United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment
Home > About NRC > Our Organization > Nuclear Security and Incident Response

Nuclear Security and Incident Response

On this Page:

Office of Nuclear Security and Incident Response

Director: Brian Holian
Deputy Director: Steve West

Develops overall agency policy and provides management direction for evaluation and assessment of technical issues involving security at nuclear facilities, and is the agency safeguards and security interface with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the Intelligence and Law Enforcement Communities, Department of Energy (DOE), and other agencies. Develops emergency preparedness policies, regulations, programs, and guidelines for both currently licensed nuclear reactors and potential new nuclear reactors. Provides technical expertise regarding emergency preparedness issues and interpretations, conducts and directs the NRC program for response to incidents, and is the agency emergency preparedness and incident response interface with the DHS, Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and other Federal agencies.

To top of page


Cyber Security Directorate

Director: Jim Andersen
Deputy Director: James Beardsley (Acting)

Plans, coordinates, and manages agency-wide activities related to cyber security at NRC licensee facilities. Responsible for rulemaking, licensing, addressing policy issues, and providing guidance and oversight related to cyber security requirements for power reactors. Conducts technical reviews of licensee cyber security plans and adherence to regulations and develops review plans to establish standards and ensure consistency in the review of licensing applications. Works closely with other federal agencies, including other independent regulatory agencies, and nongovernmental entities to investigate cyber incidents, share best practices, reduce burdens, and address potential issues in this rapidly evolving field.

To top of page


Program Management, Policy Development and Analysis Staff

Director: Jenny Gallo (Acting)

Provides leadership and manages strategic and long-range program planning, budget development, financial management, performance monitoring, internal control reviews, human resource analysis, information management, resource control, and other administrative services such as records management, Freedom of Information Act coordination, facilities coordination, and management of principal correspondence. Provides direction and coordination of general administrative matters, and information management and technology functions and responsibilities delegated to the office. Reviews and recommends general administrative procedures. Provides independent review of office policy papers and issues to ensure completeness, promptness, accuracy, and adherence to agency and office policy.

To top of page


Division of Security Policy

Director: Melanie Galloway
Deputy Director: (Vacant)

Oversees the development of security policy, guidance, and licensing activities for NRC licensees. Activities include conducting required reviews of licensee and applicant submitted security-related plans (physical protection, contingency, and training & qualification plans); licensing activities (e.g., processing 10 CFR 50.90 submittals and exemption requests, reviewing security plans submitted under 50.54(p)). Coordinates with the Division of Security Operations to ensure that all aspects of policy, oversight, and threat information are integrated into technical support activities to deter and protect against threats of radiological sabotage and theft or diversion of special nuclear material. Coordinates the planning and coordination of security contingencies at NRC-licensed facilities with the Department of Homeland Security.

To top of page

Reactor Security Branch

Chief: Alison Rivera

Plans, coordinates, and manages licensing reviews for currently licensed power reactors and reviews applications for early site permits, design certifications, and combined operating licenses for new and advanced reactors. Conducts technical reviews of licensee physical security plans, contingency plans, and training and qualification plans. Develops standard review plans to establish standards and ensure consistency in the review of licensing and application submittals. Evaluates the merits of endorsing industry-submitted documents that will serve as templates for reactor licensees to use so submittals are standardized and consistent. Works closely with other Federal agencies, such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Department of Homeland Security, to coordinate and enhance integrated law enforcement integrated response activities. Plans, coordinates, and manages the programs for access authorization at NRC-licensed facilities, limited work authorizations, and for licensed nuclear material. Maintains office liaison with NRO for emerging developments in advanced reactors.

Materials and Waste Security Branch

Chief: Timothy Mossman

Plans, coordinates, and manages the overall development and implementation of policies, guidance, and licensing, for security at independent spent fuel storage installations, decommissioned power reactors, other licensed radioactive material, waste processing, storage and disposal facilities. Conducts physical protection technical and regulatory reviews in support of regulatory programs, rulemaking and licensing activities for the use, storage, and disposal of nuclear and radioactive materials. Coordinates intergovernmental activities with the Departments of Homeland Security, Energy, and State to and exchange security-related information and support security initiatives. Coordinates power reactor security rulemaking and guidance development activities for the division to ensure that agency-established processes are being followed. Manages contracts and budget execution activities for the division.

Fuel Cycle and Transportation Security Branch

Chief: William Gott

Plans, coordinates, and manages the overall development and implementation of policies programs for transportation security and physical protection of fissile material at nuclear fuelcycle facilities. Conducts technical and regulatory reviews in support of regulatory programs, rulemakings, and licensing. Plans, coordinates, and manages contingency planning and emergency response activities for safeguards events at fuel-cycle facilities and assesses fuelcycle facility event reports. Participates in international activities including IAEA coordination, bilateral discussions with foreign nations on items of interest, and import and export notifications on nuclear materials and special nuclear materials transfers. Plans, coordinates, and manages the programs for fitness for duty requirements at NRC-licensed facilities, limited work authorizations, and for licensed nuclear material. Coordinates international activities among appropriate agency offices and other federal agencies related to the adequacy of radioactive source security, physical protection, export licensing reviews, including coordination with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).

To top of page


Division of Security Operations

Director: Michael Layton
Deputy Director: Joseph Donoghue (Acting)

Directs implementation of programs for security and safeguards at nuclear facilities and material. Monitors and assesses the threat environment, including liaison with intelligence and law enforcement agencies. Implements the performance-evaluation program for licensed facilities and activities to evaluate the effectiveness of security force response. Develops and oversees the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) oversight program to evaluate the implementation of NRC requirements and activities related to safeguards and security for NRC licensed facilities and activities. Ensures the protection of classified and sensitive unclassified information (Safeguards Information (SGI) and Protected Critical Infrastructure Information (PCll)) at NRC facilities, NRC contractors, licensees, and certificate holders. Oversees the implementation of programs related to personnel security including access authorization and fitness for duty at licensed facilities and to protect licensed material. Oversees the implementation of the enforcement and allegations programs for safeguards and security.

Security Oversight and Support Branch

Chief: Doug Huyck

Develops and oversees the NRC's physical security baseline inspection program to evaluate the implementation of NRC requirements and activities at licensed power reactor and Category I fuel cycle facilities. Plans, coordinates, and manages the oversight activities for security at independent spent fuel storage installations; decommissioned power reactors; other licensed radioactive material, waste processing, storage, and disposal facilities ; transportation security; and physical protection of fissile material at nuclear fuel-cycle facilities . Serves as the primary Division liaison for oversight activities with the Regions, the Office of Enforcement, the Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation, and the Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards. · Develops and oversees the Security Inspector Qualification arid Training program. Coordinates training of new security staff within the Office. Manages contractor support for the Division's physical security oversight function. Conducts and coordinates the Office-wide allegation and enforcement programs. Compiles and maintains security inspection information and insights for use in knowledge management and security operational experience programs. Prepares the Annual Report to Congress on force-on-force and security baseline inspection results. Develops and maintains the security risk analysis function. Establishes standards, procedures, and guidance for the target set inspections.

Security Performance Evaluation Branch

Chief: Clay Johnson

Develops and oversees the NRC program for performance-based evaluations of licensee security programs to assess the effectiveness of such programs, including force-on-force exercises and tabletop drills. Acquires and manages resources to maximize, to the extent practicable, the effective simulation of security threats in force-on-force exercises. Incorporates lessons-learned from these into ongoing programs to identify needed improvements to ensure licensee security programs are effective.

Intelligence Liaison and Threat Assessment Branch

Chief: Laura Pearson

Assesses the threat environment affecting regulated activities, performs rapid assessment of the credibility of threats and security events, coordinates with the intelligence and law enforcement communities, assesses illicit trafficking events, and reviews the adequacy of NRC's design-basis threats based on domestic and foreign events and intelligence information. Maintains the NRC's design-basis threats and threat attributes and adversary characteristics. Provides daily intelligence support to the Commission. Administers the NRC's counterintelligence and insider threat programs. Coordinates with NRC's Federal Security Coordinators regarding communicating threat information.

Information Security Branch

Chief: Darryl Parsons

Plans, coordinates, and manages the information security program to protect classified and sensitive unclassified information (SGI and PCll) for the agency and oversight for licensed activities. Administers the NRC's secure telecommunications, declassification, technical security, foreign disclosure of information, foreign ownership, control or influence, and authorized classifiers and SGI designators programs. Ensures the protection of classified and sensitive unclassified information (SGI and PCll) at NRC facilities, NRC contractors, licensees, and certificate holders, including inspections and oversight of licensee information security programs. Acts as the NRC Central Office of Record for communications security (COMSEC) material and operates the NRC's secure communications center. Develops, operates, and maintains the NRC's Secure Communications System including maintaining the certification of NRC's Sensitive Compartmented Information Facilities (SCIFs).

To top of page


Division of Preparedness and Response

Director: Marissa Bailey
Deputy Director: Stephanie Coffin

Develops emergency preparedness policies, regulations, programs, and guidelines for both currently licensed nuclear reactors and potential new nuclear reactors. Provides technical expertise regarding emergency preparedness issues and interpretations, and conducts technical and regulatory reviews of emergency preparedness applications and amendments. Coordinates, as appropriate, with NMSS, NRR, and other NRC organizations on emergency preparedness matters. Coordinates, as appropriate, with DHS, FDA, EPA, and other federal and state government agencies on emergency preparedness matters. Develops and directs implementation of the policies and programs for the agency's response to incidents involving licensed facilities and materials. Exercises oversight of the regional response programs. Manages the NRC Operations Center. Coordinates incident response programs with Federal, State, and local governments and licensees.

Coordination Branch

Chief: Francis Peduzzi

Develops NRC policy, plans, program requirements, and procedures for the NRC response to incidents. Ensures that the NRC response is consistent with the NRC role and licensee responsibilities and is coordinated with Federal and State response activities. Maintains, and integrates NRC response plans, procedures, and training of personnel and organizations. Conducts exercises to achieve and test readiness objectives. Serves as the agency focal point for incident response interface with FEMA and other Federal agencies. Provides response planning and procedural guidance to regional offices and assesses regional office response capabilities. Develops, maintains, and integrates NRC plans, procedures, and training for response to domestic and international radiological events and to any incidents that threaten the continuity of government (COG) or continuity of NRC operations (COOP).

Operations Branch

Chief: Bernard Stapleton

Manages the NRC Operations Center. Provides operational support for Headquarters response activities. Provides Agency "first-responders" to licensee events by ensuring continuous shift staffing of the Operations Center. Provides adequate staff, procedures, and equipment readiness for the receipt of reports of reactor events, materials events, and other information at the Operations Center. Provides prompt feedback to NRC Headquarters and the regions regarding reported events that require immediate regulatory attention. Notifies other Federal agencies of significant events. Initiates, monitors and maintains communications with licensees during events, drills and exercises to ensure effective communication flow.

Reactor Licensing Branch

Chief: Joseph Anderson

Performs the technical reviews and development of safety evaluation reports for emergency preparedness related licensing actions for currently licensed operating and decommissioning power reactors, and research and test reactors. Performs the technical reviews and development of safety evaluation reports for early site permits, design certifications, and combined operating licenses for new and advanced reactors. Performs the technical reviews and development of safety evaluation reports for fuel processing facilities, and spent fuel storage facilities and transportation. Supports the development, review and revision of regulations, guidance and generic communications related to emergency preparedness licensing activities. Works closely with the Federal Emergency Management Agency on their evaluation of offsite plans and preparedness in support of: initial licensing; proposed changes to a licensee’s emergency preparedness program; determination of continued reasonable assurance following a significant natural phenomenon (tornado, hurricane, flooding, etc.), and resolution of allegations or 2.206 petitions to the Commission involving offsite plans and preparedness. Supports emergency preparedness licensing related Commission meetings, Atomic Safety and Licensing Board hearings, Advisory Committee on Reactor Safety meetings, public meetings with industry and other stakeholders, and response to requests for support from the Office of Public Affairs and the Office of Congressional Affairs.

Regulatory Policy and Oversight Branch

Chief: Robert Kahler

Develops, maintains and oversees the NRC’s Emergency Preparedness Cornerstone of the Reactor Oversight Program (ROP) for operating nuclear power plants, new reactors transitioning to power operation, and reactors transitioning to decommissioning and provides technical direction for enforcement and significance determination. Performs assessments of the EP ROP cornerstone effectiveness and evaluates operating experience, event reports and inspection results to inform EP regulatory and outreach activities. Develops, maintains, and implements the EP Inspector Qualification Training program. Serves as the primary Division liaison for EP oversight and regulatory activities with the Regions, Office of Enforcement, Office of Nuclear Reactor Regulation, Office of Nuclear Material Safety and Safeguards, and Office of Research, Office of New Reactors, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Develops, manages and revises EP regulatory and policy activities regarding rulemaking, regulatory guides, guidance documents, and generic communications in coordination with FEMA and other interested stakeholders (as applicable) for operating reactors, reactors transitioning to decommissioning, and existing and new reactor technologies. Compiles and maintains emergency preparedness information and insights for use in knowledge management and coordinates and conducts EP stakeholder outreach activities. Supports requests for assistance for EP oversight and regulatory inquiries from the Office of Public Affairs, Office of Congressional Affairs, and Office of International Programs.

To top of page

Page Last Reviewed/Updated Wednesday, September 21, 2016