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Public Affairs Office (PAO)

PAO provides communications support to help NIST share its research results, services, and programs with U.S. industry, universities, non-profit organizations, government agencies, and the public; to assist policymakers in learning about NIST's role and activities; and to advise and assist NIST managers on public affairs and policy strategies.

Gail Porter, Director, Public Affairs Office

  • NIST General Information

  • Fact Sheets

  • Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  • News

    Current and archived news releases, newsletters, budget updates, and other news items. 

  • NIST Colloquium Series

    Our most prestigious forum, the NIST Staff Colloquium Series brings outstanding scientists, engineers, explorers, scholars and leaders of government and industry to NIST to present challenging and stimulating ideas on scientific and technical topics of current interest. Colloquia addresses usually are scheduled on Fridays at 10:30 a.m. and presented in the Green Auditorium of the NIST campus in Gaithersburg, Maryland.

  • NIST Contacts for the News Media

    Provides assistance to reporters and other news media representatives seeking information about NIST programs.

    • NIST's policy is to be open and responsive with the news media and the public about its research, services and activities. The DOC Communications Policy lays out the roles and responsibilities of NIST staff regarding public communications, specifically noting that researchers may “freely and openly discuss scientific and technical ideas, approaches, findings, and conclusions based on their official work.”
  • NIST Tech Beat

    NIST's lay language newsletter for journalists and others interested in NIST news, issued biweekly. 

  • Public Inquiries

    The central contact for public inquiries about NIST activities and ordering information for NIST publications.

    100 Bureau Drive, Stop 1070
    Gaithersburg, MD 20899-1070
    Phone: (301) 975-NIST, Fax: (301) 926-1630

  • Conference Program

    Assists in all aspects of planning and managing meetings and conferences at NIST: budgeting, registration, food, lodging, transportation, publicity, and accounting.

    Contact: Mary Lou Norris, (301) 975-2002

  • Educational Activities

    Provides a single contact for initial information on various NIST educational activities, including school tours.

    Contact: Gayle Swenson, (301) 975-2770

  • Tours | Visitor Information

  • NIST offers tours for industry groups, the scientific and technical community, college students, and students in grades 9 through 12.

    Contact: Gayle Swenson, (301) 975-2770 (Gaithersburg)
    Contact: James Burrus, (303) 497-4789 (Boulder)

  • Website and Publications

    Manages design and content creation for the NIST website. Writes and produces NIST-wide brochures and flyers.

    Contact: Robin Materese, (301) 975-4158

  • Community Relations

    Liaison with state, local, and community organizations.

    Contact: Gail Porter, (301) 975-3392

  • Contact Information

    NIST Public Affairs Office (Gaithersburg)
    100 Bureau Drive, Stop 1070, Gaithersburg, Md. 20899-1070
    Telephone: 301-975-2758 Facsimile: 301-926-1630
    Federal Relay Service (800) 877-8339 (TTY)