The U.S. Department of Commerce on Feb. 17 announced the appointments of more than a dozen people joining the team overseeing implementation of the CHIPS and Science Act.
The CHIPS and Science Act, which President Biden signed into law in August 2022, provides $52.7 billion in government funding to boost U.S.-based semiconductor manufacturing and research.
The CHIPS for America team – which serve in the CHIPS Program Office and is housed within the Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) – is comprised of talent from across the public and private sectors, including leaders with experience managing large Federal programs, experts from the semiconductor industry, and executives with financial sector experience.
“We are building a team of experienced experts who will ensure CHIPS for America spurs manufacturing and innovation and revitalizes our domestic semiconductor industry while being good stewards of taxpayer dollars,” Secretary of Commerce Gina M. Raimondo said in a press release. “This group of accomplished leaders brings the diversity of experience, ideas, and backgrounds needed to secure our position as the global leader in semiconductor manufacturing and R&D for decades to come.”
Some or the new appointments include:
- Todd Fisher, who has had a 30-year career in the finance and investment industry, will serve as the chief investment officer for the CHIPS for America team. Fisher joined the Department of Commerce in 2021, becoming the program director for the American Rescue Plan (ARP) funds at the Economic Development Administration (EDA) where he was responsible for all aspects of the implementation of the EDA’s $3 billion ARP programs;
- Morgan Dwyer will serve as the chief strategy officer on the team. Previously, Dwyer led the National Security Division at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). At OSTP, Dwyer led initiatives to implement the CHIPS and Science Act, improve science and technology-focused intelligence, build the world’s best technical workforce, accelerate defense modernization, and enhance investment security and export controls.
- Rebecca Callahan will serve as the team’s director of legislative affairs. Callahan most recently worked for the U.S. House of Representatives as professional staff on the Science, Space, & Technology Committee for Former Chairwoman Eddie Bernice Johnson, D-Tex. She has also spent the last few years as a board member for Out to Innovate, a non-profit professional organization dedicated to supporting and advocating for LGBTQ+ people in STEM fields.
“CHIPS for America will put our country at the forefront of semiconductor innovation, R&D, and technology implementation, and we are excited to welcome these accomplished individuals to DOC and NIST,” said Under Secretary of Commerce for Standards and Technology and NIST Director Laurie E. Locascio. “These leaders have decades of experience across government, industry, and the R&D space and will play an essential role in standing up this historic program.”
The Biden-Harris administration also previously announced other key leaders charged with guiding the implementation of the CHIPS and Science Act, including Director of the CHIPS Program Office Mike Schmidt and Interim Director of the CHIPS Research and Development Office Eric Lin.
The staff announcement comes as the CHIPS for America team prepares to release its first Notice of Funding Opportunity this month and additional funding opportunities this year.
According to the department, the CHIPS for America team will continue hiring key staff from across the public and private sectors to ramp up implementation efforts. As positions become available, vacancy announcements will be posted on USAJOBS.gov.