Obama taps Hamburg for FDA Chief, Launches Food Safety Group

March 16, 2009

President Barack Obama chose Dr. Margaret Hamburg to run the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and announced a Cabinet-level food safety group Saturday, March 14.

According to "Obama picks FDA chief, starts food safety panel":

Obama also outlined measures to keep diseased cows from entering the food supply and promised to increase the number of FDA food inspectors and modernize food safety labs.

He selected Baltimore Health Commissioner Dr. Joshua Sharfstein to serve as Hamburg's principal deputy.

Hamburg is a former New York City health chief and she worked on policy issues in President Clinton's health department. She has experience on topics ranging from AIDS to reduction of biological threats.

Obama said he would assign his Health and Human Services secretary -- his nominee is former Kansas governor Kathleen Sebelius -- and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to head a group to advise on ways to improve food safety laws.

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