Miriam McIntire Nisbet


Miriam Nisbet was the founding Director of the Office of Government Information Services (OGIS), National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). Created by the 2007 amendments to the Freedom of Information Act, OGIS is the federal FOIA ombudsman office, charged with providing mediation services to resolve disputes between FOIA requesters and federal agencies and with improving FOIA administration. In addition to establishing OGIS, Miriam represented the National Archives at the Administrative Conference of the United States; the International Council on Archives; the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions; the US National Commission for UNESCO; and the International Conference of Information Commissioners. She was chair of the FOIA Advisory Committee, established by NARA in 2014 as one of the US government’s commitments under its National Action Plan for the Open Government Partnership. Miriam retired from NARA in November 2014.

Miriam previously served for two years at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in Paris as Director of the Information Society Division, in UNESCO’s Communication and Information Sector. From 1999 to 2007, Miriam was Legislative Counsel for the American Library Association in ALA’s Washington Office, working primarily on copyright and other intellectual property issues raised by the digital information environment. She was Special Counsel for Information Policy, National Archives and Records Administration from 1994 to 1999. Prior to joining the National Archives, Miriam had served since 1982 as the Deputy Director of the Office of Information and Privacy, U.S. Department of Justice.

Miriam received a BA degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a JD degree from the University’s School of Law. She is a member of the Bars of the District of Columbia and North Carolina. Miriam was elected in 2005 as a member of the American Law Institute. She received the Sunshine in Government Award in 2014 and the American Society of Access Professionals President’s Award for Distinguished Public Service in 2013.