University of Pittsburgh
April 22, 2013

University of Pittsburgh to Hold 2013 Commencement April 28 in the Petersen Events Center

Contact: 

Sharon Blake

412-624-4364

Cell: 412-277-6926

PITTSBURGH—University of Pittsburgh Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg will welcome graduating members of the Class of 2013, faculty, trustees, alumni, staff, and invited guests, families, and friends attending Pitt’s 2013 Commencement at 1 p.m. April 28 in the Petersen Events Center, 3719 Terrace St., Oakland.

Doors will open at 11 a.m. Backpacks, packages, or oversized purses will not be permitted in the Petersen Event Center. Attendees are requested to leave these items behind because on-site storage will not be available; they also are advised to arrive early to allow plenty of time for passing through security.

Pitt alumnus Patrick D. Gallagher (A&S ’87G, ’91G), director of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), will deliver the 2013 commencement address. Gallagher assumed his current role at NIST on Nov. 20, 2009, following his nomination by President Obama and full U.S. Senate confirmation. He leads one of the nation’s oldest physical science laboratories, which promotes U.S. innovation and industrial competitiveness by advancing measurement science, standards, and technology. At the ceremony, Pitt will confer upon Gallagher the degree of Doctor of Public Service Honoris Causa.

Chief University Marshal Thomas C. Smitherman will open the ceremony leading a procession of members of the graduating class, faculty, staff, the Council of Deans, trustees, and administrative officers in full academic regalia; Smitherman is a professor of medicine and president of the University Senate at Pitt. The University Symphonic Band, under the direction of Jack R. Anderson, will provide music for the ceremony.

After the commencement address and the awarding of diplomas—presented by Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg, Pitt Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor Patricia E. Beeson, and the deans of the schools and colleges—Katherine A. Malekoff will speak on behalf of the graduating class. Malekoff, a graduating senior from the Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences, will receive the Bachelor of Arts degree in urban studies and sociology during the commencement ceremony. Following Malekoff’s remarks, Jane Allred (A&S ’71), president of the Pitt Alumni Association, will welcome the graduates as Pitt’s newest alumni.

In all, Pitt will confer approximately 6,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional degrees this year at its five campuses; Pitt-Bradford, Pitt-Greensburg, Pitt-Johnstown, and Pitt-Titusville will hold their own commencement ceremonies. Visit the commencement Web site at http://www.commencement.pitt.edu/index.html for more information.

About Patrick D. Gallagher
Gallagher earned his undergraduate degree in physics and philosophy from Benedictine College in Atchison, Ks., in 1985. He taught high school math and science in Missouri before coming to Pitt in 1986 for graduate studies in the Kenneth P. Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences. He earned his Pitt master’s and doctoral degrees in physics in 1987 and 1991, respectively, under the direction of Professor of Physics and now-Provost Emeritus James V. Maher. Gallagher did postdoctoral research at Boston University before joining NIST in 1993 as a research physicist and instrument scientist at the NIST Center for Neutron Research (NCNR), where his research interests included neutron and X-ray instrumentation and studies of soft condensed matter systems such as liquids, polymers, and gels.

Over the course of his two-decade career with NIST, Gallagher has held a number of increasingly responsible positions within the agency. In 2000, he became group leader for the NCNR’s Research Facility Operations, and in 2004, he was appointed NCNR director. A major accomplishment of his tenure as NCNR director was the successful planning and funding for a substantial expansion of the Cold Neutron Guide Hall to allow about 500 additional non-NIST researchers to use the facility each year.

From 1999 to 2001, Gallagher was a NIST agency representative at the National Science and Technology Council, where he had responsibility for such major science facilities as the Spallation Neutron Source Project and the National Ignition Facility, science funding, the government-university research partnership, radioactive waste management, radiation protection regulations, science and security at the U.S. Department of Energy National Laboratories, and laboratory reform.

Gallagher was appointed deputy director of NIST in 2008, a position he held for 13 months before being nominated to serve as director. In his current role, Gallagher directs a workforce of more than 3,000 at state-of-the-art facilities at two main locations in Maryland and Colorado. The agency also hosts about 2,600 associates and facility users from academia, industry, and other government agencies on its campuses at any given time.

Under Gallagher’s leadership, NIST has greatly expanded its participation, often in a leadership role, in collaborative efforts between government and the private sector to address major technical challenges facing the nation. NIST’s participation in these efforts stems from the agency’s long history of technical accomplishments and leadership in private-sector-led standards-development organizations and in such research fields as manufacturing engineering, cybersecurity and computer science, forensic science, and building and fire science.

Specific examples of public-private efforts initiated by NIST, often in coordination with other federal agencies, during Gallagher’s tenure as director include: accelerating the development of advanced manufacturing technologies in U.S. industry through the Advanced Manufacturing National Program Office; safeguarding individual identity and information in cyberspace though the National Strategy for Trusted Identities in Cyberspace and the National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence; and modernizing the national power grid through the Smart Grid Program.

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