. GovDelivery is an awesome partner to help take GovLoop forward so we can engage more of the government community in more ways to improve government. Already, there are 10 new examples every day of how GovLoop connects people to solve government problems. With GovDelivery, I believe GovLoop can scale so that the community is solving 1,000 government problems daily through collaboration.”
Burns: “GovLoop has been called the Facebook for government, but people don’t use it just because it is a targeted social space. It is helping people across government collaborate and solve real problems every day. Steve Ressler is an amazing leader and has helped the GovLoop community grow. We are thrilled to have him lead GovLoop forward and believe that GovDelivery’s resources and expertise in building audiences for government information will only accelerate GovLoop’s growth.”
I’ll watch GovLoop’s growth from inside its transparent walls where its movers and shakers–Steve Radick, Macon Phillips, Craig Newmark, Andrea Baker, Tracy Johnson, Emma Antunes, Kim Patrick Kobza, Mike Russell, Gwynne Kostin, Paul Canning, Mark Drapeau, and countless others–ponder what-if ideas and make magic come alive.
If we share a passion for government and haven’t connected on GovLoop yet, shall I see you inside or will you live through my blog posts here?