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John E. Kelly - Chief Technology Officer

John E. Kelly

Dr. John E. Kelly is the Chief Technology Officer in the Office of Nuclear Energy, U.S. Department of Energy. He is responsible for establishing the strategic technical direction for the Office of Nuclear Energy’s (NE’s) research, development, demonstration, and deployment portfolios, integrating and coordinating NE’s technology programs, and setting the strategic goals for NE’s engagement with industry, academia, other federal agencies, and stakeholders on civilian nuclear energy technology matters.  Prior to assuming the duties of Chief Technology Officer, he was the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Nuclear Reactor Technologies.  His office was responsible for the civilian nuclear reactor research and development portfolio, which included programs on Small Modular Reactors, Light Water Reactors, and Generation IV reactors.  His office was also responsible for the design, development, and production of radioisotope power systems, principally for NASA missions.  In the international arena, Dr. Kelly is currently vice-chair and immediate past chair of the Generation IV International Forum and the former chair of the International Atomic Energy Agency’s Standing Advisory Group on Nuclear Energy.


Prior to joining the Department of Energy in 2010, Dr. Kelly spent 30 years at Sandia National Laboratories where he has been engaged in a broad spectrum of research programs in nuclear reactor safety, advanced nuclear energy technology, and national security.  


Dr. Kelly is an active member of the American Nuclear Society and served on the Nuclear Installations Safety Division in a number of leadership positions. 


Dr. Kelly received his B.S. in nuclear engineering from the University of Michigan in 1976 and his Ph.D. in nuclear engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1980.