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Associate Director for Laboratory Programs

The NIST Associate Director for Laboratory Programs (ADLP) assists the Under Secretary in the direction of NIST and its six laboratory programs and serves as Principal Deputy to the Under Secretary.


  • Provides direction and operational guidance for the scientific and technical laboratory programs of the Institute
  • Serves as lead for program and budget development for laboratory programs
  • Coordinates interagency and outreach activities
  • Represents NIST and the laboratory programs to external audiences
  • Has ultimate line management responsibility for the provision of measurement services that meet the needs of industry, academia, and other government offices.

NIST's six laboratories include the Communications Technology Laboratory, Engineering LaboratoryInformation Technology Laboratory, Material Measurement Laboratory, NIST Center for Neutron Research, and the Physical Measurement Laboratory.

The NIST laboratories collaborate with U.S. industry and universities to conduct measurement, standards, and technology research that advances the nation's R&D infrastructure. The overarching goal of the NIST laboratory programs is to accelerate U.S. innovation, which is a major driver of economic growth and job creation.

The NIST Laboratories provide opportunities for financial assistance award programs through the Measurement Science and Engineering Research Grant Programs.There are also many NIST program-specific financial assistance award programs to support the conduct of research and activities consistent with the NIST mission. See a list of NIST Notices of Funding Opportunities here.

Associate Director, Laboratory Programs

James Olthoff, Acting ADLP

Dr. James K. Olthoff is the Associate Director for Laboratory Programs. As ADLP, he provides direction and operational guidance for NIST's scientific and technical laboratory programs and serves as principal deputy to the Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and NIST Director, among other duties. 

Dr. Olthoff's Bio

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