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Forensic Laboratory Needs Technology Working Group — A Channel to Improve Forensics

Date Published
March 4, 2022

The National Institute of Justice forensic science strategic research plan includes facilitating information sharing between federal, state, and local forensic science laboratories. NIJ’s Forensic Laboratory Needs Technology Working Group (FLN-TWG) supports this initiative and underscores the Department of Justice’s commitment to creating an effective network of crime labs across the country.

The working group will provide objective and independent knowledge and expertise, ensuring that research and implementation of forensic technology is relevant and responsive to the laboratory operations needs of the forensic science community.

The official group includes laboratory directors from across the country, representing large and small, urban and rural facilities. Representatives from independent laboratories and those organized by law enforcement agencies are included, as well as leaders in the field of forensic science research.

Housed at NIJ and supported by NIJ’s Forensic Technology Center of Excellence, the working group is the product of department-sponsored listening sessions held with forensic science practitioners and stakeholders. The group held its inaugural meeting in the fall of 2018, and maintains biannual meetings.

NIJ believes that this FLN-TWG model, that includes practitioners supported by researchers, is the best path forward and will ensure that resources are focused appropriately to keep pace with the increasing demand for services. The FLN-TWG explores new ways to increase casework efficiencies and implement forensic technology innovations that will advance system-based strategies and lead to a stronger justice system and safer communities.

The FLN-TWG members are (updated as of January 1, 2022):

  • Jose Almirall, Ph.D., Professor/Director, Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Director, Center for Advanced Research in Forensic Science Florida International University
  • Kevin Ardoin, Laboratory Director, Acadiana Criminalistics Laboratory
  • Les Barnett, Director, Center for Forensics, Information Technology and Security, University of South Alabama
  • Matthew Gamette, M.S., C.P.M, Laboratory System Director, Idaho State Police Forensic Services
  • Wesley P. Grose, MFS, Director, Scientific Services Bureau Los Angeles Sheriff's Department
  • Lesley Hammer, MA, Msc, Hammer Forensics Anchorage, Alaska
  • Brian Hoey, Laboratory System Director, Missouri State Highway Patrol
  • Linda Jackson, Director, Virginia Department of Forensic Science
  • Sarah Kerrigan, Ph.D., Professor, Sam Houston State, Department of Forensic Science
  • Timothy Kupferschmid, Ph.D., Chief of Laboratories, New York City Office of Chief Medical Examiner
  • Troy Lawrence, Sergeant, Digital Forensic Lab - ‎Fort Worth Police Department
  • Tim Rohrig, Ph.D., F-ABFT, Chief Toxicologist, Sedgwick County [Kansas] Regional Forensic Science Center, Professor at Emporia State University and University of Lincoln - United Kingdom.
  • Paul Speaker, Ph.D., Professor, College of Business & Economics West Virginia University
  • Stephanie Stoiloff, Senior Police Bureau Commander, Forensic Services Bureau Miami-Dade Police Department
  • Peter Stout, Ph.D., President, CEO, Houston Forensic Science Center
  • Jody Wolf, Crime Lab Administrator, Phoenix Police Department Crime Lab
  • Catherine Grgicak, Henry Rutgers Chair and Associate Professor Chair, Department of Chemistry, Center for Computational and Integrative Biology Rutgers University
  • Sarah Seashols Williams, Ph.D., Associate Professor Graduate Program Director, Department of Forensic Science Virginia Commonwealth University
  • Thomas Busey, Professor of Cognitive Sciences, Indiana University
  • Christopher Kelly, JD, Director, Digital Evidence Laboratory Commonwealth of Massachusetts Office of the Attorney General
  • Brady Mills, Deputy Assistant Director, Texas Department of Public Safety Law Enforcement Support – Crime Lab Service
  • Mike Garvey, , Philadelphia PD Crime Lab
  • Cleveland Miles, Deputy Director of the Crime Laboratory, Georgia Bureau of Investigation
  • Kristina Takeshita, Laboratory Director, Los Angeles Police Department, Forensic Science Division

Date Modified: March 4, 2022

List of members updated as of January 1, 2022

Date Modified: March 4, 2022

This article was originally published August 27, 2018

Date Published: March 4, 2022