Dr. Katherine W. Getao serves the Government of Kenya as the ICT Secretary, the strategic head of ICT in Kenya. In 2014 and 2015 she was an active member of the United Nations Group of Governmental Experts in the field of security in the context of information and communication technology.
From 2013 to 2014, Dr. Katherine Getao supported the formation of the newly created ICT Authority – providing strategic planning expertise, and transition and change management guidance.
Dr. Katherine Getao was appointed the ICT Secretary in charge of the eGovernment Directorate in August 2010. The eGovernment Directorate was the strategic advisor on ICT issues to the Government of Kenya and manages the ICT operations of the government. Katherine prioritized the implementation of the constitution through the use of ICTs to deliver public services to all Kenyans and the achievement of Vision 2030 through improving the efficiency and effectiveness of government. Katherine led the design phase 4 #EWIcyber of the Huduma Kenya Initiative which has transformed the way citizens access government services. In December 2011 Katherine was awarded the Elder of the Burning Spear by the President of Kenya for her services to the nation.
Prior to this responsibility between 2008 and 2010, Katherine was a project manager in the NEPAD e-Schools Initiative, which equipped African youth with the skills and knowledge to participate confidently and effectively in the global information society and knowledge economy.
From 2001 to 2007 Katherine was the Director of the School of Computing and Informatics at University of Nairobi in Kenya. During her tenure the school expanded its undergraduate and postgraduate programs in computer science and became the first East African university to graduate doctoral students in computer science. Katherine also participated actively in the development of computer science programs in higher education in the East Africa region through external examination and her work as a reviewer for the Kenyan Commission for Higher Education. In her own research work Katherine published journal and conference papers in the areas of grid computing and the use of computers in education. Her work in education was recognized when she was elected to the ICT Hall of Fame in Kenya in 2007.
Katherine holds a B.Sc. (Hons) in Combined Sciences (Chemistry and Computer Studies) from Brighton Polytechnic, U.K., an M.Sc. in Intelligent Knowledge-based Systems from the University of Essex, U.K. and a Ph.D. in Computing from Lancaster University, U.K. She is a Commonwealth Research Fellow (2005).
Katherine is single with no dependents. In her spare time she enjoys learning, writing and mentoring young people.