Kathryn O. Johnson
Vice President and Principal Consultant, Matrix Consulting Group
Rapid City, SD

When Congress passed Public Law 105-255, sponsored by Representative Constance Morella, in October 1998 and established the Commission on the Advancement of Women and Minorities in Science,  Engineering, and Technology Development, they were seeking recommendations to:

advance the full and equitable participation of all Americans in SET education;
increase the number of qualified American scientists, engineers, and technicians by expanding the human resources pool of women, members of racial and ethnic minority groups underrepresented in these fields, and persons with disabilities; and
thereby enhance the Nation's economic capacity and technological growth in this era of global competitiveness.

Toward these goals, The Morella Commission has gathered information on the state of participation of women, minorities, and persons with disabilities from existing research, commissioned papers, leading national experts, and two public hearings and has finished their year-long examination. The Commission's report with recommendations will be released in June 2000 in the U.S. Capital. The Commission calls for a national imperative to develop a U.S. workforce that meets our Nation's strategic needs in science, engineering and technology and reflects the diversity of our population. The recommendations address pre-college preparation, access to higher education, professional life, and the public image of careers in science, engineering and technology.  The recommendations are directed to Congress, federal departments and agencies, state, Tribal and local governments, private enterprise, nonprofit organizations, and education institutions. In addition, the Commission recommends an implementation strategy that will require commitment, partnering and follow-up from government, business and academia to provide significant improvement and systemic change in the representation and advancement of women, underrepresented minorities and persons with disabilities in the science, engineering and technology workforce.

Kathryn O. Johnson, Ph.D. Geology, who has served as Vice Chair of the Congressional Commission on the Advancement of Women and Minorities in Science, Engineering, and Technology Development.   Dr. Johnson is also Vice President and Principal Consultant of Matrix Consulting Group, which provides services in geochemistry, geohydrology, and environmental science related to regulatory analysis, waste management, permitting, and remediation of soil and water with clients such as Amoco Oil Company and The Rand Corporation.  Dr. Johnson has over 20 years of environmental consulting experience including site investigations, impact assessments, data analyses and modeling studies.