Janet Lippe Norwood served as commissioner of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics from 1979–91, first appointed by President Jimmy Carter in 1979 and reappointed by President Ronald Reagan with confirmation by the Senate. She testified often on unemployment and inflation to the Joint Economic Committee and other Congressional committees. She served as a senior fellow at the Urban Institute from 1992–99. President George H.W. Bush appointed her chair of the Advisory Council on Unemployment Compensation in 1992, and President Bill Clinton reappointed her in 1993. Norwood was a senior fellow and counselor at the New York Conference Board. She chaired a National Academy of Sciences panel to evaluate the 2000 Census, served on a panel to define racial discrimination, and chaired a panel to review food insecurity. She earned a National Public Service Award and a distinguished rank in the Senior Executive Service. She was a president and fellow of the American Statistical Association, a fellow of the National Association of Business Economists, an honorary fellow of the Royal Statistical Society, and a member of the Douglass Society.