Mary Saunders was named Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Manufacturing and Services in December 2008. In this capacity, she manages the day-to-day operations of the International Trade Administration’s (ITA) Manufacturing and Services division of more than 200 industry specialists, economists and international trade experts. She helps strengthen the competitive position of U.S. industries in the U.S. and world markets by coordinating Commerce Department strategies, policies and programs with U.S. industries in mind. In addition to manufacturing, services and industry analysis units, MAS houses the Advisory Committees Staff and the Office of Standards Liaison for ITA. Working with industries and other government agencies, MAS analyzes industrial competitiveness issues and takes action to resolve problems.
Ms. Saunders began her Commerce Department career in ITA, and returned in 2008 to take up her current position, following a 15 year career at the Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), where she served in a variety of positions, most recently as Chief, Standards Services Division. In that capacity, she administered a range of standards-related programs to provide solutions to regulatory and industry needs and increase trade opportunities. Over the course of her Commerce career, Ms. Saunders has managed programs to advance U.S. business and technology interests in the European Union, Russia and the Newly Independent States, China and Japan. She has worked with a broad range of sectors on competitiveness and market access issues, including information and communications technologies, telecommunications, medical devices, oil and gas equipment, construction equipment, energy technologies and consumer goods.
Ms. Saunders has been in federal service since 1979, serving in a variety of positions with the Department of the Army, including the Office of Institutional Research, U.S. Military Academy, before joining ITA in 1986. In ITA, she served as a special assistant in the Office of Capital Goods and as Team Leader, Internal Market Staff, in the Office of European Community Affairs, where she was a member of the U.S. team that negotiated the U.S.-European Union Mutual Recognition Agreement.