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U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology, Dr. Willie May, hosted on a tour at Stonehenge during a distinguished visit to the United Kingdom’s National Physical Laboratory (NPL).

Willie with the NIST Presidential Early Career Award winners Joseph Kline, Ana Maria Rey and Gretchen Campbell (L-R) at a breakfast before the White House ceremony in Washington, D.C. in April 2014. The award is the highest honor bestowed by the US government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their research careers.

WEM laboratory teaching in Maryland

Willie E. May, then Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and NIST Director, met with Charlottesville High School students participating in a STEM program to celebrate Manufacturing Day 2015. Through the program, the students created 3D printed plastic components to make prosthetic hands for children in need.

Willie giving the graduation address at University of Maryland, College Park in December, 2015.

Dr. May in Beijing in 2002 to lead a peer review of the chemistry program of China's National Institute of Metrology.

Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology Willie May Joins Their Majesties, King Willem-Alexander and Queen Máxima of the Netherlands at Global Cities Expo

Dr. May, one of nation’s leaders in trace organic measurement science in the 1970’s and 1980’s in the laboratory at the National Bureau of Standards.

Dr. May with the 2013 NIST Class of Summer Undergraduate Research Fellows on the U.S. Capitol Hill House Building.

Drs. Ian Gilmore and J.T. Janssen, Senior Fellow and Scientific Director, respectively, of the United Kingdom’s National Physical Laboratory with Dr. May.

Dr. May as the Vice President of the International Committee on Weights and Measures is with committee members at the 104th meeting in 2015 at the Parc de Saint-Cloud, Sevres, France.

Dr. May supporting the 2016 Combined Federal Campaign with the Bureau of Industry and Security.

Dr. May with Eric Hirschhorn, Under Secretary of Commerce for Bureau of Industry and Security, supporting charitable giving.

Dr. May with Secretary Mike Gill, Maryland Secretary of Commerce, congratulating the team at the NIST Center for Neutron Research on establishing a consortium for solving problems in the manufacturing of polymers in April 2016.

Dr. May testifies before the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology’s Subcommittee on Research & Technology in March 2016 on the FY 2017 budget request for NIST, advocating for the revitalization of American manufacturing and expansion of technology transfer activities.

When visiting the National Synchrotron Light Source II at Brookhaven National Laboratory in August 2016, Dr. May engages in lively discussions on synchrotron science with Dr. Dan Fischer, Group Leader, and staff.

Dr. May delivering invited lecture, “NIST activities for the realization and dissemination of the new international system of units (SI)” to an audience of over 800 at the National Convention Center in Beijing, China as part of A Symposium entitled “From Artefacts to Atoms (Quantum)” on August 31, 2017. The audience included Chinese regulators, academia, industries and the general public with an understanding of the SI, it’s evolution and role in today’s world, and its future trends.

Willie with members of International Advisory Board of the National Institute of Metrology China on August 29, 2017 visiting NIM’s new torque facility.

Wille and other members of the International Advisory Board of the National Institute of Metrology China on the Hepingli City Campus in Beijing on August 31, 2017 at the conclusion of the 9th IAB Meeting. From left to right, Yuning Duan, Deputy Director of NIM , Terry Quinn, Emeritus Director of the BIPM, Brian Bowsher, Former Director of the National Physical Laboratory UK, Joachim Ulrich, Director of PTB Germany and Vice President of the CIPM, Willie May.

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Willie May - A Life of Service

U.S. Government's Top Chemist

Chemical Society of Washington Section
Director Special Research and Training Initiatives, College of Computer, Mathematical and the Natural Sciences
University of Maryland College Park

Emeritus Director National Institute of Standards and Technology

Former Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology


The American Chemical Society is one of the most important voices for science and technology in the world. It has a vast international reach and some of the most influential publications in any S&T field.

The University of Maryland Baltimore County President Freeman Hrabowski leads students in a salute to Dr. May on the day of his retirement from NIST, January 3, 2017

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Montanuniversitaet Leoben, Austria faculty congratulate their colleague, Willie May, on becoming the ACS President-Elect nominee. They note that as the Head of the Analytical Chemistry Division and later as U.S. Director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology, and Undersecretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology, Willie gave great support to the Cooperation on International Traceability in Analytical Chemistry ( from the very beginning by providing expertise and substantially helping to shape the symposia programs.

University of Alabama's commencement ceremony, held Dec. 11, 2016, took place at the Von Braun Center Propst Arena and featured NIST Director Dr. Willie E. May as the guest speaker.

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