TIP Leadership

Portrait of Dr. Erwin Gianchandani

Credit: National Science Foundation

Dr. Erwin Gianchandani
Assistant Director for Technology, Innovation and Partnerships

Dr. Erwin Gianchandani is the U.S. National Science Foundation’s assistant director for Technology, Innovation and Partnerships, leading the newly established TIP Directorate.

Gianchandani has worked at NSF since 2012. Prior to becoming the assistant director for TIP, he served as the senior advisor for Translation, Innovation and Partnerships for over a year, where he helped develop plans for the new TIP Directorate in collaboration with colleagues at NSF, other government agencies, industry and academia.

During the previous six years, Gianchandani was the NSF deputy assistant director for Computer and Information Science and Engineering, twice serving as acting assistant director for CISE. Gianchandani’s leadership and management of CISE included the formulation and implementation of the directorate's $1 billion annual budget, strategic and human capital planning, and oversight of day-to-day operations for a team of over 130.

Gianchandani has led the development and launch of several new NSF initiatives, including the Smart & Connected Communities program, Civic Innovation Challenge, Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research, and the National Artificial Intelligence Research Institutes.

Before joining NSF in 2012, Gianchandani was the inaugural director of the Computing Community Consortium, providing leadership to the computing research community in identifying and pursuing bold, high-impact research directions such as health information technology and sustainable computing.

Gianchandani has published extensively and presented at international conferences on computational systems biology. He holds a bachelor's degree in computer science and master's and doctoral degrees in biomedical engineering, all from the University of Virginia.

In 2021, Gianchandani received the Distinguished Presidential Rank Award, awarded to members of the Federal Government’s Senior Executive Service for sustained extraordinary accomplishment. In 2018, he was awarded the Outstanding Young Engineering Graduate Award from the University of Virginia.

Image of Gracie Narcho

Credit: National Science Foundation

Graciela (Gracie) Narcho
Deputy Assistant Director for Technology, Innovation and Partnerships

 

Graciela (Gracie) Narcho is the U.S. National Science Foundation's deputy assistant director for Technology, Innovation and Partnerships, helping to lead the newly established TIP Directorate. Before her current role, Narcho was a senior advisor in the Office of the Director, helping to develop plans for TIP.

Narcho has been with NSF for nearly three decades, serving in a broad range of roles spanning grants and agreements oversight, program management and senior leadership. In all her NSF positions, she has been a change agent for human capital reforms, business practice innovations, and NSF policy development.

Narcho's hallmark is her ability to successfully work within the federal bureaucracy to develop innovative approaches to best meet the mission of the agency. For example, together with colleagues across NSF, Narcho has helped develop and launch several NSF initiatives, including the Global Environment for Networking Innovation, or GENI, Computing Community Consortium, or CCC, Non-Academic Research Internships for Graduate Students, or INTERN, and Computer and Information Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowships, or CSGrad4US. In recent years, Narcho co-led the NSF partnerships team, streamlining processes and procedures for NSF partnerships with industry, nonprofits, other federal agencies, and international funding organizations.

Narcho's federal career path has enabled her to impact the nation in a variety of capacities.

As a contract specialist at the U.S. Department of Energy, Narcho oversaw the $120 million management and operating contract for the Office of Naval Petroleum Oil and Shale Reserves in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming.

As an NSF grants officer, Narcho oversaw the cooperative agreement for the continuing operations of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, a $430 million federally funded research and development center; developed and awarded the U.S. Civilian Research and Development Foundation for the newly Independent States of the Former Soviet Union, the first NSF congressionally mandated, endowed, non-governmental, nonprofit foundation; and negotiated the first jointly-developed and funded government-industry Engineering Research Center.

On a detail assignment to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Narcho spearheaded the development of the first agencywide "Grant Forecast" to provide potential proposers an early-stage preview process for all HHS grant solicitations.

As deputy division director and acting division director for NSF's Division of Industrial Innovation and Partnerships, Narcho led policy development and implementation of programs that accelerated federally funded fundamental research into market opportunities and fostered public-private partnerships to advance technological innovation. Under Narcho's leadership, NSF initiated a new pre-submission pitch process, by which potential Phase I projects in the SBIR/STTR programs could be vetted for programmatic fit and suitability prior to full proposal submission, thereby providing more immediate feedback to early-stage startups and reducing the burden on potential proposers, NSF staff and reviewers.

Narcho has also served in leadership roles within the NSF Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering. She was instrumental in developing the industry-government partnerships for the National Artificial Intelligence Research Institutes program. She also led the largest transformation of the workforce structure and responsibilities in CISE history, resulting in a more flexible workforce that could be redeployed as necessary as business processes and systems changed over time.

Narcho received her bachelor's degree in economics from Tufts University and was co-valedictorian of her master's in public administration program at George Washington University, with a concentration in procurement and contracting.