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Formation of the U.S. Transuranium and Uranium Registries

Steps Toward Merging the USTR and USUR
The USTUR administrative office was moved to the WSU Tri-cities campus, Richland, WA in 1992

In 1981, the Advisory Committee recommended that the Transuranium and Uranium Registries be combined into a single entity. Although this recommendation was not immediately acted upon, a combined USTR and USUR Advisory Committee was created. The 1983 Advisory Committee discussed the Uranium Registry, suggesting that both the Uranium and the Transuranium registries should increase their understanding of uranium biokinetics and analysis. The USUR director, Robert Moore, retired in 1989 and USTR director, Margery Swint, assumed directorship of both registries for a short time before accepting a promotion at Hanford Environmental Health Foundation. Ronald Kathren then became the second USTR/USUR director. Though the two Registries remained administratively separate, the first combined Annual Report for the Registries was published in 1990. Throughout this time period, the publication of papers in peer reviewed scientific literature was emphasized.

The United States Transuranium and Uranium Registries
1995 Staff Photo- Left to right: Ronald Filipy, Lynn Harwick, John Russell, Ronald Kathren, Susan Ehrhart, Mildred Markel, Mickey Hunacek, Cheryl Love, Anthony James.

The USTR and USUR were administratively joined in 1992 when the US DOE awarded a three year grant to Washington State University (WSU) for the management and operation of the Registries. The registries were renamed the U.S. Transuranium and Uranium Registries (USTUR) and continued to operate under the direction of Ronald L. Kathren. WSU’s College of Pharmacy assumed responsibility for the registries at that time and radiochemistry operations moved from Los Alamos National Laboratory to WSU Pullman, WA in 1994. Combining the USUR and the USTR into a single entity eliminated redundant efforts and lowered overheads. The move to an independent research university allowed for collaborative research projects with other university personnel, access to specialized analytical capabilities, and student participation in research activities. The transfer also enhanced the credibility of the USTUR program in that it was funded as a grant rather than a contract and the staff members have full academic freedom typical of a university community.

Ron Filipy became director in 1999 and Anthony C. James took over the directorship in 2005 after Ronald Filipy retired. Sergei Tolmachev has been director since 2010.