Dr. Rita Baranwal was nominated by the President to serve as the Assistant Secretary for the Office of Nuclear Energy (ONE) and was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on June 20, 2019 (by a vote of 86 to 5),  becoming the first woman to ever lead the Office of Nuclear Energy.

In that role, Dr. Baranwal

Following her service as the #1 at ONE, Dr. Baranwal served as the

Prior to her appointment to the ONE, Dr. Baranwal served as the director for the DOE’s Gateway for Accelerated Innovation in Nuclear (GAIN) since 2016, an initiative hosted at Idaho National Laboratory. GAIN is the way the U.S. Government connects industry with national laboratories to help commercialize nuclear technologies. Under her leadership, GAIN positively impacted 112 projects and companies.

Before that, Dr. Baranwal worked for Westinghouse in the nuclear fuel division, leading a number of research and development programs. She started her career at Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory helping to develop advanced nuclear fuel materials for US naval reactors.

Dr. Baranwal has a bachelor’s degree from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in materials science and engineering and a master’s degree and Ph.D. in the same discipline from the University of Michigan.