Jack Gibbons, former presidential science advisor & ORNL stalwart, dies at 86


Presidential science advisor Jack Gibbons, right, talks with Oak Ridge National Laboratory Director Al Trivelpiece during a 1994 visit to Oak Ridge. (ORNL photo)

Jack Gibbons, former science advisor to President Clinton and director of the congressional Office of Technology Assessment, died on July 17 at age 86, according to news reports. Besides his distinguished government career in Washington, D.C., Gibbons held research and management positions at Oak Ridge National Laboratory for nearly two decades (1954-1973).

A number of obituary stories have been posted online at The New York Times and The Washington Post, as well as the Think Progress website.

Here’s what ORNL posted today on its website:

“John H. “Jack” Gibbons, an ORNL researcher who went on to become chief science advisor in the Clinton Administration, died July 17 in Virginia. Gibbons did research in astrophysics at ORNL, then moved to energy research before going to Washington in 1973 to lead the Federal Office of Energy Conservation. He eventually led the Office of Technology Assessment before becoming chief science advisor. He spoke in that role on a visit to Oak Ridge in 1994. Gibbons was a staunch proponent of energy efficiency research and a vocal critic of Congress’s abolishment of the OTA in the mid-’90s. Nevertheless, he was once referred to as ‘the nicest guy in Washington.’ ”


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About Frank Munger

Senior Writer Frank Munger covers the Dept. of Energy's Oak Ridge facilities and many related topics — nuclear weapons, nuclear waste and other things nuclear, environmental cleanup and science of all sorts. Atomic City Underground is, first and foremost, a news blog, but there's room for analysis, opinion and random thoughts that have no place else to go.