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Director Biographies

Directors 2013 - 2021


Dr. Steven Dillingham (2019 - 2021): Dr. Steven Dillingham was sworn in as the 25th Census Bureau Director on January 7, 2019 and resigned from the office on January 20, 2021.

Dillingham had more than 25 years of statistical, research, senior management, and legal experience in the federal government. He previously served as Director of the Bureau of Justice Statistics and the Bureau of Transportation Statistics. Both of these agencies support national surveys in partnership with the Census Bureau.

Before joining the Census Bureau, Dillingham served as Director of the Peace Corps Office of Strategic Information, Research, and Planning. Other federal service includes directing research and planning for the Department of Justice Trustee Program, and directing surveys for the Office of Personnel Management. He was a career member of the Federal Senior Executive Service.

In addition, Dillingham was the Deputy Director for the National District Attorneys Association and Administrator of the American Prosecutors Research Institute. Dillingham has served on the faculties of the University of South Carolina and George Mason University. He is a Senior Certified Professional with the Society for Human Resource Management.

Dillingham earned his B.A. at Winthrop University, received his J.D., M.P.A., and Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina, and completed his M.B.A. at George Washington University and LL.M. at Georgetown University.

John H. Thompson John H. Thompson (2013 - 2017): A statistician and executive, Thompson had been President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago since 2008. He served as the independent research organization's Executive Vice President from 2002 to 2008. NORC, previously known as the National Opinion Research Center, collaborates with government agencies, foundations, education institutions, nonprofit organizations, and businesses to provide data and analysis that support informed decision making in key areas including health, education, criminal justice, energy, substance abuse, mental health, and the environment.

Thompson had a distinguished career at the Census Bureau from 1975 to 2002 before joining NORC. As an Associate Director, he was the senior career executive responsible for all aspects of the 2000 Census. Prior to that, Thompson served as Chief of the Decennial Management Division. He worked in the Statistical Support Division from 1987 to 1995 and the Statistical Methods Division from 1975 to 1987.

A longtime leader in the social science research community, Thompson is an elected fellow of the American Statistical Association and past chair of the association's Social Statistics Section and Committee on Fellows. He served as a member of the Committee on National Statistics at the National Academy of Sciences. He participated as a member of the Committee on National Statistics Panel on the design of the 2010 Census Program of Evaluations and Experiments and the Panel to Review the 2010 Census.

He holds both a BS and MS degree in mathematics from Virginia Tech.

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Census History Staff | Last Revised: January 05, 2022