The U.S. Senate has confirmed Laurie Locascio, Ph.D., as the director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), following President Biden’s nomination of her for this position in 2021.
While Locascio has an extensive history working with NIST over an almost 30-year tenure, she most recently served as vice president for research for the University of Maryland—notably, the first person to hold this role for both the University of Maryland, College Park and the University of Maryland, Baltimore. She led the campuses in developing large interdisciplinary research programs while fostering technology commercialization, innovation, and economic development efforts, as well as establishing strategic partnerships with key public and private collaborators.
Locascio’s three decades at NIST saw her hold positions of rising seniority from research biomedical engineer to her most recent position as director of the Material Measurement Laboratory. She also served as chief of NIST’s Biomedical Science Division and leader of its Microfluidics Methods Group. She was recognized among colleagues at NIST as a prominent researcher and innovator, and a leader whose guidance furthered the internal scientific research and laboratory programs across two campuses in Gaithersburg, MD, and Boulder, CO.
Locascio has many years of experience working with the broader standardization community, including delivering the keynote address at the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) special event, Measuring the Impact of Voluntary Standards on Human Health and Safety, during the virtual World Standards Week events in October 2021. Additionally, she has been actively involved in nanotechnology work, serving first as the chair of the U.S. Technical Advisory Group (TAG) to ISO Technical Committee (TC) 229, Nanotechnologies, Working Group (WG) 3, Health, safety and environment, and then as the convenor of ISO TC 229, WG 3.
In 2017, Dr. Locascio was awarded the American Chemical Society Earle Barnes Award for Leadership in Chemical Research Management, as well as the Washington Academy of Sciences Special Award. She is a graduate of James Madison University, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry; the University of Utah, where she earned a master’s degree in bioengineering; and the University of Maryland, Baltimore, where she earned a doctorate degree in toxicology.
“ANSI congratulates Dr. Locascio on this tremendous and well-earned appointment,” said S. Joe Bhatia, ANSI president and CEO. “In selecting Dr. Locascio, President Biden has made a wise choice. Her comprehensive understanding of the standardization system, strengths in implementing partnerships and fostering collaboration between the public and private sectors, and impressive knowledge of science and technology will bring tremendous value to the standardization system in the U.S., and we are thrilled to build upon our working relationship with Dr. Loscacio in the years to come.”