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NIST Names Two to Earthquake Advisory Board

A public health expert and a sociologist have been appointed by Willie May, acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and acting director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), to serve on the Advisory Committee on Earthquake Hazards Reduction (ACEHR) of the National Earthquake Hazards Reduction Program (NEHRP).

Established by the Earthquake Hazards Reduction Act of 1977, NEHRP is the federal government's program to reduce the risks to life and property from earthquakes. NEHRP consists of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Geological Survey, and NIST, which serves as the lead agency.

In response to the 2004 NEHRP reauthorization legislation, NIST established ACEHR to function solely as an advisory body, in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act.

The two new ACEHR members are Lisa Ludwig, a public health professor at the University of California, Irvine, and Lori Peek, a sociology associate professor at Colorado State University. Ludwig's term ends on December 3, 2017, and Peek's ends on January 31, 2018. They join a group of 13 continuing ACEHR members, including experts from academia, industry and state and local governments.

ACEHR acts in the public interest to assess:

  • trends and developments in the science and engineering of earthquake hazards reduction;
  • the effectiveness of NEHRP in performing its statutory activities (fostering improved design and construction methods and practices; land use controls and redevelopment; prediction techniques and early-warning systems; coordinated emergency preparedness plans; and public education and involvement programs);
  • any need to revise NEHRP; and,
  • program management, coordination, implementation and activities.

More information on NEHRP and the ACEHR can be found at

Released March 16, 2015, Updated February 2, 2023