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NLM Board of Regents Charter 2022 to 2024
See also the 2022-2024 Charter signed (PDF)



 Board of Regents of the National Library of Medicine


Required by 42 U.S.C. 286a and 286b-2, sections 466 and 471 of the Public Health Service (PHS) Act, as amended. The Board of Regents of the National Library of Medicine (Board) is governed by the provisions of the Federal Advisory Committee Act, as amended (5 U.S.C. App. 2).


The Board will advise, consult with, and make recommendations to the Secretary of Health and Human Services (Secretary) on matters related to the activities carried out by and through the NLM and the policies respecting these activities.

The Board also serves as the National Medical Libraries Assistance Advisory Board, which advises and assists in the preparation of general regulations and with respect to policy matters arising in the administration and review of applications for support of projects designed to develop facilities and techniques necessary to collect, preserve, store, process, retrieve, and facilitate the dissemination and utilization of widely expanded knowledge in health sciences and the biomedical information this support has generated.


The Board will provide advice and recommendations on matters of policy in regard to the NLM, including such matters as the acquisition of materials for the NLM, the scope, content, and organization of NLM’s services, and the rules under which its materials, publications, facilities, and services will be made available to various kinds of users. The Board also may, on the basis of materials provided, make recommendations with respect to research conducted at the NLM; review and make recommendations about applications for grants, contracts, and cooperative agreements for support of medical library resources and systems; research in medical informatics and in management of biotechnology information; training for research and for use of information management technology; biomedical publications; development and demonstration projects; educational technology; and related projects which show promise of making valuable contributions to the NLM’s mission. The Board also advises on the development of a biomedical communications network through the support and maintenance of a national network of libraries of medicine throughout the country.

As needed, the Board and its subcommittees may seek advice from special consultants; assemble ad hoc working groups; and convene conferences, workshops, or other activities.


The Board will advise the Secretary.


Management and support services will be provided by the Office of the Director, NLM.


The estimated annual cost for operating the Board, including compensation and travel expenses for members, but excluding staff support, is $204,409. The estimate of annual person-years of staff required is 0.3, at an estimated annual cost of $56,242.


The Director, NLM, serves as the Designated Federal Officer (DFO) of the Board and the Executive Secretary. In the event that the DFO cannot fulfill the assigned duties of the Board, one or more full-time or permanent part-time NLM employees will be assigned as DFO to carry out these duties on a temporary basis.

The DFO will approve all of the Board’s and subcommittees’ meetings, prepare and approve all meeting agendas, attend all Board and subcommittee meetings, adjourn any meeting when it is determined to be in the public interest, and chair meetings when directed by to do so by the official to whom the committee reports.


Meetings of the full Board will be held at the call of the Chair (with the DFO’s approval) or upon request of the Director, NLM not less than three times within a fiscal year. Meetings will be open to the public except as determined by the Secretary at the request of the DFO in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 552b(c) and 41 C.F.R. 102-3.155 including specifying the specific exceptions that justifies closure. Notice of all meetings will be given to the public. In the event a portion of the meeting is closed to the public, as determined by the Secretary, in accordance with the Government in the Sunshine Act (5 U.S.C. 552b(c)) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act, a report of closed or partially-closed meetings will be prepared which will contain, at a minimum, a list of members and their business addresses, the Board’s functions, dates and places of meetings, and a summary of the Board’s activities and recommendations made during the fiscal year.




Unless renewed by appropriate action prior to its expiration, the Charter for the Board of Regents will expire two years from the date the charter is filed.


The Board will consist of 10 members appointed by the Secretary and 9 nonvoting ex officio members. The nonvoting ex officio members will include the Surgeons General of the PHS, the Army, the Navy, and the Air Force; the Under Secretary for Health of the Department of Veterans Affairs; the Dean of the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences; the Assistant Director for Biological Sciences of the National Science Foundation; the Director of the National Agricultural Library; and the Librarian of Congress (or their designees). The 10 appointed members will be selected from leaders in the various fields of the fundamental sciences, medicine, dentistry, public health, hospital administration, pharmacology, health communications technology, scientific or medical library work, or in public affairs. At least six of the appointed members will be selected from leaders in the fields of medical, dental, public health research or education. Appointed members must be eligible to serve as Special Government Employees (SGEs) and will serve as SGEs, as defined by 18 U.S.C. § 202. A quorum for the conduct of business by the full Board will consist of a majority of currently appointed members.

Appointed members will be invited to serve for overlapping four-year terms, except that any member appointed to fill a vacancy for an unexpired term will be appointed for the remainder of that term. A member may serve 180 days after the expiration of that member’s term if a successor has not taken office. None of the appointed members shall be eligible for reappointment within one year after the end of the preceding term of such member.

The Board shall annually elect one of the appointed members to serve as Chair until the next election.


As necessary, subcommittees and ad hoc working groups may be established by the DFO within the Board’s jurisdiction. The advice/recommendations of a subcommittee/working group must be deliberated by the parent advisory committee. A subcommittee/working group may not report directly to a federal official unless there is statutory authority to do so.

Subcommittee membership may be drawn in whole or in part from the parent advisory committee. All subcommittee members may vote on subcommittee actions and all subcommittee members count towards the quorum for a subcommittee meeting. A quorum for a subcommittee will be three members. Ad hoc consultants are not considered members, do not count towards the quorum, and may not vote. The Department Committee Management Officer will be notified upon establishment of each standing subcommittee and will be provided information on its name, membership, function, and estimated frequency of meetings.


Meetings of the Board and its subcommittees will be conducted according to the Federal Advisory Committee Act, other applicable laws and Departmental policies. Board and subcommittee records will be handled in accordance with General Records Schedule 6.2, Federal Advisory Committee Records, or other approved agency records disposition schedule. These records will be available for public inspection and copying, subject to any applicable exemptions under the Freedom of Information Act, 5 U.S.C. 552(b) and 41 C.F.R. 102-3.170.


 November 30, 2022


Lawrence A. Tabak -S
Date Performing the Duties of the NIH Director

Digitally signed by Lawrence A.
Tabak -S
Date: 2022.11.17 12:24:06 -05'00'


Last Reviewed: January 30, 2023