Skip to main content
U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government

Official websites use .gov
A .gov website belongs to an official government organization in the United States.

Secure .gov websites use HTTPS
A lock ( ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .gov website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Therese P. McAllister (Fed)

Community Resilience Group Leader and Program Manager

Dr. Therese McAllister is the Community Resilience Group Leader in the Materials and Structural Systems Research Division of the Engineering Laboratory (EL) at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). She is also the Technical Point of Contact for the NIST funded Center of Excellence, Center for Risk-Based Community Resilience Planning led by Colorado State University. 

Dr. McAllister conducts research on community resilience, with a focus on the integrated performance of physical infrastructure systems and social and economic systems. She has expertise in structural reliability, risk assessment, and failure analysis of buildings and infrastructure systems. She conducted detailed studies of the WTC disaster, Hurricane Katrina flooding in New Orleans, and Hurricane Sandy flood effects on infrastructure systems. Prior to joining NIST, she conducted forensic studies of structural failures.

Dr. McAllister has specialized expertise in the performance of structures in fire, including nonlinear finite element modeling of structural systems, temperature-dependent material models, and thermally-induced failure modes. Her research includes performance-based methodologies for structures subject to fire. Dr. McAllister was editor of the FEMA World Trade Center Building Performance Study and the Co-Leader for the Structural Fire Response and Collapse of WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 7 of the NIST World Trade Center Investigation.  

She serves on standard and technical committees of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and has served on the International Code Council (ICC) Structural Committee. Dr. McAllister is an ASCE Structural Engineering Institute Fellow and a registered professional engineer in Maryland.


2022 Distinguished Member of ASCE

2021 ASCE Walter P Moore, Jr. Award in recognition of demonstrated technical expertise in and dedication to the development of structural codes and standards 

2018 ASCE Ernest E Howard Award for paper by Lounis and McAllister on risk-based decision making for sustainable and resilient infrastructure systems

2016   U.S. DOC Silver Medal for leadership in developing the NIST Community Resilience Planning Guide for Buildings and Infrastructure Systems

2008   U.S. DOC Special Act Award for distinguished contributions to the investigation of the World Trade Center building collapse

2005   USACE Commander's Award for Public Service for service to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) risk analysis team for the levees around New Orleans

2005   U.S. DOC Gold Medal Award for contributions to the federal investigation of the World Trade Center disaster


IN-CORE v1.0.0 Released!

Following several years of development as part of the NIST-funded Center for Risk-Based Community Resilience Planning (CoE), the Interdependent Networked


Workshop on Incorporating Climate Change Data in U.S. Building Codes and Standards

Jason D. Averill, Therese P. McAllister, Andrew K. Persily, Scott Weaver, James Whetstone, Jiann C. Yang, Michael Kuperberg, Sumant Nigam, Alfredo Ruiz-Barradas
NIST hosted a workshop to advance the availability of climate information sought by organizations developing standards, model building codes, and voluntary
Created October 9, 2019, Updated December 8, 2022