Susan Ballou is the program manager for Forensic Science in the Law Enforcement Standards Office (OLES) within the Office of Special Programs (OSP) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Since 2000, she has managed this program, which targets the needs of the forensic science practitioner by identifying and funding research at NIST in such areas as latent print analysis, burn patterns, computer forensics, and material standards. Her forensic crime laboratory experience spans over 27 years and includes working on case samples in the areas of toxicology, illicit drugs, serology, hairs, fibers, and DNA. She is a member of several forensic science associations. She holds fellow status with the American Academy of Forensic Science (AAFS), was past chair of the criminalistics section, had the opportunity to represent this section on the AAFS Board of Directors, and is a recipient of the AAFS Criminalistics Section's Mary E. Cowan Outstanding Service Award. She accepted the offer to join the Forensic Sciences Foundation Board of Trustees and chairs its Student Travel Grant Award Subcommittee.
She holds a B.S. in Criminal Justice from the University of New Haven and a master's degree in Biotechnology from Johns Hopkins University and maintains Diplomate Certification with the American Board of Criminalistics, the certifying agency for forensic scientists.