United States Nuclear Regulatory Commission - Protecting People and the Environment

Joseph G. Klinger

Joe Klinger has been the Assistant Director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) since January 2007. From May 2010 to February 2011, he served as the IEMA Interim Director and as the Governor’s Homeland Security Advisor. Joe also served as the IEMA Acting Director from January 20 – February 1, 2015. Joe currently maintains a Department of Homeland Security Secret clearance. As Assistant Director, he oversees the day-to-day operations of the agency, which has 202 employees and an annual budget of $485 million.

A major component within IEMA is a robust nuclear safety program with many innovative programs. Illinois has 11 operating nuclear power reactors, more than any other state, and IEMA has been an Agreement State since 1987 with approximately 630 radioactive material licensees. IEMA also regulates 11,000 X-ray facilities, accredits over 13,000 radiologic technologists, and is one of four certifying states under the Mammography Quality Standards Act Program.

In June 2008, Joe was appointed as a Commissioner on the Central Midwest Interstate Low-Level Radioactive Waste Compact Commission and currently serves as Chairman. The Commission oversees all low-level radioactive waste issues in the compact consisting of Illinois and Kentucky. Joe serves as one of two representatives from the National Emergency Management Association for the National Alliance for Radiation Readiness and serves on the Disused Sources Working Group, a group tasked with source security and finding solutions for proper management and disposition of disused sources. Joe serves as Chair of the Conference of Radiation Control Program Directors, Inc. (CRCPD) E-34 Committee for Unwanted Radioactive Materials. The E-34 developed and helps maintain the national orphan source and SCATR programs.

Joe Klinger has worked for IEMA for 27+ years. Prior to his role as Assistant Director, he served as the agency’s Manager of the Radioactive Materials Program since 1996. He began employment as the Head of Radioactive Material Licensing in August 1988. From 1980-1988, Mr. Klinger was the Licensing Branch Administrator for the Texas Bureau of Radiation Control.

Joe has been a consultant to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna, Austria and assisted IAEA in the development of the Radioactive Source Categorization document currently used globally for security efforts. He performed technical assist visits to Latvia and Panama in the global effort to control all significant sources of radioactive material. He has been a featured speaker at many state, national and international meetings, including a conference on the “Peaceful Use of Radioactive Materials” in Hanoi, Vietnam in March 1999. In October 2013, Joe presented a poster session regarding CRCPD Orphan Source and Source Collection and Threat Reduction Program at the IAEA “Safety and Security of Radioactive Sources: Maintaining Continuous Global Control of Sources throughout Their Life Cycle” in Abu Dhabi, UAE. In March 2015, Joe was invited to the National Council on Radiation Protection & Measurement (NCRP) Annual Meeting where he presented his paper “Enhanced Radioactive Material Source Security”.

Joe earned his Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology/Chemistry and completed some graduate studies at the University of Texas at Austin, and his M.S. in Health Care Management/Public Administration at Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State University). Joe is a recent graduate of the Executive Leaders Program at the Center for Homeland Defense and Security at the Navy Postgraduate School. Over his 35+ years in Health Physics, he has completed extensive health physics training in courses at Oak Ridge Associated Universities, University of Texas, College of Engineering, and other institutions.

In 1985, he was commissioned an Officer in the U.S. Navy Reserve as a Radiation Health Officer, Environmental Health Officer and Health Care Manager in the Medical Service Corps. He was deployed in 2004-2005 to the Middle East in support of Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) and Operation Iraqi Freedom. Joe began his military career in 1967 as a U.S. Marine Corps Combat Infantryman in Vietnam and retired in 2008 as a Navy Captain.
Page Last Reviewed/Updated Tuesday, May 24, 2016