The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has announced that manufacturing industry executive Michael F. Molnar has been appointed as the agency’s first-ever chief manufacturing officer. The manufacturing sector is critical to the U.S. economy, and the Obama Administration is committed to building domestic manufacturing capabilities to create the new products, new industries, and new jobs of the future. NIST is reportedly well-positioned to support this goal because of its unique mission to work closely with industry.

This new position will leverage NIST’s strong relationships with industry to accelerate innovation that will create 21st-century manufacturing jobs and enhance the nation’s global competitiveness. As part of this effort, the position will support the broader Advanced Manufacturing Partnership recently launched by President Obama that brings industry, universities and the federal government together to invest in emerging technologies.

“We look forward to having Mike join the NIST team,” said Patrick Gallagher, undersecretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and NIST director. “His background in manufacturing research and development, collaborative engineering, and sustainable products and processes, combined with his policy experience, make him uniquely suited for this position.”

As chief manufacturing officer, Molnar will be responsible for planning and coordination of the institute’s range of manufacturing research and services programs. He will serve as NIST’s central point of contact with the White House, the Department of Commerce, and other agencies on technical and policy issues related to manufacturing.

Molnar reportedly has extensive industrial experience, with leadership roles in manufacturing technology, advanced manufacturing engineering, metrology, and quality systems. He currently serves as director of Environmental Policy and Sustainable Development at the headquarters of Cummins Inc., a $14 billion international company that designs and manufactures commercial engines and power generation systems.

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