TOP 150 SCIENCE AND TECHNology ROLES IN GOVERNMENT

The response to our recent open call for submissions has been overwhelming—over 95 people have stepped forward to share insights about nearly 250 distinct Federal S&T leadership roles and why they matter.

In the spirit of crowdsourcing, the Day One Project is excited to unveil a curated list of what we heard. This working list includes the most compelling positions and descriptions we received, but it is only a start.

We Still Need Your Help  

Following our initial open call for submissions of key S&T roles, we invite the community to continue to support the development of our top 150 list by sharing your feedback on the existing roles, and offering additional positions that we might have missed.

Background: Top 150 S&T Roles

This initial list features key science and technology roles from across the Federal Government. Included are career and noncareer appointments, high-level leadership, and overlooked positions—all designed to ensure we capture and elevate the importance of each individual and role as we look towards the next administration.

OUR TOP 150 FEDERAL S&T ROLES

 

Please share your feedback here.

Department of Agriculture

Director


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The OMB Director assists the President in overseeing the preparation of the federal budget and to supervise its administration in Executive Branch agencies. The Director plays a key role in S&T agenda-setting because they wield a great deal of influence over agency budget requests and the final shape of the President’s budget, along with the performance assessment.




Chief Performance Officer


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The CPO leads the OMB "SWAT team" dedicated to working with agencies to improve results for federal programs and eliminate waste and inefficiency. The CPO works with federal agencies to set tough performance targets and hold managers responsible for progress. The CPO needs to be someone who understands the complexity of federal government programs, has significant experience in federal programs, can navigate the bureaucracy, and fix hard problems. This role has been historically merged with that of Deputy Director for Management, who develops and executes a government-wide management agenda that includes information technology, financial management, procurement, performance, and human resources.




Federal Chief Information Officer of the United States


Presidential Appointment The U.S CIO oversees federal technology spending, federal IT policy, and strategic planning of all federal IT investments. The CIO is charged with establishing a government-wide enterprise architecture that ensures system interoperability, information sharing, and maintains effective information security and privacy controls across the Federal Government. An effective CIO needs to be well-versed in cloud technologies, data analytics, data governance, IT modernization and cybersecurity in order to serve as a point of stability and consistent direction for CIO organizations across the government.




Associate Director for National Security Programs


Noncareer Appointment The Associate Director for National Security Programs oversees all funding for defense, intelligence, international affairs, and veterans’ programs across the federal government. They oversee the preparation of a $1 trillion federal budget for the DoD, DOE’s nuclear programs, State, VA, USAID, and the Intelligence Community—and defend it before Congress. They also represent OMB on the National Security Council’s Deputies Committee, the "engine room" for the national security policymaking process for the Federal Government. The AD needs to be well-versed in the federal national security apparatus and needs to be entrepreneurial enough to advocate and advance large budget proposals to Congress.




Associate Director for Natural Resource Programs


Noncareer Appointment The Associate Director for Natural Resources supports development and execution of the President’s economic and environmental policy, and leads a team of experts overseeing a wide array of policy, budget, and management issues—including issues related to energy, agriculture, infrastructure, conservation, and technology—across a nearly $100 billion portfolio. On these issues, the Associate Director coordinates with key science agencies such DOE, USDA, DOI, EPA, NASA, NSF and other agencies—an important role with climate as a strong priority for the incoming administration.




Chief Statistician of the United States


Noncareer Appointment The Chief Statistician is charged with providing coordination, guidance, and oversight for U.S. federal statistical agencies and activities. The Chief Statistician heads the Statistical Policy Branch of the OMB's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA). The Chief Statistician does the following:

  • Coordinates, through the review of budget proposals and otherwise, the statistical functions of the Federal Government with respect to gathering, interpreting, and disseminating statistics and statistical information that are carried out in more than 100 agencies.
  • Ensures that the Federal Statistics System (FSS) is positioned to meet the increasing demand for more timely information.
  • Evaluates statistical program performance and agency compliance with government-wide policies, principles, standards, and guidelines.
  • Represents the U.S. as a member of the United Nations Statistical Commission, the OECD Committee on Statistics and Statistical Policy, and similar international statistical bodies; ensures participation by U.S. technical experts on working parties developing international statistical standards; and coordinates U.S reporting of data to international organizations.
The Chief Statistician position has been vacant since December 2019 and the impact of this vacancy has been felt throughout the FSS, highlighting the importance of this role and how essential it is to the functioning of the FSS. Official federal statistics have been called into question, without reason, frequently over the past four years and ensuring this role is fulfilled with a highly qualified candidate will go a long way to helping restore faith to the FSS and the numbers that are put out by all of the federal agencies.





 

Department of Commerce

Secretary of Transportation


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The Secretary of Transportation sets the priorities and direction of the Department; they are the chief representative of the organization to the public, press, Congress; and they manage relationships with the White House, final decision-maker. The Secretary leads the Department's efforts on research and development of new transportation technologies, in addition to working with with Congress, state representatives, and the President to implement transportation-related policies and initiatives.




Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation With direction from the Secretary, The Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology sets a research agenda and manages research along with the operating administrations. There is an opportunity for the Assistant Secretary to lead efforts to push the Operating Administrations to shift from more traditional research areas such as pavement and bridge structure, to more cutting edge research. There is an oppurtunity to leverage their bully pulpit to push the Transportation Research Board in the same direction and could restructure the Bureau of Transportation Statistics to measure areas more connected to current priorities.




Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology


Noncareer Appointment The Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology ensures that research, development, and technology activities across DOT and 40 University Transportation Centers (UTC) are fully aligned with DOT’s areas of interest. The Deputy Assistant Secretary manages DOT’s spectrum interests, including GPS and 5.9 GHz band. The Deputy Assistant Secretary guides the administration’s research and technology priorities related to transportation.




Director, Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS)


The BTS Director acts as the senior advisor to the Secretary of Transportation on data and statistics on commercial aviation, multimodal freight activity, and transportation economics. The BTS Director leads the agency’s efforts on statistics of movement including aviation and freight.




Undersecretary For Transportation Policy


The Undersecretary for Transportation Policy helps the Secretary set priorities. The Undersecretary for Transportation Policy oversees the Assistant Secretary for Research & Technology as well as several other key offices, such as the policy office, which coordinate the Secretary’s priorities across the Department including automation, connected vehicles, and data.




Administrator, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The FAA Administrator oversees all FAA functions as well as aviation research and development and next generation air traffic control systems. The Administrator also oversees items related to the construction and operation of airports, certification of personnel and aircraft, and the protection of U.S. assets involved in the launch or re-entry of space vehicles.





 
 

Department of Defense

Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition & Sustainment


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The Under Secretary for Acquisition & Sustainment is in charge of the effective acquisition system—all matters pertaining to contract administration, logistics and materiel readiness, installations and environment, operational energy, chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons, the acquisition workforce, and the defense industrial base. Focusing on rapidly responding to Combatant Commands’ needs, modernizing nuclear deterrent, executing acquisition reforms, sustaining critical weapons systems, collaborating with emerging partners, and ensuring the nation’s industrial base is robust, secure, resilient, and innovative. This position is critical to prepare, sustain and ensure the military is operationally modernized.




Under Secretary of Defense for Research & Engineering (R&E)


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation With a focus on R&D and innovation, the requirements of the Under Secretary are to provide technical and research expertise, possess a deep understanding of how to navigate the agency, and serve as a bridge for engaging and inspiring industry to work and support key initiatives and research within the Pentagon. The USD R&E is responsible for research, development, and prototyping activities across the defense enterprise, and charged with ensuring the technological superiority of the DoD. Furthermore, this individual oversees DARPA, Missile Defense Agency, the Defense Innovation Unit, the Space Development Agency, the Department of Defense Laboratory enterprise, and the Under Secretariat staff on advanced technology and capabilities. This position is key for the R&D enterprise.




Principal Director for Biotechnology


Noncareer Appointment The Principle Director for Biotechnology is the key leader in biotechnology strategy, investment, modernization, and implementation across DoD, as the senior biotech role in the Office of Under Secretary of Defense (R&D) and senior leader-advisor for each of the services and unified combatant commands. Because biotechnology is crucial, but not traditionally thought of as a defense technology, the role shapes the perspective of senior leaders and policymakers across an entire Federal S&T domain. They contribute to war game development and scenarios that would enable the risks and opportunities to be observed in the context of mission applications. This position is important for the incoming administration because it provides a service-specific perspective on requirements and priorities in biotechnology development. They are responsible for assessing, developing strategy, and implementing biotechnology modernization across each of the respective mission sets.




Under Secretary of Defense for Policy


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The Under Secretary is responsible for consistently providing responsive, forward-thinking, and insightful policy advice to the Secretary of Defense on national security objectives and priorities, oversight of military plans and operations, and in National Security Council deliberations. They assist with the Defense Technology Security Administration.




Director, Office of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation


Noncareer Appointment The CAPE Director reports directly to the Secretary of Defense and Deputy to provide analytic advice on all aspects of the defense program, including alternative weapon systems and force structures, the development and evaluation of defense program alternatives, and the cost-effectiveness of defense systems. They develop planning guidance, production of applicable programming guidance, and direction of the annual review program (e.g., Future Years Defense Program—force structure, procurement, manpower, R&D costs). Furthermore, the CAPE Director informs Joint Requirements Oversight Council, and conducts special studies, e.g. military medical care, school systems for military dependents, information technology, and defense economics.




Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Industrial Policy and Director, Office of Small Business Programs


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The Deputy DASD of Industrial Policy leads a network of over 700 small business professionals and advises on acquisition. They integrate all DoD small business initiatives and oversee the efficient and effective functioning of the Department’s Small Business Specialists and Acquisition Workforce. They provide guidance and oversight to Military Service and Agencies in creating unity of effort over DoD Small Business Strategy, part of the National Security Strategy and National Defense Strategy. Lastly, they are responsible for small business improvements and partnerships within DoD, especially with startups in tech.




Assistant Secretary of Defense for Space Policy


Schedule C Excepted Appointment The Assistant Secretary for Space Policy leads DoD space policy. This individual has full oversight over all space activities of the DoD, from procurement of launch vehicles to launch, licensing, and GPS satellites. The Assistant Secretary also leads interagency coordination on behalf of DoD.




Director, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)


Noncareer Appointment The DARPA Director leads the agency with the mission to "anticipate, explore, and achieve the concepts and technologies on which our Nation's future deterrent and defense must depend." DARPA has contributed numerous breakthroughs for national security and laid the foundation for a series of technology revolutions. Its role is as vital as ever, and it must have strong, experienced, creative leadership within the incoming Administration.




Secretary of the Air Force


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The Secretary of the Air Force is responsible for the affairs of the Air Force, including organizing, training, equipping, and providing for the welfare of 685,000 active duty, Guard, Reserve, and civilian Airmen and their families; oversees Air Force’s annual budget of more than $205 billion; directs the development of strategy and policy, risk management, weapons acquisition, tech investments, and human resource management; implements decisions of the President and Congress.





Department of Education

Director, National Institute Of Justice


Presidential Appointment NIJ is the research, development and evaluation agency of the U.S. Department of Justice— dedicated to improving knowledge and understanding of crime and justice issues through science. The NIJ Director oversees the agency’s research agenda and works towards strengthening DOJ’s evidenced-based policymaking capacity. Furthermore, they measure the impact of science investments on criminal justice policies, and encourage multidisciplinary activity across offices. They award research grants on topics related to the justice system, including policing, crime prevention, juvenile justice, corrections and sentencing, forensics, and technology.




Director, Bureau of Justice Statistics


Presidential Appointment The Bureau of Justice Statistics is the principal government entity responsible for collecting, analyzing, and publishing data related to crime nationwide. The Director oversees the dissemination of criminal justice information and manages the financial and technical support provided to state, local, and tribal governments to enhance their statistical capabilities.





 
 

Department of Energy

Secretary of Transportation


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The Secretary of Transportation sets the priorities and direction of the Department; they are the chief representative of the organization to the public, press, Congress; and they manage relationships with the White House, final decision-maker. The Secretary leads the Department's efforts on research and development of new transportation technologies, in addition to working with with Congress, state representatives, and the President to implement transportation-related policies and initiatives.




Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation With direction from the Secretary, The Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology sets a research agenda and manages research along with the operating administrations. There is an opportunity for the Assistant Secretary to lead efforts to push the Operating Administrations to shift from more traditional research areas such as pavement and bridge structure, to more cutting edge research. There is an oppurtunity to leverage their bully pulpit to push the Transportation Research Board in the same direction and could restructure the Bureau of Transportation Statistics to measure areas more connected to current priorities.




Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology


Noncareer Appointment The Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology ensures that research, development, and technology activities across DOT and 40 University Transportation Centers (UTC) are fully aligned with DOT’s areas of interest. The Deputy Assistant Secretary manages DOT’s spectrum interests, including GPS and 5.9 GHz band. The Deputy Assistant Secretary guides the administration’s research and technology priorities related to transportation.




Director, Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS)


The BTS Director acts as the senior advisor to the Secretary of Transportation on data and statistics on commercial aviation, multimodal freight activity, and transportation economics. The BTS Director leads the agency’s efforts on statistics of movement including aviation and freight.




Undersecretary For Transportation Policy


The Undersecretary for Transportation Policy helps the Secretary set priorities. The Undersecretary for Transportation Policy oversees the Assistant Secretary for Research & Technology as well as several other key offices, such as the policy office, which coordinate the Secretary’s priorities across the Department including automation, connected vehicles, and data.




Administrator, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The FAA Administrator oversees all FAA functions as well as aviation research and development and next generation air traffic control systems. The Administrator also oversees items related to the construction and operation of airports, certification of personnel and aircraft, and the protection of U.S. assets involved in the launch or re-entry of space vehicles.





 

Department of Health and Human Services

Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The USPTO Director acts as the principal advisor to the President on all intellectual property (IP) policy matters, serves as chief executive of USPTO and guides PTO’s strategic and management goals. This USPTO Director is crucial to S&T in the next administration because they steer the PTO’s direction on IP priorities—a healthy patent and trademark system is necessary for competitive innovation in technology. Director will play a critical role in aiding and supporting the implementation of administration’s policies on innovation, industrialization, research and development, food and drug, and trade.




Deputy Under Secretary and Deputy Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office


Appointment Excepted by Statute The Deputy Director acts as an advisor to the PTO Director and responsible for the operations of 4 USPTO Regional Offices, including 13,000 employees, and the management of the $3.5 Billion budget. They divide policy leadership duties with the PTO Director. They aid in steering PTO’s direction on iP priorities. Similarly, they can focus the legislative, regulatory, and international initiatives needed to support the next administration’s S&T agenda.




Chief of Staff


Noncareer Appointment The Chief of Staff acts as an advisor to the PTO Director and responsible for operational management, as well as the communication of the President’s IP agenda. Primary liaison for day-to-day policy coordination with the White House, Department of Commerce, and other agencies. They are the key bridge between administration and PTO in shaping and executing an IP agenda that values S&T. During the Obama administration, the Chief of Staff was a source of substantive counsel to the Under Secretary on S&T policy matters.




Commissioner of Patents


Career Appointment The Commissioner of Patents is the operational lead of the patents division of USPTO. Manages and directs administration of patent operations, examination policy, patent quality management, international patent cooperation, resources and planning, and budget administration. Although typically an operational role for PTO, previous Commissioners have played a substantial role in S&T policy discussions and decision making.




Deputy Commissioner for Patent Operations


Career Appointment The Deputy Commissioner for Patent Operations proves oversight to nine Patent Technology Centers including biotech and organic fields, chemical and materials engineering, computer architecture software and information security, computer networks, multiplex, cable, and cryptography, communications, semiconductor, etc. Lastly, they have oversight over priority areas of emerging technology, especially considering plans of SME reshoring and AI development.




Chief Policy Officer and Director for International Affairs


Career Appointment The Chief Policy Officer acts as an advisor to the PTO Director. The CPO manages the PTO’s domestic and international intellectual property (IP) policy activities, legislative engagement through the Office of Governmental Affairs, education and training through the through the Global Intellectual Property Academy (GIPA), global advocacy through the IP Attache Program, and economic analysis of the Office of the Chief Economist. The CPO is crucial to PTO’s leadership and participation in both domestic and international innovation policy, especially in an era of global AI competition.




General Counsel


Career Appointment The General Counsel acts as the legal advisor to the PTO Director. They oversee the Office of General Counsel, which includes the Office of the Solicitor, the Office of General Law, and the Office of Enrollment and Discipline. Represents the agency before the Federal Circuits and works with the Solicitor General and Dept. of Justice to formulate USG positions on Supreme Court litigations. They shape U.S innovation policy by intervening on behalf of the Federal Government in appellate cases that bear on substantive patent, trade secrecy, and copyright law.





Department of Homeland Security

Secretary of Transportation


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The Secretary of Transportation sets the priorities and direction of the Department; they are the chief representative of the organization to the public, press, Congress; and they manage relationships with the White House, final decision-maker. The Secretary leads the Department's efforts on research and development of new transportation technologies, in addition to working with with Congress, state representatives, and the President to implement transportation-related policies and initiatives.




Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation With direction from the Secretary, The Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology sets a research agenda and manages research along with the operating administrations. There is an opportunity for the Assistant Secretary to lead efforts to push the Operating Administrations to shift from more traditional research areas such as pavement and bridge structure, to more cutting edge research. There is an oppurtunity to leverage their bully pulpit to push the Transportation Research Board in the same direction and could restructure the Bureau of Transportation Statistics to measure areas more connected to current priorities.




Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology


Noncareer Appointment The Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology ensures that research, development, and technology activities across DOT and 40 University Transportation Centers (UTC) are fully aligned with DOT’s areas of interest. The Deputy Assistant Secretary manages DOT’s spectrum interests, including GPS and 5.9 GHz band. The Deputy Assistant Secretary guides the administration’s research and technology priorities related to transportation.




Director, Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS)


The BTS Director acts as the senior advisor to the Secretary of Transportation on data and statistics on commercial aviation, multimodal freight activity, and transportation economics. The BTS Director leads the agency’s efforts on statistics of movement including aviation and freight.




Undersecretary For Transportation Policy


The Undersecretary for Transportation Policy helps the Secretary set priorities. The Undersecretary for Transportation Policy oversees the Assistant Secretary for Research & Technology as well as several other key offices, such as the policy office, which coordinate the Secretary’s priorities across the Department including automation, connected vehicles, and data.




Administrator, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The FAA Administrator oversees all FAA functions as well as aviation research and development and next generation air traffic control systems. The Administrator also oversees items related to the construction and operation of airports, certification of personnel and aircraft, and the protection of U.S. assets involved in the launch or re-entry of space vehicles.





 
 

Department of Interior

Director


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The OMB Director assists the President in overseeing the preparation of the federal budget and to supervise its administration in Executive Branch agencies. The Director plays a key role in S&T agenda-setting because they wield a great deal of influence over agency budget requests and the final shape of the President’s budget, along with the performance assessment.




Chief Performance Officer


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The CPO leads the OMB "SWAT team" dedicated to working with agencies to improve results for federal programs and eliminate waste and inefficiency. The CPO works with federal agencies to set tough performance targets and hold managers responsible for progress. The CPO needs to be someone who understands the complexity of federal government programs, has significant experience in federal programs, can navigate the bureaucracy, and fix hard problems. This role has been historically merged with that of Deputy Director for Management, who develops and executes a government-wide management agenda that includes information technology, financial management, procurement, performance, and human resources.




Federal Chief Information Officer of the United States


Presidential Appointment The U.S CIO oversees federal technology spending, federal IT policy, and strategic planning of all federal IT investments. The CIO is charged with establishing a government-wide enterprise architecture that ensures system interoperability, information sharing, and maintains effective information security and privacy controls across the Federal Government. An effective CIO needs to be well-versed in cloud technologies, data analytics, data governance, IT modernization and cybersecurity in order to serve as a point of stability and consistent direction for CIO organizations across the government.




Associate Director for National Security Programs


Noncareer Appointment The Associate Director for National Security Programs oversees all funding for defense, intelligence, international affairs, and veterans’ programs across the federal government. They oversee the preparation of a $1 trillion federal budget for the DoD, DOE’s nuclear programs, State, VA, USAID, and the Intelligence Community—and defend it before Congress. They also represent OMB on the National Security Council’s Deputies Committee, the "engine room" for the national security policymaking process for the Federal Government. The AD needs to be well-versed in the federal national security apparatus and needs to be entrepreneurial enough to advocate and advance large budget proposals to Congress.




Associate Director for Natural Resource Programs


Noncareer Appointment The Associate Director for Natural Resources supports development and execution of the President’s economic and environmental policy, and leads a team of experts overseeing a wide array of policy, budget, and management issues—including issues related to energy, agriculture, infrastructure, conservation, and technology—across a nearly $100 billion portfolio. On these issues, the Associate Director coordinates with key science agencies such DOE, USDA, DOI, EPA, NASA, NSF and other agencies—an important role with climate as a strong priority for the incoming administration.




Chief Statistician of the United States


Noncareer Appointment The Chief Statistician is charged with providing coordination, guidance, and oversight for U.S. federal statistical agencies and activities. The Chief Statistician heads the Statistical Policy Branch of the OMB's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA). The Chief Statistician does the following:

  • Coordinates, through the review of budget proposals and otherwise, the statistical functions of the Federal Government with respect to gathering, interpreting, and disseminating statistics and statistical information that are carried out in more than 100 agencies.
  • Ensures that the Federal Statistics System (FSS) is positioned to meet the increasing demand for more timely information.
  • Evaluates statistical program performance and agency compliance with government-wide policies, principles, standards, and guidelines.
  • Represents the U.S. as a member of the United Nations Statistical Commission, the OECD Committee on Statistics and Statistical Policy, and similar international statistical bodies; ensures participation by U.S. technical experts on working parties developing international statistical standards; and coordinates U.S reporting of data to international organizations.
The Chief Statistician position has been vacant since December 2019 and the impact of this vacancy has been felt throughout the FSS, highlighting the importance of this role and how essential it is to the functioning of the FSS. Official federal statistics have been called into question, without reason, frequently over the past four years and ensuring this role is fulfilled with a highly qualified candidate will go a long way to helping restore faith to the FSS and the numbers that are put out by all of the federal agencies.





Department of Justice

Director, National Institute Of Justice


Presidential Appointment NIJ is the research, development and evaluation agency of the U.S. Department of Justice— dedicated to improving knowledge and understanding of crime and justice issues through science. The NIJ Director oversees the agency’s research agenda and works towards strengthening DOJ’s evidenced-based policymaking capacity. Furthermore, they measure the impact of science investments on criminal justice policies, and encourage multidisciplinary activity across offices. They award research grants on topics related to the justice system, including policing, crime prevention, juvenile justice, corrections and sentencing, forensics, and technology.




Director, Bureau of Justice Statistics


Presidential Appointment The Bureau of Justice Statistics is the principal government entity responsible for collecting, analyzing, and publishing data related to crime nationwide. The Director oversees the dissemination of criminal justice information and manages the financial and technical support provided to state, local, and tribal governments to enhance their statistical capabilities.





 
 

Department of Labor

Secretary of Transportation


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The Secretary of Transportation sets the priorities and direction of the Department; they are the chief representative of the organization to the public, press, Congress; and they manage relationships with the White House, final decision-maker. The Secretary leads the Department's efforts on research and development of new transportation technologies, in addition to working with with Congress, state representatives, and the President to implement transportation-related policies and initiatives.




Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation With direction from the Secretary, The Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology sets a research agenda and manages research along with the operating administrations. There is an opportunity for the Assistant Secretary to lead efforts to push the Operating Administrations to shift from more traditional research areas such as pavement and bridge structure, to more cutting edge research. There is an oppurtunity to leverage their bully pulpit to push the Transportation Research Board in the same direction and could restructure the Bureau of Transportation Statistics to measure areas more connected to current priorities.




Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology


Noncareer Appointment The Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology ensures that research, development, and technology activities across DOT and 40 University Transportation Centers (UTC) are fully aligned with DOT’s areas of interest. The Deputy Assistant Secretary manages DOT’s spectrum interests, including GPS and 5.9 GHz band. The Deputy Assistant Secretary guides the administration’s research and technology priorities related to transportation.




Director, Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS)


The BTS Director acts as the senior advisor to the Secretary of Transportation on data and statistics on commercial aviation, multimodal freight activity, and transportation economics. The BTS Director leads the agency’s efforts on statistics of movement including aviation and freight.




Undersecretary For Transportation Policy


The Undersecretary for Transportation Policy helps the Secretary set priorities. The Undersecretary for Transportation Policy oversees the Assistant Secretary for Research & Technology as well as several other key offices, such as the policy office, which coordinate the Secretary’s priorities across the Department including automation, connected vehicles, and data.




Administrator, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The FAA Administrator oversees all FAA functions as well as aviation research and development and next generation air traffic control systems. The Administrator also oversees items related to the construction and operation of airports, certification of personnel and aircraft, and the protection of U.S. assets involved in the launch or re-entry of space vehicles.





Department of State

Director, National Institute Of Justice


Presidential Appointment NIJ is the research, development and evaluation agency of the U.S. Department of Justice— dedicated to improving knowledge and understanding of crime and justice issues through science. The NIJ Director oversees the agency’s research agenda and works towards strengthening DOJ’s evidenced-based policymaking capacity. Furthermore, they measure the impact of science investments on criminal justice policies, and encourage multidisciplinary activity across offices. They award research grants on topics related to the justice system, including policing, crime prevention, juvenile justice, corrections and sentencing, forensics, and technology.




Director, Bureau of Justice Statistics


Presidential Appointment The Bureau of Justice Statistics is the principal government entity responsible for collecting, analyzing, and publishing data related to crime nationwide. The Director oversees the dissemination of criminal justice information and manages the financial and technical support provided to state, local, and tribal governments to enhance their statistical capabilities.





 
 

Department of Transportation

Secretary of Transportation


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The Secretary of Transportation sets the priorities and direction of the Department; they are the chief representative of the organization to the public, press, Congress; and they manage relationships with the White House, final decision-maker. The Secretary leads the Department's efforts on research and development of new transportation technologies, in addition to working with with Congress, state representatives, and the President to implement transportation-related policies and initiatives.




Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation With direction from the Secretary, The Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology sets a research agenda and manages research along with the operating administrations. There is an opportunity for the Assistant Secretary to lead efforts to push the Operating Administrations to shift from more traditional research areas such as pavement and bridge structure, to more cutting edge research. There is an oppurtunity to leverage their bully pulpit to push the Transportation Research Board in the same direction and could restructure the Bureau of Transportation Statistics to measure areas more connected to current priorities.




Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology


Noncareer Appointment The Deputy Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology ensures that research, development, and technology activities across DOT and 40 University Transportation Centers (UTC) are fully aligned with DOT’s areas of interest. The Deputy Assistant Secretary manages DOT’s spectrum interests, including GPS and 5.9 GHz band. The Deputy Assistant Secretary guides the administration’s research and technology priorities related to transportation.




Director, Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS)


The BTS Director acts as the senior advisor to the Secretary of Transportation on data and statistics on commercial aviation, multimodal freight activity, and transportation economics. The BTS Director leads the agency’s efforts on statistics of movement including aviation and freight.




Undersecretary For Transportation Policy


The Undersecretary for Transportation Policy helps the Secretary set priorities. The Undersecretary for Transportation Policy oversees the Assistant Secretary for Research & Technology as well as several other key offices, such as the policy office, which coordinate the Secretary’s priorities across the Department including automation, connected vehicles, and data.




Administrator, Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The FAA Administrator oversees all FAA functions as well as aviation research and development and next generation air traffic control systems. The Administrator also oversees items related to the construction and operation of airports, certification of personnel and aircraft, and the protection of U.S. assets involved in the launch or re-entry of space vehicles.





Environmental Protection Agency

Director, National Institute Of Justice


Presidential Appointment NIJ is the research, development and evaluation agency of the U.S. Department of Justice— dedicated to improving knowledge and understanding of crime and justice issues through science. The NIJ Director oversees the agency’s research agenda and works towards strengthening DOJ’s evidenced-based policymaking capacity. Furthermore, they measure the impact of science investments on criminal justice policies, and encourage multidisciplinary activity across offices. They award research grants on topics related to the justice system, including policing, crime prevention, juvenile justice, corrections and sentencing, forensics, and technology.




Director, Bureau of Justice Statistics


Presidential Appointment The Bureau of Justice Statistics is the principal government entity responsible for collecting, analyzing, and publishing data related to crime nationwide. The Director oversees the dissemination of criminal justice information and manages the financial and technical support provided to state, local, and tribal governments to enhance their statistical capabilities.





 
 

Federal Communications Commission

Director


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The OMB Director assists the President in overseeing the preparation of the federal budget and to supervise its administration in Executive Branch agencies. The Director plays a key role in S&T agenda-setting because they wield a great deal of influence over agency budget requests and the final shape of the President’s budget, along with the performance assessment.




Chief Performance Officer


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The CPO leads the OMB "SWAT team" dedicated to working with agencies to improve results for federal programs and eliminate waste and inefficiency. The CPO works with federal agencies to set tough performance targets and hold managers responsible for progress. The CPO needs to be someone who understands the complexity of federal government programs, has significant experience in federal programs, can navigate the bureaucracy, and fix hard problems. This role has been historically merged with that of Deputy Director for Management, who develops and executes a government-wide management agenda that includes information technology, financial management, procurement, performance, and human resources.




Federal Chief Information Officer of the United States


Presidential Appointment The U.S CIO oversees federal technology spending, federal IT policy, and strategic planning of all federal IT investments. The CIO is charged with establishing a government-wide enterprise architecture that ensures system interoperability, information sharing, and maintains effective information security and privacy controls across the Federal Government. An effective CIO needs to be well-versed in cloud technologies, data analytics, data governance, IT modernization and cybersecurity in order to serve as a point of stability and consistent direction for CIO organizations across the government.




Associate Director for National Security Programs


Noncareer Appointment The Associate Director for National Security Programs oversees all funding for defense, intelligence, international affairs, and veterans’ programs across the federal government. They oversee the preparation of a $1 trillion federal budget for the DoD, DOE’s nuclear programs, State, VA, USAID, and the Intelligence Community—and defend it before Congress. They also represent OMB on the National Security Council’s Deputies Committee, the "engine room" for the national security policymaking process for the Federal Government. The AD needs to be well-versed in the federal national security apparatus and needs to be entrepreneurial enough to advocate and advance large budget proposals to Congress.




Associate Director for Natural Resource Programs


Noncareer Appointment The Associate Director for Natural Resources supports development and execution of the President’s economic and environmental policy, and leads a team of experts overseeing a wide array of policy, budget, and management issues—including issues related to energy, agriculture, infrastructure, conservation, and technology—across a nearly $100 billion portfolio. On these issues, the Associate Director coordinates with key science agencies such DOE, USDA, DOI, EPA, NASA, NSF and other agencies—an important role with climate as a strong priority for the incoming administration.




Chief Statistician of the United States


Noncareer Appointment The Chief Statistician is charged with providing coordination, guidance, and oversight for U.S. federal statistical agencies and activities. The Chief Statistician heads the Statistical Policy Branch of the OMB's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA). The Chief Statistician does the following:

  • Coordinates, through the review of budget proposals and otherwise, the statistical functions of the Federal Government with respect to gathering, interpreting, and disseminating statistics and statistical information that are carried out in more than 100 agencies.
  • Ensures that the Federal Statistics System (FSS) is positioned to meet the increasing demand for more timely information.
  • Evaluates statistical program performance and agency compliance with government-wide policies, principles, standards, and guidelines.
  • Represents the U.S. as a member of the United Nations Statistical Commission, the OECD Committee on Statistics and Statistical Policy, and similar international statistical bodies; ensures participation by U.S. technical experts on working parties developing international statistical standards; and coordinates U.S reporting of data to international organizations.
The Chief Statistician position has been vacant since December 2019 and the impact of this vacancy has been felt throughout the FSS, highlighting the importance of this role and how essential it is to the functioning of the FSS. Official federal statistics have been called into question, without reason, frequently over the past four years and ensuring this role is fulfilled with a highly qualified candidate will go a long way to helping restore faith to the FSS and the numbers that are put out by all of the federal agencies.





Federal Trade Commission

Director


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The OMB Director assists the President in overseeing the preparation of the federal budget and to supervise its administration in Executive Branch agencies. The Director plays a key role in S&T agenda-setting because they wield a great deal of influence over agency budget requests and the final shape of the President’s budget, along with the performance assessment.




Chief Performance Officer


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The CPO leads the OMB "SWAT team" dedicated to working with agencies to improve results for federal programs and eliminate waste and inefficiency. The CPO works with federal agencies to set tough performance targets and hold managers responsible for progress. The CPO needs to be someone who understands the complexity of federal government programs, has significant experience in federal programs, can navigate the bureaucracy, and fix hard problems. This role has been historically merged with that of Deputy Director for Management, who develops and executes a government-wide management agenda that includes information technology, financial management, procurement, performance, and human resources.




Federal Chief Information Officer of the United States


Presidential Appointment The U.S CIO oversees federal technology spending, federal IT policy, and strategic planning of all federal IT investments. The CIO is charged with establishing a government-wide enterprise architecture that ensures system interoperability, information sharing, and maintains effective information security and privacy controls across the Federal Government. An effective CIO needs to be well-versed in cloud technologies, data analytics, data governance, IT modernization and cybersecurity in order to serve as a point of stability and consistent direction for CIO organizations across the government.




Associate Director for National Security Programs


Noncareer Appointment The Associate Director for National Security Programs oversees all funding for defense, intelligence, international affairs, and veterans’ programs across the federal government. They oversee the preparation of a $1 trillion federal budget for the DoD, DOE’s nuclear programs, State, VA, USAID, and the Intelligence Community—and defend it before Congress. They also represent OMB on the National Security Council’s Deputies Committee, the "engine room" for the national security policymaking process for the Federal Government. The AD needs to be well-versed in the federal national security apparatus and needs to be entrepreneurial enough to advocate and advance large budget proposals to Congress.




Associate Director for Natural Resource Programs


Noncareer Appointment The Associate Director for Natural Resources supports development and execution of the President’s economic and environmental policy, and leads a team of experts overseeing a wide array of policy, budget, and management issues—including issues related to energy, agriculture, infrastructure, conservation, and technology—across a nearly $100 billion portfolio. On these issues, the Associate Director coordinates with key science agencies such DOE, USDA, DOI, EPA, NASA, NSF and other agencies—an important role with climate as a strong priority for the incoming administration.




Chief Statistician of the United States


Noncareer Appointment The Chief Statistician is charged with providing coordination, guidance, and oversight for U.S. federal statistical agencies and activities. The Chief Statistician heads the Statistical Policy Branch of the OMB's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA). The Chief Statistician does the following:

  • Coordinates, through the review of budget proposals and otherwise, the statistical functions of the Federal Government with respect to gathering, interpreting, and disseminating statistics and statistical information that are carried out in more than 100 agencies.
  • Ensures that the Federal Statistics System (FSS) is positioned to meet the increasing demand for more timely information.
  • Evaluates statistical program performance and agency compliance with government-wide policies, principles, standards, and guidelines.
  • Represents the U.S. as a member of the United Nations Statistical Commission, the OECD Committee on Statistics and Statistical Policy, and similar international statistical bodies; ensures participation by U.S. technical experts on working parties developing international statistical standards; and coordinates U.S reporting of data to international organizations.
The Chief Statistician position has been vacant since December 2019 and the impact of this vacancy has been felt throughout the FSS, highlighting the importance of this role and how essential it is to the functioning of the FSS. Official federal statistics have been called into question, without reason, frequently over the past four years and ensuring this role is fulfilled with a highly qualified candidate will go a long way to helping restore faith to the FSS and the numbers that are put out by all of the federal agencies.





 

National Aeronautics and Aerospace Administration

Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The USPTO Director acts as the principal advisor to the President on all intellectual property (IP) policy matters, serves as chief executive of USPTO and guides PTO’s strategic and management goals. This USPTO Director is crucial to S&T in the next administration because they steer the PTO’s direction on IP priorities—a healthy patent and trademark system is necessary for competitive innovation in technology. Director will play a critical role in aiding and supporting the implementation of administration’s policies on innovation, industrialization, research and development, food and drug, and trade.




Deputy Under Secretary and Deputy Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office


Appointment Excepted by Statute The Deputy Director acts as an advisor to the PTO Director and responsible for the operations of 4 USPTO Regional Offices, including 13,000 employees, and the management of the $3.5 Billion budget. They divide policy leadership duties with the PTO Director. They aid in steering PTO’s direction on iP priorities. Similarly, they can focus the legislative, regulatory, and international initiatives needed to support the next administration’s S&T agenda.




Chief of Staff


Noncareer Appointment The Chief of Staff acts as an advisor to the PTO Director and responsible for operational management, as well as the communication of the President’s IP agenda. Primary liaison for day-to-day policy coordination with the White House, Department of Commerce, and other agencies. They are the key bridge between administration and PTO in shaping and executing an IP agenda that values S&T. During the Obama administration, the Chief of Staff was a source of substantive counsel to the Under Secretary on S&T policy matters.




Commissioner of Patents


Career Appointment The Commissioner of Patents is the operational lead of the patents division of USPTO. Manages and directs administration of patent operations, examination policy, patent quality management, international patent cooperation, resources and planning, and budget administration. Although typically an operational role for PTO, previous Commissioners have played a substantial role in S&T policy discussions and decision making.




Deputy Commissioner for Patent Operations


Career Appointment The Deputy Commissioner for Patent Operations proves oversight to nine Patent Technology Centers including biotech and organic fields, chemical and materials engineering, computer architecture software and information security, computer networks, multiplex, cable, and cryptography, communications, semiconductor, etc. Lastly, they have oversight over priority areas of emerging technology, especially considering plans of SME reshoring and AI development.




Chief Policy Officer and Director for International Affairs


Career Appointment The Chief Policy Officer acts as an advisor to the PTO Director. The CPO manages the PTO’s domestic and international intellectual property (IP) policy activities, legislative engagement through the Office of Governmental Affairs, education and training through the through the Global Intellectual Property Academy (GIPA), global advocacy through the IP Attache Program, and economic analysis of the Office of the Chief Economist. The CPO is crucial to PTO’s leadership and participation in both domestic and international innovation policy, especially in an era of global AI competition.




General Counsel


Career Appointment The General Counsel acts as the legal advisor to the PTO Director. They oversee the Office of General Counsel, which includes the Office of the Solicitor, the Office of General Law, and the Office of Enrollment and Discipline. Represents the agency before the Federal Circuits and works with the Solicitor General and Dept. of Justice to formulate USG positions on Supreme Court litigations. They shape U.S innovation policy by intervening on behalf of the Federal Government in appellate cases that bear on substantive patent, trade secrecy, and copyright law.





 
 

National Science Foundation

Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The USPTO Director acts as the principal advisor to the President on all intellectual property (IP) policy matters, serves as chief executive of USPTO and guides PTO’s strategic and management goals. This USPTO Director is crucial to S&T in the next administration because they steer the PTO’s direction on IP priorities—a healthy patent and trademark system is necessary for competitive innovation in technology. Director will play a critical role in aiding and supporting the implementation of administration’s policies on innovation, industrialization, research and development, food and drug, and trade.




Deputy Under Secretary and Deputy Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office


Appointment Excepted by Statute The Deputy Director acts as an advisor to the PTO Director and responsible for the operations of 4 USPTO Regional Offices, including 13,000 employees, and the management of the $3.5 Billion budget. They divide policy leadership duties with the PTO Director. They aid in steering PTO’s direction on iP priorities. Similarly, they can focus the legislative, regulatory, and international initiatives needed to support the next administration’s S&T agenda.




Chief of Staff


Noncareer Appointment The Chief of Staff acts as an advisor to the PTO Director and responsible for operational management, as well as the communication of the President’s IP agenda. Primary liaison for day-to-day policy coordination with the White House, Department of Commerce, and other agencies. They are the key bridge between administration and PTO in shaping and executing an IP agenda that values S&T. During the Obama administration, the Chief of Staff was a source of substantive counsel to the Under Secretary on S&T policy matters.




Commissioner of Patents


Career Appointment The Commissioner of Patents is the operational lead of the patents division of USPTO. Manages and directs administration of patent operations, examination policy, patent quality management, international patent cooperation, resources and planning, and budget administration. Although typically an operational role for PTO, previous Commissioners have played a substantial role in S&T policy discussions and decision making.




Deputy Commissioner for Patent Operations


Career Appointment The Deputy Commissioner for Patent Operations proves oversight to nine Patent Technology Centers including biotech and organic fields, chemical and materials engineering, computer architecture software and information security, computer networks, multiplex, cable, and cryptography, communications, semiconductor, etc. Lastly, they have oversight over priority areas of emerging technology, especially considering plans of SME reshoring and AI development.




Chief Policy Officer and Director for International Affairs


Career Appointment The Chief Policy Officer acts as an advisor to the PTO Director. The CPO manages the PTO’s domestic and international intellectual property (IP) policy activities, legislative engagement through the Office of Governmental Affairs, education and training through the through the Global Intellectual Property Academy (GIPA), global advocacy through the IP Attache Program, and economic analysis of the Office of the Chief Economist. The CPO is crucial to PTO’s leadership and participation in both domestic and international innovation policy, especially in an era of global AI competition.




General Counsel


Career Appointment The General Counsel acts as the legal advisor to the PTO Director. They oversee the Office of General Counsel, which includes the Office of the Solicitor, the Office of General Law, and the Office of Enrollment and Discipline. Represents the agency before the Federal Circuits and works with the Solicitor General and Dept. of Justice to formulate USG positions on Supreme Court litigations. They shape U.S innovation policy by intervening on behalf of the Federal Government in appellate cases that bear on substantive patent, trade secrecy, and copyright law.





Office of Management and Budget

Director


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The OMB Director assists the President in overseeing the preparation of the federal budget and to supervise its administration in Executive Branch agencies. The Director plays a key role in S&T agenda-setting because they wield a great deal of influence over agency budget requests and the final shape of the President’s budget, along with the performance assessment.




Chief Performance Officer


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The CPO leads the OMB "SWAT team" dedicated to working with agencies to improve results for federal programs and eliminate waste and inefficiency. The CPO works with federal agencies to set tough performance targets and hold managers responsible for progress. The CPO needs to be someone who understands the complexity of federal government programs, has significant experience in federal programs, can navigate the bureaucracy, and fix hard problems. This role has been historically merged with that of Deputy Director for Management, who develops and executes a government-wide management agenda that includes information technology, financial management, procurement, performance, and human resources.




Federal Chief Information Officer of the United States


Presidential Appointment The U.S CIO oversees federal technology spending, federal IT policy, and strategic planning of all federal IT investments. The CIO is charged with establishing a government-wide enterprise architecture that ensures system interoperability, information sharing, and maintains effective information security and privacy controls across the Federal Government. An effective CIO needs to be well-versed in cloud technologies, data analytics, data governance, IT modernization and cybersecurity in order to serve as a point of stability and consistent direction for CIO organizations across the government.




Associate Director for National Security Programs


Noncareer Appointment The Associate Director for National Security Programs oversees all funding for defense, intelligence, international affairs, and veterans’ programs across the federal government. They oversee the preparation of a $1 trillion federal budget for the DoD, DOE’s nuclear programs, State, VA, USAID, and the Intelligence Community—and defend it before Congress. They also represent OMB on the National Security Council’s Deputies Committee, the "engine room" for the national security policymaking process for the Federal Government. The AD needs to be well-versed in the federal national security apparatus and needs to be entrepreneurial enough to advocate and advance large budget proposals to Congress.




Associate Director for Natural Resource Programs


Noncareer Appointment The Associate Director for Natural Resources supports development and execution of the President’s economic and environmental policy, and leads a team of experts overseeing a wide array of policy, budget, and management issues—including issues related to energy, agriculture, infrastructure, conservation, and technology—across a nearly $100 billion portfolio. On these issues, the Associate Director coordinates with key science agencies such DOE, USDA, DOI, EPA, NASA, NSF and other agencies—an important role with climate as a strong priority for the incoming administration.




Chief Statistician of the United States


Noncareer Appointment The Chief Statistician is charged with providing coordination, guidance, and oversight for U.S. federal statistical agencies and activities. The Chief Statistician heads the Statistical Policy Branch of the OMB's Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA). The Chief Statistician does the following:

  • Coordinates, through the review of budget proposals and otherwise, the statistical functions of the Federal Government with respect to gathering, interpreting, and disseminating statistics and statistical information that are carried out in more than 100 agencies.
  • Ensures that the Federal Statistics System (FSS) is positioned to meet the increasing demand for more timely information.
  • Evaluates statistical program performance and agency compliance with government-wide policies, principles, standards, and guidelines.
  • Represents the U.S. as a member of the United Nations Statistical Commission, the OECD Committee on Statistics and Statistical Policy, and similar international statistical bodies; ensures participation by U.S. technical experts on working parties developing international statistical standards; and coordinates U.S reporting of data to international organizations.
The Chief Statistician position has been vacant since December 2019 and the impact of this vacancy has been felt throughout the FSS, highlighting the importance of this role and how essential it is to the functioning of the FSS. Official federal statistics have been called into question, without reason, frequently over the past four years and ensuring this role is fulfilled with a highly qualified candidate will go a long way to helping restore faith to the FSS and the numbers that are put out by all of the federal agencies.





 

Office of Science and Technology Policy

Director, National Institute Of Justice


Presidential Appointment NIJ is the research, development and evaluation agency of the U.S. Department of Justice— dedicated to improving knowledge and understanding of crime and justice issues through science. The NIJ Director oversees the agency’s research agenda and works towards strengthening DOJ’s evidenced-based policymaking capacity. Furthermore, they measure the impact of science investments on criminal justice policies, and encourage multidisciplinary activity across offices. They award research grants on topics related to the justice system, including policing, crime prevention, juvenile justice, corrections and sentencing, forensics, and technology.




Director, Bureau of Justice Statistics


Presidential Appointment The Bureau of Justice Statistics is the principal government entity responsible for collecting, analyzing, and publishing data related to crime nationwide. The Director oversees the dissemination of criminal justice information and manages the financial and technical support provided to state, local, and tribal governments to enhance their statistical capabilities.





 

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office


Presidential Appointment with Senate Confirmation The USPTO Director acts as the principal advisor to the President on all intellectual property (IP) policy matters, serves as chief executive of USPTO and guides PTO’s strategic and management goals. This USPTO Director is crucial to S&T in the next administration because they steer the PTO’s direction on IP priorities—a healthy patent and trademark system is necessary for competitive innovation in technology. Director will play a critical role in aiding and supporting the implementation of administration’s policies on innovation, industrialization, research and development, food and drug, and trade.




Deputy Under Secretary and Deputy Director of the United States Patent and Trademark Office


Appointment Excepted by Statute The Deputy Director acts as an advisor to the PTO Director and responsible for the operations of 4 USPTO Regional Offices, including 13,000 employees, and the management of the $3.5 Billion budget. They divide policy leadership duties with the PTO Director. They aid in steering PTO’s direction on iP priorities. Similarly, they can focus the legislative, regulatory, and international initiatives needed to support the next administration’s S&T agenda.




Chief of Staff


Noncareer Appointment The Chief of Staff acts as an advisor to the PTO Director and responsible for operational management, as well as the communication of the President’s IP agenda. Primary liaison for day-to-day policy coordination with the White House, Department of Commerce, and other agencies. They are the key bridge between administration and PTO in shaping and executing an IP agenda that values S&T. During the Obama administration, the Chief of Staff was a source of substantive counsel to the Under Secretary on S&T policy matters.




Commissioner of Patents


Career Appointment The Commissioner of Patents is the operational lead of the patents division of USPTO. Manages and directs administration of patent operations, examination policy, patent quality management, international patent cooperation, resources and planning, and budget administration. Although typically an operational role for PTO, previous Commissioners have played a substantial role in S&T policy discussions and decision making.




Deputy Commissioner for Patent Operations


Career Appointment The Deputy Commissioner for Patent Operations proves oversight to nine Patent Technology Centers including biotech and organic fields, chemical and materials engineering, computer architecture software and information security, computer networks, multiplex, cable, and cryptography, communications, semiconductor, etc. Lastly, they have oversight over priority areas of emerging technology, especially considering plans of SME reshoring and AI development.




Chief Policy Officer and Director for International Affairs


Career Appointment The Chief Policy Officer acts as an advisor to the PTO Director. The CPO manages the PTO’s domestic and international intellectual property (IP) policy activities, legislative engagement through the Office of Governmental Affairs, education and training through the through the Global Intellectual Property Academy (GIPA), global advocacy through the IP Attache Program, and economic analysis of the Office of the Chief Economist. The CPO is crucial to PTO’s leadership and participation in both domestic and international innovation policy, especially in an era of global AI competition.




General Counsel


Career Appointment The General Counsel acts as the legal advisor to the PTO Director. They oversee the Office of General Counsel, which includes the Office of the Solicitor, the Office of General Law, and the Office of Enrollment and Discipline. Represents the agency before the Federal Circuits and works with the Solicitor General and Dept. of Justice to formulate USG positions on Supreme Court litigations. They shape U.S innovation policy by intervening on behalf of the Federal Government in appellate cases that bear on substantive patent, trade secrecy, and copyright law.





 

Share Your Ideas

Crowdsourced input generated this initial list, but we need your help refining it. Over the coming weeks, we will continue to add additional positions and update the descriptions for our initial list.


Using the form below, we want your feedback on the positions and existing descriptions—if there is something we missed, let us know!  We are looking for any additional insights into why these roles matter and will continue to take ideas on other key positions that did not make our initial list.

 

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