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Office of the Director

NIST works with the private sector, other government agencies, and universities to develop and apply the technology, measurements and standards needed for new and improved products and services.

Welcome to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). As an agency of the Department of Commerce, NIST plays a key role in enabling the hard work and innovative ideas of the American people to strengthen our infrastructure for innovation to advance manufacturing, service, and science; to promote trade; and to improve public safety and security. This leads to improved quality of life and better and more jobs.

NIST works with the private sector, other government agencies, and universities to develop and apply the technology, measurements and standards needed for new and improved products and services. In short, we help to enable the future. We encourage you to learn more about NIST's activities, how to make use of our products and services, and how to work with NIST.

NIST Director and under secretary of commerce for standards and technology

James Olthoff, Acting ADLP

Dr. James Olthoff is currently performing the non-exclusive functions and duties of the Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and Director, National Institute of Standards and Technology. In this role, Dr. Olthoff provides high-level oversight and direction for NIST. 

Prior to taking on this role, Dr. Olthoff was the Associate Director for Laboratory Programs. He provided direction and operational guidance for all of NIST's scientific and technical laboratory programs, and served as principal deputy to the Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and NIST Director, among other duties. He held that position starting in 2018. 

Read Dr. Olthoff's full bio.

News and Updates

Taking Measure Blog

Events

5709 Software Verification and Validation

Thu, Jun 10 2021, 2:00pm - Thu, Jun 24 2021, 4:00pm EDT
Session I (June 10, 2021) and Session II (June 24, 2021) These two 2-hour sessions on Software Verification and

5712 Volume Metrology Seminar - CANCELED

Mon, Jun 14 2021, 8:00am - Fri, Jun 18 2021, 5:30pm EDT
The NIST Gaithersburg campus is currently in Phase 1 of reopening and is closed to visitors. Do not make any travel

Industry Impacts

Cement

Cement is the core ingredient in concrete, the most widely used building material in the world. It plays an integral role in infrastructure such as buildings

Pipeline Safety

More than 2.5 million miles of natural gas, liquid petroleum and hydrogen pipelines cross the United States. This infrastructure is critical to our energy needs

Firefighter Protective Equipment

Firefighters rely on self-contained breathing apparatuses (SCBA) to protect them from dangerous heat and toxic smoke. NIST research helped to improve industry

Awards

Ellen Voorhees - NIST Fellow

ITL is pleased to announce that Dr. Ellen Voorhees has been named a NIST Fellow. Dr. Voorhees is a pioneer and recognized leader in the U.S

Contacts

  • Public Affairs Office
    (301) 975-6478
  • Federal Relay Service
    (800) 877-8339