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Prabhakar Leaving NIST; Hebner Now Acting Director

Arati Prabhakar, director of the Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology, announced today that she will be leaving government service to take a post in the private sector.

Robert Hebner, who has been NIST acting director since late January 1997 when Prabhakar began maternity leave, will continue to serve as acting director. Hebner became acting deputy director of NIST in 1996, where he has been responsible for the day-to-day operation of the agency and for long-range planning and policy development.

Hebner received his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Missouri in 1971. He joined what was then the National Bureau of Standards as a presidential intern and has since held a variety of positions in NIST's laboratories, specializing in electrical and electronics engineering. Hebner has served in special assignments at the Office of Management and Budget, Sandia National Laboratories, and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency.

The position of NIST director is a presidential appointment. Prabhakar was nominated to be the 10th director of NIST in April 1993 by President Clinton and began serving in the position following confirmation by the U.S. Senate on May 28, 1993. Prabhakar will be taking a position as senior vice president and chief technology officer of the Raychem Corporation, Menlo Park, Calif.

Released March 12, 1997, Updated January 8, 2018