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2021 NIST Awards Ceremony

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Gold Medal Award

The Gold Medal Award is the highest award given by the Department of Commerce for extraordinary, notable or prestigious contributions that impact the mission of the Department of Commerce and/or one operating unit, and which reflect favorably on the Department.

Individual Award

For his sustained and visionary leadership, positioning the U.S. as a global leader of the emerging quantum economy.
  • Carl Williams

Group Award

For enabling terahertz and millimeter-wave cameras of unmatched size and sensitivity, now deployed on terrestrial and sub-orbital telescope missions.
  • Jason Austermann
  • James Beall
  • Gene Hilton
  • Johannes Hubmayr
  • Jeffrey Van Lanen
  • Michael Vissers
  • Jordan Wheeler

Group Award

For developing the world-class capabilities of the Additive Manufacturing Metrology Testbed and delivering groundbreaking measurements and data.
  • Brandon Lane
  • Steven Grantham
  • Ho Yeung
  • David Deisenroth
  • Jason Fox
  • Jared Tarr
  • Jay Nanninga
  • Clarence Zarobila

Individual Award

For creating an unprecedented ability to accurately retrieve reliable, contemporaneous information on COVID-19 to fight the 2020 pandemic.
  • Ellen Voorhees

Group Award

For exceptional leadership in developing, and driving adoption of, a novel framework to manage privacy risk while maximizing the beneficial uses of data.
  • Naomi Lefkovitz
  • Kaitlin Boeckl
  • Nakia Grayson
  • Maihuong Nguyen
  • Lisa Carnahan
  • Victoria Pillitteri
  • Adam Sedgewick
  • Dylan Gilbert

Group Award

For developing innovative technologies that resolved critical internet vulnerabilities and dramatically improved internet robustness.
  • Oliver Borchert
  • Douglas Montgomery
  • Kotikalapudi Sriram
  • Patrick Gleichmann

Organizational Award

For exceptional speed, efficiency and transparency in executing CARES Act provisions to support the nation’s manufacturers during a global pandemic.
  • Organizational Representative: Hope Snowden

Group Award

For rapid development of NIST’s first RNA research-grade test material for detection and diagnostic measurements of COVID-19 SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA.
  • Peter Vallone
  • Megan Cleveland
  • William Valiant
  • Erica Romsos
  • Carolyn Steffen
  • Nathanael Olson
  • Stephanie Servetas
  • Hariharan Iyer

Group Award

For rapidly developing quantitative antibody assays and advancing global standards to underpin development of COVID-19 clinical tests and vaccines.
  • Lili Wang
  • Linhua Tian
  • Elzafir Elsheikh
  • Sarah Inwood
  • Sheng Lin-Gibson

Group Award

For their landmark development of the first chip-scale optical clock, supporting the most exacting needs of timing applications in the field.
  • Matthew Hummon
  • John Kitching
  • Scott Papp
  • Scott Diddams
  • Kartik Srinivasan
  • Daron Westly
  • B. Robert Ilic

Silver Medal Award

The Silver Medal Award is the second highest honor conferred by the Department of Commerce. It recognizes exceptional performance characterized by noteworthy or superlative contributions that have a direct and lasting impact within the Department.

Group Award

For advancing quantum communication and imaging applications by creating novel high-efficiency single-photon detectors and kilopixel arrays
  • Varun Verma
  • Adriana Lita
  • Richard Mirin
  • Sae Woo Nam
  • Thomas Gerrits
  • Martin Stevens
  • Robert Horansky

Group Award

For developing critical thermoelectric standards, instrumentation, and metrologies that enable the commercialization of energy conversion materials.
  • Joshua Martin
  • Winnie Wong-Ng
  • Martin Green

Group Award

For developing and promoting adoption of methods to determine protein structure that increase patient access to life-saving biosimilar drugs.
  • Jeffrey Hudgens
  • Kyle Anderson
  • Ioannis Karageorgos
  • Robert Brinson, III
  • Frank Delaglio
  • Luke Arbogast
  • John Marino
  • Ryan Evans
  • Anthony Kearsley

Group Award

For innovative leadership of cost-effective facilities construction resulting in a state-of-the-art building for world-leading scientific advances.
  • Ruben Rodriguez, Jr.
  • Brian Burnham
  • William Jenkinson
  • Ramil Palmaira
  • Christopher Kucko
  • Derek Ward
  • Edward Cope
  • Jonathan Repaci

Group Award

For development of the first free public cybersecurity SCAP 1.3 content for the macOS Catalina (macOS 10.15) and Big Sur (macOS 11).
  • Jason Blake
  • Robert Gendler
  • Blair Heiserman
  • Mark Trapnell
  • Eric Trapnell
  • Dylan Yaga
  • Murugiah Souppaya

Bronze Medal Award

The Bronze Medal Award is the highest recognition awarded by NIST. The award, approved by the Director, recognizes work that has resulted in more effective and efficient management systems as well as the demonstration of unusual initiative or creative ability in the development and improvement of methods and procedures. It is also given for significant contributions affecting major programs, scientific accomplishments, and superior performance of assigned tasks for at least five consecutive years.

Group Award

For the rapid development and deployment of an innovative COVID-19 research system used globally to improve collective research knowledge-sharing.
  • Alden Dima
  • Talapady Bhat
  • Benjamin Long
  • Jacob Collard
  • Thurston Sexton
  • John Elliott

Group Award

For characterization of the performance and usage of facemasks used to slow the spread of COVID-19, and communication of the results to the public.
  • Christopher Zangmeister
  • Jimmy Radney
  • Jamie Weaver
  • Matthew Staymates
  • Robin Materese
  • Riley Wilson
  • Richard Press
  • Leon Geršković

Group Award

For development of a novel reference material that mimics the particles found in protein-based drugs and supports accurate measures of drug quality.
  • Srivalli Telikepalli
  • Dean Ripple
  • Michael Carrier
  • Kristen Steffens
  • Christopher Montgomery
  • Nicholas W. M. Ritchie
  • John Lu

Group Award

For design and development of a system of traceable measurements that enable risk assessments of nanoparticles that exhibit photocatalytic activity.
  • Vytautas Reipa
  • Vincent A. Hackley
  • Blaza Toman

Group Award

For development of an IT system to modernize and simplify NIST's publication processes
  • Robert Commarota
  • Cerasela Constantin
  • Sushama Singh
  • Simon Frechette
  • Eric Shirley
  • Andrea Medina-Smith
  • Elisabeth Mansfield
  • Douglas Montgomery
  • Peter Gehring
  • Fernando J. Cintron

Group Award

For leading a community-sourced effort that established a foundation for building trust in phase field simulations used for advanced materials design.
  • Daniel Wheeler
  • Trevor Keller
  • Jonathan Guyer
  • James Warren

Group Award

For strengthening NIST safety and security by successfully implementing 100% electronic badge scanning at all Gaithersburg gates.
  • Heather Snow
  • Sue Ha
  • Tina Rieger
  • Douglas Ritchey
  • Kevin Conrad
  • Jose Sanchez, Jr.
  • Gregory Strouse

Individual Award

For developing a suite of tools and a documentary standard to support advancements and improved clinical longevity for dental composite restorations.
  • Martin Chiang

Group Award

For developing and implementing an acquisition management tool providing transparency and visibility to customers, leadership, and acquisition professionals.
  • Sherwin McAdam
  • Hing Pan Wong
  • Tracy Retterer
  • Karla Sims
  • John Furgerson
  • Daniel Dender
  • William Clark
  • Jody Sandel
  • Hong Zhang
  • Yali Zhang

Individual Award

For the invention, development, and industrial application of Intermittent Contact Resonance Atomic Force Microscopy.
  • Gheorghe Stan

Group Award

For development, application and dissemination of the Fate and Transport of Indoor Microbiological Aerosols (FaTIMA) tool in response to COVID-19.
  • W. Stuart Dols
  • Brian Polidoro
  • Dustin Poppendieck
  • Steven Emmerich
  • Lisa Ng

Group Award

For the development of cloud-based data reduction and visualization software benefiting the U.S. and international neutron scattering communities.
  • Brian Maranville
  • Paul Kienzle
  • William Ratcliff

Individual Award

For development of new Standard Reference Material cigarettes for regulatory compliance testing of the ignition propensity of residential furnishings.
  • Rick Davis

Group Award

For superior Logistics Services and Site Services support to the NIST Boulder and Gaithersburg campuses during COVID Phase I reopening planning.
  • Adrian Mitchell
  • Vivian Shirley
  • Michelle Wims
  • Jason Fellows
  • Darryl Hallman
  • James Crabill
  • Christian Colburn
  • Elaine Oliver

Group Award

For development and dissemination of the first detailed cybersecurity guidelines specifically for protecting small and medium-sized manufacturers.
  • Keith Stouffer
  • Timothy Zimmerman
  • CheeYee Tang
  • Michael Pease
  • Jeffrey Cichonski

Group Award

For developing new techniques to successfully manufacture atomic-scale electronic and quantum devices.
  • Joshua Pomeroy
  • Michael Stewart, Jr.
  • Jonathan Wyrick

Group Award

For developing an innovative simulation-based robot agility competition that has spurred breakthrough solutions to industry’s robotics challenges.
  • Craig Schlenoff
  • William Harrison
  • Anthony Downs
  • Pavlo Piliptchak
  • Murat Aksu

Group Award

For the development of the silicon nanophotonic thermometer as a robust replacement for the widely used, 150-year-old, standard resistance thermometer.
  • Nikolai N. Klimov
  • Zeeshan Ahmed
  • Tobias Herman

Group Award

For developing an innovative method to integrate human expertise with machine learning to extract manufacturing knowledge from technical data.
  • Michael Brundage
  • Thurston Sexton

Group Award

For breakthrough metrology to control and entangle atomic and molecular ions, providing powerful new approaches to quantum computing and networking.
  • Chin-wen Chou
  • David Hume
  • David Leibrandt
  • Dietrich Leibfried
  • Tara Fortier
  • Scott Diddams
  • Alejandra Collopy

Group Award

For the development of an additive manufacturing materials database and data portal to accelerate the adoption of additive manufacturing.
  • Yan Lu
  • Paul Witherell
  • Benjamin Long

Group Award

For the timely, cost-effective installation and commissioning of new equipment in the NIST Center for Nanoscale Science and Technology facility.
  • Satrick Richardson
  • Stoyan Jeliazkov
  • Peter Litwinowicz
  • Joseph Di Pasquale III

Group Award

For creating the NIST AI Community of Interest, which has galvanized cooperation across NIST to reap the benefits of AI for metrology.
  • Lawrence D. Nadel
  • Michael Garris
  • Heather Evans

Individual Award

For pioneering scanning-electron-beam imaging and spectroscopy of materials in gas and liquid media.
  • Andrei Kolmakov

Group Award

improvements in measurement science that advanced forensic detection and analysis of altered videos, audio, and imagery.
  • Jonathan Fiscus
  • Haiying Guan
  • Andrew Delgado
  • Yooyoung Lee
  • Amy N. Yates

Individual Award

For establishing a new world-class gear measurement capability in response to an urgent request from the U.S. gear manufacturing industry.
  • Dennis Everett

Group Award

For providing unparalleled technical and administrative support to enable critical information retrieval research functions worldwide.
  • Darrin Dimmick
  • Angela Ellis
  • Gabriella Gomez

Allen V. Astin Measurement Science Award

Allen Astin came to NIST in 1925 and went on to do important work in electronics and in military research, including developing proximity fuses for bombs in support of the nation’s war effort during World War II. He became the fifth NIST director in 1952. The Astin Award, first presented in 1984, is granted for outstanding achievement in the advancement of measurement science or in the delivery of measurement services.

Group Award

For advancing the metrology of arsenic, and for the development of SI-traceable arsenic SRMs, needed to ensure human health and food safety worldwide.
  • Lee Yu
  • Clay Davis
  • Savelas A. Rabb

B. Stephen Carpenter Award

The B. Stephen Carpenter award, established in 2017, is granted for outstanding achievements or contributions in building ties between NIST and the international measurement community, including other national metrology institutes and international organizations who play a role in the global measurement system.

Individual Award

For leadership in quality management for national metrology institutes and advancing the information systems of the International System of Units.
  • Sally Bruce

Edward Uhler Condon Award

The Edward Uhler Condon Award is named after the fourth director of NIST. A theoretical physicist and a prolific writer, Edward Condon produced a steady stream of articles for Scientific American, Popular Mechanics and other periodicals. First presented in 1974, the Condon Award is granted for distinguished achievement in effective written exposition in science or technology. Including, but not limited to, the demonstration of substantial scientific, technical, or technological merit, unusually effective exposition through organization and clarity of style, broad treatment of a specific subject area, or appeal to readers with a wide range of scientific or technical interests.

Individual Award

For outstanding communication of complex research and measurements in a comprehensive and clearly illustrated review of optical frequency combs.
  • Scott Diddams

Eugene Casson Crittenden Award

Eugene Crittenden joined NIST in 1904 where he worked for more than 50 years. Among other accomplishments, he helped establish international standards for photometry. The Crittenden Award gives recognition to the accomplishments of NIST technical and administrative support staff who provide services that have significant impact in support of the NIST mission.

Individual Award

For critical support and services for the NIST Gaithersburg campus fire protection systems including programming, management, maintenance, and repairs.
  • Brian Ackley

Individual Award

For sustained superior performance in operations and maintenance focusing on electrical systems on the Gaithersburg campus.
  • Tommy Armstrong

Individual Award

For outstanding support of NIST organizational development, helping make expanded learning opportunities possible for the NIST community.
  • Kelsey Knepp

Group Award

For coordinating and maintaining environmental controls during reduced operations to ensure continuity of operations to mission-critical facilities.
  • George Potts, Jr.
  • Thomas Salvermoser
  • Christopher Best
  • Stephen Coulter
  • Noli Manaloto

Group Award

For reconditioning all the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning equipment prior to the Phase 1 reopening of the NIST Gaithersburg campus.
  • Alonzo Pearson
  • Dylan Morley
  • Devin Frazier
  • Leonel Montano

Judson C. French Award

Judson French was the director of the former NIST Electronics and Electrical Engineering Laboratory, and he committed himself to the development and delivery of the very best products and services to the electronics and electrical industries. The French Award is granted for significant improvement in products delivered directly to industry, including new or improved NIST calibration services, Standard Reference Materials, and Standard Reference Databases.

Group Award

For development and characterization of a next-generation forensic DNA Standard Reference Material using a diverse suite of molecular techniques.
  • Carolyn Steffen
  • Erica Romsos
  • Katherine Gettings
  • Kevin Kiesler
  • Lisa Borsuk
  • Hariharan Iyer
  • Peter Vallone

Group Award

For their initiative in overhauling the NIST photometry facility and services to meet the demands of the rapidly growing solid-state lighting industry.
  • Vincent Lee
  • Cameron Miller
  • Bala Muralikrishnan
  • Maria Nadal
  • Benjamin Tsai
  • Yuqin Zong

Jacob Rabinow Applied Research Award

The Jacob Rabinow Applied Research Award is named after the legendary NIST inventor. Jacob Rabinow earned more than 200 U.S. patents for many different types of mechanical, optical, and electrical devices. First presented in 1975, the Rabinow Award is granted for outstanding achievements in the practical application of the results of scientific or engineering research.

Individual Award

For development and transfer to industry of tools to quantify quality attributes of manufactured fiber-based scaffolds for the regenerative medicine industry.
  • Carl Simon, Jr.

Edward Bennett Rosa Award

Edward Rosa came to NIST in 1901 to start the new electricity research division. He eventually become the organization’s chief physicist and the right hand of NIST’s first director, Samuel Stratton. The Rosa Award, established in 1964, is granted for outstanding achievements or contributions in the development of meaningful and significant engineering, scientific, or documentary standards either within NIST or in cooperation with other government agencies or private groups.

Individual Award

For leadership in the development of an international guidance document on conducting ecotoxicity testing of manufactured nanomaterials.
  • Elijah Petersen

William P. Slichter Award

The William P. Slichter Award was first presented in 1992. As a member of the Visiting Committee on Advanced Technology in the late 1980s, William Slichter was a strong advocate for NIST’s role in supporting U.S. industry. The Slichter Award is granted for outstanding achievements by NIST staff in building or strengthening ties between NIST and industry.

Group Award

For establishing the AM Bench Test Series to increase the reliability of simulations of additive manufacturing processes that are critical to industry.
  • Lyle Levine
  • Brandon Lane
  • Kalman Migler
  • Shawn Moylan
  • Mark Stoudt
  • Maureen Williams
  • Jonathan Seppala
  • Thien Phan
  • Ho Yeung
  • Sandra Young

Samuel Wesley Stratton Award

The Samuel Wesley Stratton Award was first presented in 1962. Samuel Stratton was the very first director of NIST, then known as the National Bureau of Standards. The Stratton Award recognizes an unusually significant research contribution to science or engineering that merits the acclaim of the scientific world and supports NIST’s mission objectives.

Individual Award

For seminal research on theoretical nanoscale magnetism, enabling development of spintronic read heads and nonvolatile magnetic memory for computers.
  • Mark Stiles

George A. Uriano Award

The George A. Uriano Award was first presented in 1996. George Uriano was the driving force behind NIST’s Advanced Technology Program of the 1990s and early 2000s. The Uriano Award is granted for outstanding achievements by NIST staff in building or strengthening NIST extramural programs, with emphasis on fostering U.S. competitiveness and business excellence.

Individual Award

For leadership in developing and implementing MATTR service to connect NIST Laboratory capabilities and resources with needs of small U.S. manufacturers.
  • Marlon Walker

Group Award

For establishing a program to facilitate competitiveness and innovation in the public safety communications research field.
  • Ellen Ryan
  • Terese Manley
  • Craig Connelly
  • Gary Howarth, II
  • Joanne Krumel
  • Jeremy Glenn
  • Sarah Hughes

Group Award

For establishing leader roles and building key industry partnerships to accelerate development of genome editing-based technologies to get products to market.
  • Samantha Maragh
  • Tara Eskandari

Colleagues' Choice Award

First established in 2006, the Colleague’s Choice Award is granted to non-supervisory employees at NIST who, in the eyes of their colleagues, have made significant contributions that broadly advance the NIST mission and strategic goals or broadly contribute to the overall health and effectiveness of NIST.

Individual Award

For outstanding advocacy, leadership and devotion to the forward progress of "One NIST" in science, equity, diversity and inclusion.
  • Ashley Boggs

Individual Award

For her leadership in creating the Parents Network to unite and support caregivers at NIST during a time of crucial need.
  • Laura Espinal

Group Award

For their exceptional customer service and support, enabling NIST Boulder staff to succeed while teleworking during a pandemic.
  • Jason Carr
  • Kevin Harrison
  • Anthony Lonsinger
  • Wendy Morrison
  • Laurence Pesek
  • Erin Presley-Froemke

Group Award

For rapid response and exceptional customer service enabling a smooth transition to virtual conferences/meetings during the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Richard Montgomery
  • Benjamin Jeanette
  • Joseph Nastus
  • Akeem Henry
  • Joseph Hynes
  • Kevin Hill

Director's Award for Excellence in Administration

The NIST Director’s Award for Excellence in Administration was first established in 2007. This award is granted to employees engaged in providing administrative service or carrying out administrative functions, who have made significant contributions that broadly advance the NIST mission and strategic goals through excellence in administrative services and functions.

Individual Award

For exemplary contributions and stewardship in administering NIST’s Office of Workers’ Compensation Program.
  • Dorothy Smothers

Group Award

For excellence in developing, communicating, and implementing NIST COVID-19 health and safety protocols to provide a safe working environment.
  • Stephen Banovic
  • Brian Brass
  • Michael Blumer
  • Jeffrey Good
  • Wing Wong
  • James Michael Blackmon
  • Kevin Dyrdahl
  • Jay Peterson

Distinguished Career Award

The Distinguished Career Award, established in 2017, is granted to employees who have made lasting, long-term contributions to NIST's mission and strategic goals throughout their career.

Individual Award

For a career of federal service and outstanding administrative and organizational contributions to NIST and other agencies spanning over 40 years.
  • Michele Cooley

Individual Award

For sustained excellence in the delivery of compensation and leave services, which has contributed significantly to NIST’s ability to recruit and retain a world
  • Amy E. Townsend

Distinguished Mentoring Award

Established in 2018, the Distinguished Mentoring Award recognizes the value of mentoring and the positive impact it has on the mission of NIST. The winners of the award have fostered excellence in others, through either a formal or informal mentoring relationship.

Individual Award

For mentoring and inspiring generations of young scientists to pursue the research they love, helping and inspiring them every step of the way.
  • Jennifer Lynch

Individual Award

For fostering exceptional personal and professional development of NIST staff, and unparalleled support and dedication to the NIST Mentoring Program.
  • Dileep Thatte

Diversity, Inclusivity and Equal Employment Opportunity Award

The Diversity, Inclusivity and Equal Employment Opportunity Award was first presented in 1977. Previously called the Equal Employment Opportunity/Diversity Award, the award recognizes exemplary contributions or leadership that ensure a more diverse and inclusive work environment for everyone at NIST.

Group Award

For enhancing outreach to promote diversity in NIST STEM programs, nurturing relationships with MSIs, and fostering engagement with diverse communities.
  • Jeanita Pritchett
  • Brandi Toliver
  • Kara Robinson
  • Chantale Denis

Group Award

For fostering an accessible, inclusive work environment and professional development opportunities through a volunteer effort spanning NIST campuses.
  • Amy Mensch
  • Brandi Toliver
  • Jeanita Pritchett
  • Jenise Reyes-Rodriguez
  • Ashley Beasley Green
  • Diana Ortiz-Montalvo
  • Kelley Rogers
  • Kelly Telu
  • Ileana Pazos
  • Tara Fortier

Safety Award

The NIST Safety Award was established in 1979 and recognizes NIST employees and organizations for substantial contributions to improving safety at NIST.

Organizational Award

For enabling vaccination against COVID-19 for NIST staff and regional federal employees
  • Stephen Banovic

Individual Award

For sustained superior performance in the area of safety through the identification and mitigation of hazards associated with underground utilities.
  • Christopher Gork

Group Award

For developing research-based guidelines and best practices to maximize the impact of campus ventilation systems, which prepared NIST for Phase 1 reopening.
  • Brian Brass
  • Andrew Persily
  • Steven Emmerich
  • Lisa Ng
  • Charles Bowers
  • Christian Colburn
  • Danielle Swarts
  • Carrie Kelly
  • Drew Comley
  • George Potts, Jr.

Arthur S. Flemming Award

The Arthur S. Flemming Award was established in 1948 by the Downtown Jaycees of Washington, D.C., to honor outstanding federal employees for unusually meritorious work. The award is supported by the Office of Personnel Management and is sponsored by the George Washington University and Government Executive magazine in conjunction with the Arthur S. Flemming Awards Commission.

Individual Award

Dr. Schiel led NIST scientists in developing the world's first monoclonal antibody reference material, which assures the performance of biopharmaceuticals.
  • John Schiel

Individual Award

Dr. Gorshkov’s creating strong interactions between photons gives a basis for technology using light rather than electrons to perform operations/computations.
  • Alexey Gorshkov

Presidential Rank Award

The Presidential Rank Award, created in 1978, recognizes members of the Senior Executive Service for exceptional performance over an extended period of time as well as other senior career employees with a sustained record of exceptional professional, technical, and/or scientific achievement recognized on a national or international level.

Individual Award

For outstanding leadership and pioneering contributions to fiber-based optical frequency combs for record-breaking optical time transfer and spectroscopy.
  • Nathan Newbury

Samuel J. Heyman Service to America Medal

The Service to America Medals are presented annually by the nonprofit, nonpartisan Partnership for Public Service to celebrate excellence in the federal civil service.

Individual Award

Dr. Higgins Invented a potentially revolutionary technology to detect and remedy microscopic flaws that threaten the safety/reliability of 3D-printed products.
  • Callie Higgins