NEWS12 August 2013

Thompson confirmed as US Census Bureau director

North America People

US — The Senate has unanimously confirmed John Thompson as director of the US Census Bureau.

Thompson has served as president and chief executive of the National Opinion Research Center since 2008 and will be the first director of the Bureau able to serve up to two consecutive five-year terms, thanks to the Presidential Appointment and Streamlining Appointment Act.

He also previously worked as a career staffer at the Bureau in a variety of management positions, including as the senior career officer responsible for all aspects of the 2000 Census and replaces acting director Thomas Mesenbourg who is retiring.

The Marketing Research Association welcomed Thompson’s appointment, having endorsed him once he was nominated, and noted that he was arriving at a crucial time in the planning stages for the 2020 Census and when the American Community Survey was under constant threat from Congress.

Stephen Fienberg, Maurice Falk professor of statistics at Carnegie-Mellon University, said: “Thompson is perhaps the most knowledgeable person on Census methodology, with a wealth of practical experience and a clear desire to innovate and help the Bureau move forward.”