Dr. Patrick Gallagher, NIST director

NIST Director Creates Blue Ribbon Safety Panel

Meeting Oct. 12 and Oct. 20, the commissioners will examine progress to date on integrating safety throughout the Commerce Department organization.

Dr. Patrick Gallagher, director of the U.S. Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology, has created an eight-member NIST Blue Ribbon Commission on Management and Safety--II and scheduled two open meetings at the two NIST campuses (Oct. 12 in Gaithersburg, Md., and Oct. 20 in Boulder, Colo.). The panel will gauge NIST's progress with addressing the findings from the original blue ribbon commission and identify additional opportunities to strengthen management and safety at NIST.

NIST is a scientific research and technology agency with about 2,900 employees and an $856.6 million budget in the current fiscal year. The meetings notice said the commission will assess progress in: making safety a core value at NIST; integrating safety with the conduct of operations in a meaningful way across organizational units; benchmarking safety protocols and performance against similar organizations with strong safety cultures; addressing a serious lack of resources for safety; and engaging a staff that is eager, willing, and ready to embrace a safety culture.

Agendas for the meetings will be posted at http://www.nist.gov/director.

Gallagher will appoint the commissioners, all of whom must be currently on the NIST Visiting Committee on Advanced Technology or have been a member of the first blue ribbon commission. Members will be experts in management, training, HR, laboratory management and safety, hazmat safety and security, emergency medical response, environmental safety, and environmental remediation.

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