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Twenty-Two NIST Boulder Employees Receive Awards

For Immediate Release: December 16, 2009

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Contact: James Burrus
303-497-4789

BOULDER, Colo.—The Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has honored 22 employees of its Boulder Laboratories with the NIST Bronze Medal and other prestigious federal awards. Kent Rochford, NIST Boulder Laboratories Acting Director, hosted an awards event at the NIST-Boulder campus on Monday while newly confirmed NIST Director Patrick Gallagher was on hand to congratulate the winners and personally present them with their awards.

Bronze Medal Award

Fifteen NIST Boulder staff members received the Bronze Medal Award, the highest honorary recognition given by NIST. Initiated in 1966, the Bronze Medal is given for significant performance exemplified by outstanding or significant contributions that have increased the efficiency and effectiveness of NIST.

Recipients include:

  • Richard P. Mirin, Electronics Engineer; Kevin L. Silverman, Physicist; Martin J. Stevens, Electronics Engineer, all from the Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory (EEEL); and Steven T. Cundiff, Chief, Quantum Physics Division, Physics Laboratory, for their technical ingenuity in advancing semiconductor quantum dot metrology through ground-breaking absorption studies and practical, world-first devices.

  • John M. Moreland, a physicist in the EEEL, for his pioneering contributions to the development of micro-engineered contrast agents for magnetic resonance imaging.

  • Jeffrey R. Guerrieri, Electronics Engineer; Katherine MacReynolds, Electronics Engineer; Douglas T. Tamura, Electronics Technician, all with the EEEL, for creating the world’s first extrapolation range for measuring the on-axis gain and polarization of antennas for frequencies from 50 GHz to 110 GHz.

  • Michael H. Francis, Physicist; Jeffrey R. Guerrieri, Electronics Engineer; David R. Novotny, Electronics Engineer; and Perry F. Wilson, Acting Chief, Electromagnetics Division, all of whom are in the EEEL, for their analysis and certification of the U.S. Passport Card architecture resulting in a mitigation of security threats and privacy concerns. Four members of the team not listed are from NIST Gaithersburg.

  • Eric W. Lemmon, Mechanical Engineer, Chemical Science and Technology Laboratory (CSTL), for technical leadership in the development and dissemination of standards for energy-related and industrially important fluids.

  • Elizabeth S. Drexler, Materials Research Engineer; Christopher N. McCowan, Materials Research Engineer; and Thomas A. Siewert, Supervisory Metallurgist, all in the Materials Science and Engineering Laboratory (MSEL), for improving pipeline safety through the development of new methods to determine fatigue resistance in pipeline steels at near-actual explosion conditions. One other member of this group not listed is from NIST Gaithersburg.

Allen V. Astin Measurement Service Award

The Allen V. Astin Measurement Service Award, first presented in 1984, is granted for outstanding achievement in the advancement of measurement science or in the delivery of measurement services.

  • The award this year went to Paul D. Hale, Physicist; Dylan F. Williams, Electronics Engineer, both in the EEEL; Andrew M. Dienstfrey, Mathematician; and Chih-Ming (Jack) Wang, Supervisory Mathematical Statistician, from the Information Technology Laboratory (ITL), for providing a world-first ability to calibrate high-speed electronics in both the time and frequency domains simultaneously with known uncertainty.

Eugene Casson Crittenden Award

The Crittenden Award, established in 1967, recognizes superior achievement by permanent employees who perform supporting services that have a significant impact on technical programs beyond their own offices.

  • The award this year was presented to Gary A. Merlino, Customer Services Assistant in the Office of the Chief Facilities Management Officer, for making a positive impact at the NIST Boulder site through personal initiative and exemplary customer service.

Samuel Wesley Stratton Award

The Samuel Wesley Stratton Award, first presented in 1962, is granted for outstanding scientific or engineering achievements in support of NIST objectives.

  • Receiving the award this year was James C. Bergquist, a NIST Fellow in the Physics Laboratory’s Time and Frequency Division, for leading the research and development of the world’s most precise atomic clock which is based on a single ion of mercury and exquisitely stabilized lasers.

Building Tomorrow's Workplace Award

The Building Tomorrow’s Workplace Award, first presented in 1995, recognizes individuals or groups in Boulder for significant contributions in creating an inclusive workforce and working toward achieving affirmative employment and diversity goals.

  • This year’s award recipient was given to Susie Rivera, Office Manager for the Radio Frequency Electronics Group in the EEEL, for the positive impact she has had on the lives of full-time workers, students, guest researchers and visitors—many of whom represent diverse backgrounds—and for going above and beyond in helping them successfully transition into the NIST workplace.


As a non-regulatory agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, NIST promotes U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness by advancing measurement science, standards and technology in ways that enhance economic security and improve our quality of life.