Natalie Adan, Division Director, Food Safety Division, Georgia Department of Agriculture 

Natalie Adan is originally from Atlanta, GA and graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology from Georgia Southern University.  Natalie works for the Georgia Department of Agriculture as the Food Safety Division Director. As the Division Director, she oversees manufactured food, retail food, dairy, and farm safety programs.

Natalie is committed to helping develop and implement a fully integrated food safety system rooted in public health principles and focused on prevention. She completed the International Food Protection Training Institute’s Fellowship in Food Protection Program in 2011 and actively participates in many food safety associations.  In 2017, she received the Eugene H. Holeman Award for her valuable contribution to food, drug, cosmetic and consumer products in administration and enforcement.

Shannon Archie, Environmental Health Manager, South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control

N. Shannon Archie began her career with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) in 2007 as an Administrative Supervisor. She has worked multiple program areas within SCDHEC. Currently, as a member of the Standardization team, Shannon assists in the development of standard operating procedures, marking guides, ] and other guidance tools to ensure uniform interpretation and application of the South Carolina’s Retail Food Establishment Regulation. training of regional food protection staff to ensure uniform interpretation and application of Regulation 61-25training of regional food protection staff to ensure uniform interpretation and application of Regulation 61-25 Shannon earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Voorhees College.

Jessica Badour, Recall Outreach Specialist, Georgia Department of Agriculture

From veteran communications specialist to preeminent food safety professional, Jessica Badour has built a successful and diversified career developing compelling means of sharing information while engaging the public on essential issues. She is currently the Recall Coordinator & Outreach Specialist at the Georgia Department of Agriculture, where she focuses on implementing recall communications while facilitating educational and promotional outreach opportunities for the Department’s Food Safety Division. Follow & engage with her on both Twitter and Instagram @GDAFoodSafety.

Kyle R.L Baker, Founder and CEO, EcoBuds

Kyle is the Founder and CEO of EcoBuds.  He founded the company based upon a deep understanding and experience in socio-technical design and econometric modeling and their application to disease mitigation.  He has applied this expertise to 16 core markets for chlorine dioxide (ClO2) use, including early adaptation of ClO2 for disinfection and sterilization in brewery and winery operations, the application of ClO2 under the Minor Use/Minor Species Act, as well as supporting wastewater treatment patents in the automotive and secondary manufacturer markets.  As a cannabis entrepreneur, Kyle focuses his attention on scientific verification methods and weighted decision-making to ensure the end-to-end delivery of clean and compliant cannabis to consumers, most notably medical patients.

Colin Barthel, Food Defense Policy Analyst, Office of Food Defense, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Colin Barthel, a Food Defense Policy Analyst in the Food Defense and Emergency Coordination Staff in the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. Mr. Barthel serves as a major contributor for the writing of the Food Safety Modernization Act Intentional Adulteration rule and associated guidance, and serves as the CFSAN co-lead on the IA rule Phase 2 workgroup, which is responsible for the development of the implementation strategy for the IA rule.

Susan Best, Environmental Health Manager, South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control

Susan Best has served as the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control’s Retail Food Survey Team Lead since 2018.  Before moving into this position Susan was a Food inspector in the Pee Dee Region for 23 years.  Prior to her career at DHEC, Susan earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Francis Marion University. She is married and has two daughters at the College of Charleston and one son in high school.

Courtney Bidney Director, Global Scientific and Regulatory Affairs and Bell Institute of Health and Nutrition, General Mills

Courtney is a Director in Global Scientific and Regulatory Affairs and the Bell Institute of Health and Nutrition at General Mills.  Courtney’s responsibilities include regulatory and external affairs accountabilities in the areas of food safety and nutrition.  In addition, Courtney leads the international health and wellness network responsible for Health and Wellness strategy, including innovation, communication, and regulatory for regions outside of the United States.

Courtney joined General Mills in 2000 as a Quality Management Associate and subsequently worked in multiple General Mills manufacturing facilities as both a Quality Engineer and Quality Manager.  Courtney transitioned to the General Mills corporate headquarters in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 2009 where she has served in multiple roles of increasing responsibility in the product safety and scientific and regulatory affairs area.  Courtney serves on the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) Science and Regulatory Affairs Committee, the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA) Yogurt and Cultured Products Board, and the Consumer Goods Forum Health & Wellness Steering Committee.  She is a governor appointed member and Vice Chair of the Minnesota Food Safety and Defense Task Force.  In addition, Courtney serves as the Food Industry Advisor to the Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO) Board of Directors and is the Co-Chair of the AFDO Industry Association Membership Committee.

Courtney holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Nutritional Sciences from Texas A&M University and a Master of Science Degree in Food Science and Technology from Ohio State University.  In her free time, Courtney enjoys spending time with her husband and two children, Jackson and Madeline.

Dr. Betsy Booren, Senior Vice President of Science and Technology, Grocery Manufacturers Association

Dr. Betsy Booren currently serves as Senior Vice President of Science and Technology for the Grocery Manufacturers Association.  She provides strategic leadership and executes the scientific and regulatory policy platforms for CPG-industry.   Before joining the GMA in November 2019, Dr. Booren was Senior Policy Advisor for Olsson, Frank, Weeda, Terman, and Matz assisting food industry clients with FDA and USDA regulatory compliance issues.  She also spent seven years at the Meat Institute and its affiliated organizations in a variety of roles, including Vice President of Scientific Affairs as well as President for the Foundation of Meat and Poultry Research and Education.

Paul Brooks, Executive Director, Regulatory Affairs Professional Society

Paul Brooks has served as executive director of the Regulatory Affairs Professionals Society (RAPS) since September 2016. Prior to that, he had been an active RAPS member and volunteer for more than 25 years, including serving as a RAPS board member and chairman (2008–13). Brooks has more than 25 years of professional experience in medical device regulatory affairs, including as head of BSI Notified Body, responsible for review and clearance of medical devices against European regulations (1998–2001). He also led BSI’s North American medical device activities (2001–16) in achieving formal recognition as a third party under FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH) program and Health Canada’s Canadian Medical Devices Conformity Assessment System (CMDCAS) program. Brooks is recognized both domestically and internationally as an expert on medical device regulations, and regulatory and quality issues.

Dr. Laura Brown, Behavioral Scientist, National Center for Environmental Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Dr. Laura Brown works at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, leading the National Center for Environmental Health’s Safe Food Section. This team conducts research and surveillance on retail food safety and foodborne outbreaks. Dr. Brown has worked on such diverse food safety topics as ill food workers, hand hygiene, and food cooling practices.

Andrea Budgell, Acting Director, Regulatory and Legislative Affairs, Controlled Substances and Cannabis Branch, Health Canada

Andrea Budgell is the Acting Director, Regulatory and Legislative Affairs, in the Controlled Substances and Cannabis Branch of Health Canada, with responsibility for cannabis legislative and regulatory policy, cost recovery and business intelligence and market reporting.  She has worked in the area of cannabis policy since 2015, and played a significant role in the development of the Cannabis Act. Andrea has worked in a number of regulatory departments, including the Treasury Board Secretariat, where she worked on Government of Canada regulatory policy. Andrea holds a Master of Public Administration from the University of Victoria and a Master of Arts from Western University.

Mark Buxton, Missouri Rapid Response Team (MRRT) Coordinator, Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services

Since January of 2013—serves as the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (MDHSS) Coordinator for the Missouri Rapid Response Team for food and feed (MRRT).

Prior to my work as the MRRT Coordinator —

Served for eight years as a public health planner for the MDHSS Center for Emergency Response and Terrorism (CERT).  Developed emergency response plans and exercises.  Developed Missouri’s plans and conducted training for the Strategic National Stockpile Program (SNS).   Wrote after action reports and improvement plans for MDHSS for exercises and actual responses.

Barbara Cassens, Director, Office of Partnerships, Office of Partnerships and Operational Policy, Office of Regulatory Affairs, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Barbara Cassens is the Director for the Office of Partnerships (OP).  In her role as the Director of OP, she is responsible for the oversight, strategic planning, collaboration and integration with our federal, state and local partners for manufactured human and animal food safety standards, medical products safety with the goal of mutual reliance between FDA and other agencies.

Barbara began her career with the FDA in 1990 as a field investigator.  She was the Pacific Region Cooperative Programs Director and San Francisco’s District Director. Prior to joining the FDA, she worked in the private sector for Nestle, Dole Packaged Foods, and John Labatt, LLC.

Ms. Cassens holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Food Science from the Iowa State University. She is active in the Western Association of Food and Drug Officials, the Association of Food and Drug Officials, the Institute of Food Technologists and the International Association for Food Protection.

Tom M. Chiller, MD, MPHTM, Chief, Mycotic Diseases Branch, Associate Director of Global Programs, Division of Foodborne, Waterborne, and Environmental Diseases, Nation Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Tom M. Chiller, MD, MPHTM is the Chief of the Mycotic Diseases Branch. As Branch Chief, Dr. Chiller provides leadership and support for fungal disease activities nationally and internationally. With over 25 years of experience in global health, Dr. Chiller also serves as the Associate Director for Global Programs in the Division of Foodborne, Waterborne, and Environmental Diseases (DFWED). Previously, Dr. Chiller has held numerous positions in DFWED including Associate Director for Epidemiologic Science and lead of the National Antimicrobial Resistance Monitoring System for Enteric Bacteria (NARMS). He remains actively involved in antimicrobial resistance activities for fungal and enteric diseases.

Dr. Chiller received his medical and public health degrees from Tulane University.  He completed a residency in internal medicine at University of Texas, Southwestern.  He completed a fellowship in infectious diseases and mycotics at Stanford University and then joined CDC in 2001 to train in infectious disease epidemiology as an Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) officer.

LeAnn Chuboff, Vice President Technical Affairs, SQFI

LeAnn has over 30 years of foodservice experience specializing in supply chain food safety and quality assurance. Currently LeAnn is the Vice President of Technical Affairs for the Safe Quality Food (SQF) Institute responsible for the technical elements of the SQF program including the development, maintenance and technical support of the SQF Code and supporting materials. Prior to working at the SQF Institute, LeAnn worked for the National Restaurant Association Solutions as the Director of Science and Regulatory Relations. In this role, she was responsible for the technical accuracy of the ServSafe food safety program and developed program and services on food safety and food defense to fit with all segments of the restaurant industry. LeAnn has also worked for Long John Silver’s and Boston Market in corporate quality assurance where she developed food safety and vendor approval program. LeAnn graduated from Iowa State University with a B.S. in Food Science and is active with many organizations including GFSI, AFDO and the International Association for Food Protection. She sits on several committees in an effort to enhance policy and develop programs for the industry to help protect public health.

The Safe Quality Food Institute is recognized by retailers and foodservice providers around the world who require a rigorous, credible food safety management system. The SQF Program is recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) and links primary production certification to food manufacturing, distribution and agent/broker management certification. Administered by the Food Marketing Institute (FMI), SQF benefits from continual retailer feedback about consumer concerns.

Matthew Coleman, Environmental Administrator, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

In May of 1999, Matthew found his passion for Public Health when he began his career working with the Florida Department of Health (FDOH) working as a field inspector in multiple programmatic areas.  In July 2005, he earned his Registered Sanitarian(RS) and continues to maintain this credential through the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA). In 2016, Matthew, earned his Certified Professional in Food Safety (CP-FS) through NEHA.   Matthew is a graduate of International Food Protection Training Institute (IFPTI) Cohort VI.

In his current role as Environmental Administrator with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Food Safety, Bureau of Food Inspection, Matthew leads the Manufactured Food Team.  He leads and guides policy and procedures to assure a safe, wholesome and properly represented food supply through permitting and inspection of food establishments, inspection of food products, and laboratory analysis for wholesale food products stored and / or produced across Florida.  Matthew leads development and approves modification of all policy, procedures and program implementation to be in concert with goals of the Department, Division and Bureau and in the best interest of public health.

Matthew B Crist, MD, MPH Medical Officer, CDC

Dr. Matthew Crist serves as a Medical Officer on the Response Team in the Division of Healthcare Quality Promotion at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  Dr. Crist is originally from Mt. Holly, NC.  He attended Duke University for his undergraduate education and received his medical degree and masters of public health degree from the University of North Carolina.  He is board certified in internal medicine and infectious diseases having completed his internal medicine residency training at the University of Virginia and infectious diseases fellowship training at Vanderbilt University.  Before joining CDC in August 2015 Dr. Crist worked at the Tennessee Department of Health in the HAI and Antibiotic Stewardship Program, and then served as the Director of the HAI and Respiratory Disease Unit at the Georgia Department of Public Health, and subsequently as the HAI Section Director at the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.

Alonza Cruse, Director of the Office of Pharmaceutical Quality, Operations, U.S. Food & Drug Administration

Alonza Cruse is Director of the Office of Pharmaceutical Quality Operations within the FDA Office of Regulatory Affairs.  His office is responsible for all pharmaceutical inspections, working in conjunction with FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation & Research and Center for Veterinary Medicine. From 2013-2015 Mr. Cruse served as the Director (Acting) of the Office of Medical Products & Tobacco Operations within ORA. From 2000-2015, Mr. Cruse was the Director of FDA’s Los Angeles District Office. Prior to this Mr. Cruse was Director of New York District Import Operations. Mr. Cruse first joined ORA in 1983 as a microbiologist. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Medical Technology from York College (City University of New York).

Dr. Michelle Danyluk, Associate Professor of Food Science, University of Florida

Dr. Michelle Danyluk is an Associate Professor and Extension Specialist of Food Safety and Microbiology in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at the University of Florida (UF).  She is situated at the Citrus Research and Education Center in Lake Alfred, Fl.  Upon accepting her position at UF in 2007, she fulfilled her life goal of living with palm trees.  Her current research and extension interests include microbial food safety and quality, emphasizing the microbiology of fruit juices, fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts.  Michelle’s extension program includes teaching programs related to FSMA, HACCP, GAPS and other specialized food safety, security and beverage processing programs to stakeholders.  Michelle served as the PD for the USDA-funded Southern Training, Education, Extension, Outreach, and Technical Assistance Center to Enhance Produce Safety from 2015-2018, which focuses on training, education, extension, outreach, and technical assistance to prepare the Southern US produce industry for FSMA compliance. For this grant, Danyluk oversaw collaborators in 13 southeastern states, 1 territory, and with 3 non-governmental organizations.  She continues this role currently as the Co-PD for the Southern and Lead Regional Center. During her academic career at UF, she has served on numerous college, department and center committees.  Michelle received the UF Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Richard Jones Outstanding New Faculty Research Award in 2011, an Excellence Award for Assistant Professors in 2013, and a Research Foundation Professorship Award in 2015.  Michelle was elected a member of the International Commission on Microbiological Specifications for Food (ICMSF) in 2016, and has been elected to join the Executive Board of the International Association for Food Protection beginning in July 2019.

Ashley Davis, Special Events, Coordinator/Sanitarian, Tulsa City County Health Department

Ashley is an Environmental Health Specialist with the Tulsa City-County Health Department in Tulsa, Oklahoma. She obtained her BS degree in Microbiology at The University of Oklahoma in 2010. Ashley is the mobile and temporary food establishment coordinator for the Food Protection Services (FPS) program. She is responsible for overseeing the daily operations of mobile food establishments as well as reviewing proposed operations to ensure compliance with state regualtions. She is also an acting liaison between Tulsa Health Department’s FPS program and multiple city committees comprised of various regulatory authorities working together with differing code requirements to protect consumers at public or private gatherings.

Shana Davis, Senior Food Safety Manager, The Kroger Co. – Nashville Division

Shana Davis is the Senior Food Safety Manager for Kroger’s Nashville Division.  She currently oversees food safety, regulatory compliance and pest control for 100 stores in Tennessee, Kentucky and Alabama.  Shana works closely with her company’s Customer Communications Department to support Kroger’s Zero Hunger Zero Waste Campaign, which works to promote safe food donation practices and reduce waste across their company.

Shana is a graduate of Eastern Kentucky University and the University of Kentucky, with a BS in Environmental Health and a Masters in Public Health.  Before joining Kroger in 2013, Shana worked for the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department in Kentucky as a Registered Sanitarian for several years.  She oversaw the food safety inspection program before becoming the Environmental Health Coordinator for the department.

She is an active member of AFDO, CFP and AFDOSS.  Shana was also a Cohort 2 Fellow in IFPTI’s distinguished Food Protection Fellowship.  In 2013, she was named “Outstanding Sanitarian of the Year” by the Kentucky Association of Milk, Food and Environmental Sanitarians.

Stephanie Di Trapani, Special Advisor – Drug Shortages Unit, Health Canada

After completing studies in Health Promotion at Dalhousie University, Stephanie Di Trapani joined Health Canada. From 2005 – 2011, Stephanie held various roles at the Natural and Non-Prescription Health Products Directorate.  In 2011, Stephanie joined the Health Product Compliance and Enforcement Directorate in the Regulatory Operations and Enforcement Branch (ROEB). ROEB is responsible for health product compliance monitoring activities such as industry inspections and product investigations. In 2019, she took on the role as the Manager of Strategic Initiatives for the directorate. Her present focus is Drug Shortages. Prior to assuming this role, she managed compliance and enforcement activities for health products including human and veterinary drugs and natural health products, including drug shortage case management.

Ruth P. Dixon, District Director, New, Orleans District, Program Division, Director, Division of Southeast Imports, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Ms. Ruth Dixon graduated from Saint Mary-of-the Woods College with a Bachelor of Science degree May, 1987. Ms. Dixon began her career with the Food and Drug Administration December, 1987 as a Chemist with the Los Angeles District Laboratory. She later became a Consumer Safety Officer and Pesticide Coordinator in Los Angeles District (LOS-DO), and conducted a number of foreign and domestic farm inspections routinely related to microbiological outbreaks. Ms. Dixon became a Compliance Officer in LOS-DO, whereby she accomplished import and domestic compliance case work. In October, 2008 she joined FDA New Orleans District by accepting a Supervisory Consumer Safety Officer position in Memphis, TN. In December, 2011 she became Director of Import Operations and Compliance Branch, New Orleans District (NOL-DO). In November, 2014 Ms. Dixon became the District Director (DD) for New Orleans District, which encompasses the States of Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Tennessee. Upon the implementation of Program Alignment, May 15, 2017, Ms. Dixon also transitioned to the position of Program Division Director (PDD) for the Division of Southeast Imports (DSEI).

Douglas Dumont, Ph.D., General Engineer, Policy and Operations Team, Division of Clinical Science and Quality (DCEA1), Office of Clinical Evidence and Analysis (OCEA), Center for Devices and Radiological Health, Food and Drug Administration

Douglas Dumont, Ph.D., obtained his undergraduate degree and Ph.D in Biomedical Engineering from Duke University. After postdoctoral training at Vanderbilt University, Dr. Dumont joined FDA as a Staff Fellow in the CDRH Office of Surveillance and Biometrics. He currently works in the Policy and Operations Team for the Office of Clinical Evidence and Analysis (OCEA), supporting development of policies and operational processes related to clinical evidence generation and analysis. He also advises CDRH reviewers on policy issues related to medical device clinical trials and real-world evidence generation.

Bob Ehart, Senior Policy and Science, Advisor, NASDA

Bob Ehart joined NASDA in 2003 as the Animal and Plant Health Safeguarding Coordinator; he subsequently became Director of Public Policy and in 2010 moved into a position as the Senior Policy & Science Advisor for NASDA[1] so he could focus on food safety issues. Prior to joining NASDA, he ran an environmental monitoring firm focusing on identifying and mitigating risk, particularly on farms. He spent several years working for the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, where he started as a technical expert (in pesticides) and was later appointed the Department’s Executive Assistant, similar to an assistant secretary in other states. Bob also worked for the cooperative extension service in North Dakota and for a multinational chemical company, Syngenta, covering issues management and public affairs for the plant protection, animal health and biotechnology businesses. He taught in a veterinary school in Iran.

He has expertise in agricultural science, policy and communications. He was an International Farm Youth Exchange delegate to Peru and has worked in international programs areas, establishing cultural and agricultural exchange programs between the US and several foreign countries. He has worked on a wide array of agricultural policy including: food safety, environmental management issues, animal and plant health, pesticide and other environmental issues affecting agriculture, biotechnology, and the farm bill in a variety of settings—academic, government, industry and consulting—domestically and internationally.

Bob has degrees in biology, entomology and ecology. He completed his course work for a PhD in Land Resources in the Institute for Environmental Studies at the University of Wisconsin where his research focus was on the roles and limits of science in food and agricultural policy.

NASDA is the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture with offices located in Washington, DC. It is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that represents the commissioners, secretaries and directors of the departments of agriculture for the 50 states and 4 territories.

Joell A. Eifert, Director, Food Innovations Program, Department of Food Science and Technology, Virginia Tech

Joell has over 18 years of food science experience within the industrial, regulatory and academic sectors.  Her career in academia has been spent predominantly in an Extension role with her most recent position is as the Director of the Food Innovations Program.

Joell worked over 9 years in the food industry in various production settings in the areas of quality assurance and research & development, working for Nestlé and United Pet Group.  Product expertise range from animal healthcare and pharmaceuticals products to refrigerated food entrees, confections, ice cream and beverages.  She has worked on facility start-up teams for facilities producing both USDA and FDA-inspected products.  Her experiences include factory and equipment design; developing, implementing and maintaining quality and food safety programs; and validating and filing scheduled processes.

Joell has also worked for the Food and Drug Administration as an investigator in the Roanoke, VA office.

Joell Eifert Is the Director of the Food Innovations Program in the Department of Food Science and Technology. The Food Innovations Program goal is to provide the technical assistance needed for the food processing industry to produce high quality, safe, and innovative food products. One of the program’s main missions is to increase the awareness of Virginia’s food producers to matters of food safety, pertinent food regulations and general concerns associated with starting a food business.

Petrina Evans, Assistant Director, Trade Operations, U.S. Custom and Border Protection

Ms. Petrina Evans currently serves as Assistant Director of Field Operations (Trade) for the Atlanta Field Office; with responsibility for managing Field Office activities related to the Trade Process and Priority Trade Initiatives; including Agriculture Programs.  Ms. Evans also served for three years as Center Director for the Atlanta-hosted Consumer Products and Mass Merchandising Center of Excellence and Expertise.

Prior to her current post, Ms. Evans served for seven years as the Director for Agriculture Safeguarding within CBP Headquarters Office of Field Operations.  Ms. Evans started her government career in 1989 with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), and worked for APHIS in a variety of field and headquarters positions; with last position attained being Deputy Director for APHIS’ Phytosanitary Issues Management Division.  Ms. Evans holds a Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration.

Doug Farquhar, J.D., Program Director for Environmental Health, National Conference of State Legislatures

Doug Farquhar is an attorney with over 25 years experience working with policy makers on environmental and health issues.  Primarily working with state legislatures, he has testified 51 times before legislative committees in 31 states, in addition to consulting with state agency staff in every state on enlightening state policy makers.  He has written books and articles on state legislative policy, and is a columnist for the National Environmental Health Journal.


For the past 21 years, Mr. Farquhar has directed the Environmental Health Program at the National Conference of State Legislatures.  This program performs legislative analysis and outreach on state and federal environmental, health and trade laws; focusing on the delegation and authorization of federal and state laws; and provides legal and technical assistance to state legislators and agency staff on state, federal and international environmental, environmental health, and food policies. He also provides testimony before state legislative committees and task forces; reviews and comments on legislation and regulations, drafts memos, articles and books on state environmental health policies; and represents state interests before federal and international bodies.

As director of Environmental Health he works closely with federal counterparts at the:

Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

(CDC), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (CEC).

Prior to coming to NCSL, Doug worked in the Texas House of Representatives for the

Natural Resources and Appropriations Committees and for Congressman Schaefer on

Capitol Hill in Washington.  He received his law degree from the University of Denver (DU) and undergraduate from the University of Texas in Austin. He is adjunct professor in the DU graduate school of Environmental Policy and Management and at the Colorado School of Public Health.

Chris Flint, Executive Director of the Southeastern, Regional Cooperative

Chris Flint is the executive director of the Southeast Regional Cooperative, or SERC.  The SERC is a part of the Feeding America Network that provides procurement and logistics services to member food banks.  Prior to entering the nonprofit sector Chris worked for Sysco Foods for 25 years in various marketing and procurement leadership roles.  Chris earned his bachelors degree from the University of Alabama as well as a master of arts in leadership from Asbury Theological Seminary.  Chris and his wife Tara live with their three daughters in Marietta, Georgia.

Georges France, GlaxoSmithKline

Georges France is Vice President and Global Quality Lead for the Local Operating Company (LOC) at GSK Consumer Healthcare. He is responsible for setting up and managing Quality for all LOCs at Consumer Healthcare. Prior to joining GSK, Georges was Global in-Country Quality Head at Novartis OTC. Georges joined Novartis in March 2012. Previously he worked at Pfizer as a Vice President of Global Quality Strategy and Global Affiliates Quality. Prior to that, he worked at Wyeth for 12 years, spending the first six years in the French affiliate as the head for QA and Regulatory affairs. In 2005, Georges became Vice President, Quality and Compliance in Europe, Middle East and Africa. Earlier in his career, Georges spent six years with Fisons, a company in the United Kingdom that specialised in asthma. He joined Schering Plough when Rhone Poulenc Rorer acquired Fisons. Georges holds a Doctorate in Pharmacy and a post-graduate degree in Pharmacology and completed the INSEAD Advanced Management Program. He was EPFIA topic leader in the Expert working Group for the ICH Q10 guidelines as the ICH Q8, Q9 and Q10 IWG, today he is an EFPIA Expert for ICH Q12.

Robert L. Garfield, Chief Food Safety Assessment Officer & SVP, SQFI, Food Marketing Institute

Robert received a Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Cincinnati, where he specialized in marketing and finance, and a Master of Science, Agriculture specializing in Enology, from the California State University, Fresno.

Robert spent ten years in the food industry as a plant and production manager.  He worked for United Vintners, a division of Heublein, Inc., a major bottler of California wines, and then for Dairylea, Inc., and Richfood, Inc., both processors of fluid

milk and juice products.  For 23 years Robert represented the food industry to regulatory agencies and Capitol Hill detailing the scientific and technical interests of frozen food and dairy manufacturers.

Food Marketing Institute (FMI)

Robert Garfield is currently the Chief Food Safety Assessment Officer and SVP, Food Marketing Institute (FMI) responsible for managing the Safe Quality Food Institute (SQFI), an international food safety and quality management program recognized by the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI).  SQFI’s program is utilized in 32 countries in over 12,000 farm and food manufacturing facilities. Robert is a long time member of AFDO and was recognized in 2007 with the AFDO Associate Award.

SQFI is a division of FMI, the association that advocates on behalf of the food retail industry.  FMI’s members operate nearly 40,000 retail food stores and 25,000 pharmacies, representing a combined annual sales volume of almost $770 US billion.  Through programs in public affairs, food safety, research, education and industry relations, FMI offers resources and provides valuable benefits to more than 1,225 food retail and wholesale member companies in the United States and around the world.

Joann Givens, Director, Office of Human and Animal Food Operations, West, U.S. Department of Food and Drug Administration

Joann M. Givens serves as director of the Office of Human and Animal Food Operations-West, within the Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA), Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In this leadership position, Ms. Givens oversees the human and animal food program work plan, accomplishments, implementation strategies for the Food Safety Modernization Act, and program alignment advancement. She also collaborates with the Center of Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, the Center of Veterinary Medicine, ORA components, and external stakeholders.

Prior to serving in this position, Ms. Givens served as the acting regional director of the Central Region for several years, deputy regional director in the Central Region, and district director in the Detroit District.  Joann is a graduate of Berkeley College, Little Falls, NJ, and also majored in biology at Kean University, Union, NJ.  She has received numerous awards and is a member of numerous professional organizations.

Thomas Gremillion, Director, Food Policy Institute, Consumer Federation of America

Thomas Gremillion is the Director of Food Policy at the Consumer Federation of America. He oversees the research, analysis, advocacy and media outreach for the group’s food policy activities, and monitors food safety activities at USDA, FDA and in Congress, where he advocates for strong food safety protections for consumers. He also coordinates the Safe Food Coalition, a group of consumer, trade union, and foodborne illness victim organizations dedicated to reducing foodborne illness by improving government food inspection programs.

Prior to joining CFA in 2015, Gremillion practiced environmental law at Georgetown University Law Center’s Institute for Public Representation, where he represented community groups and advocacy organizations in litigation against polluters and government regulators. He also served as an associate attorney at the Southern Environmental Law Center in Chapel Hill, NC, where he specialized in transportation and land use issues.

A graduate of Harvard Law School, Gremillion is a member of the D.C. and North Carolina bars. He graduated magna cum laude from the University of South Carolina with a B.S. in mathematics, and served as a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar in Quito, Ecuador, where he received an M.A. in International Relations from La Universidad Andina Simón Bolívar.

Jonathan Gusdorff, DO, DABR, Neuroradiologist and Retail Medical Enterprise Consultant, President, Dr. Jonathan Gusdorff, LLC

Dr. Jonathan Gusdorff graduated from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, then completed a residency in Diagnostic Radiology at The Bryn Mawr Hospital. He then went on to complete a fellowship in Neuroradiology at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta. After several years in private practice, Gusdorff decided to branch out into the business world. Following the latest healthcare trends, he opened up the first urgent care center in Delaware County certified by the Urgent Care Association of America. CareSTAT Urgent Care Centers quickly grew to four locations across Delaware and Montgomery Counties and was a regular source for healthcare news affecting the Delaware Valley. Gusdorff and CareSTAT had been featured on WPVI’s Health Check report and in The Philadelphia Business Journal several times during his ownership of CareSTAT. In 2015, Gusdorff sold CareSTAT to a larger organization based in Maryland. In 2016 he helped to organize a group of professionals following Governor Wolf’s signing Act 16 (The Medical Marijuana Act) into law. He and his group applied for a permit to lawfully dispense medical marijuana, and in June, 2017, was awarded a permit to open three medical marijuana dispensaries in South Central Pennsylvania. In addition, Gusdorff has been sanctioned by the Department of Health to educate physicians, hospitals, healthcare providers and law enforcement officials about medical marijuana, its appropriate uses, the law and Pennsylvania’s program.

Lisa Hainstock, R.S., Food Safety Specialist, Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development

Lisa has worked for the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) as a Food Safety Specialist since 2002.  She started her career in environmental health in 1990 working as a sanitarian for a local health department in rural Michigan, then moved to the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality as a Non-Community Public Water Supply Consultant in 1998.   In her current position with MDARD’s Emergency Response and Enforcement Unit, she both coordinates and provides training in foodborne illness investigations, tracebacks and recalls, and works closely with the food industry, local, state and federal investigators in these events.  She has represented the Association of Food and Drug Officials on the Council to Improve Foodborne Outbreak Response (CIFOR) since 2008, and currently co-chairs the CIFOR Industry Workgroup.

Aron J. Hall, DVM, MSPH, Dipl ACVPM, Norovirus Epidemiology Team Lead, Viral Gastroenteritis Branch, Division of Viral Diseases, National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Since 2008, Dr. Hall has led the norovirus epidemiology program in the CDC Division of Viral Diseases. He received bachelors and masters degrees in public health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a doctorate of veterinary medicine from North Carolina State University. Following completion of academic and clinical training, Dr. Hall joined the CDC as an Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) Officer and was assigned to the state health department of West Virginia. In his current capacity, Dr. Hall leads surveillance systems for sporadic cases and outbreaks of norovirus, conducts research to assess transmission dynamics and risk factors for infection, and evaluates prevention and control measures. He is a recognized expert in the field, providing consultation within CDC, to state and local health departments, federal regulatory agencies, advisory committees, and international partners. Dr. Hall has authored over 100 journal articles and book chapters, has an adjunct faculty appointment at the Rollins School of Public Health of Emory University and is board certified as a diplomate in the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine (ACVPM).

Stic Harris, DVM, MPH, Director, Coordinated Outbreak Response & Evaluation (CORE) Network
U.S. Food & Drug Administration, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services

Stic Harris, DVM, MPH, joined the U.S. Food & Drug Administration in August 2017 as the new Director of the Coordinated Outbreak Response and Evaluation (CORE) Network. In this role, Dr. Harris oversees FDA’s full-time staff dedicated to preventing, detecting, and investigating outbreaks related to human food, cosmetics, and dietary supplements.

Distinguishing himself as a leader in the world of outbreak response, Dr. Harris brings with him an invaluable mix of clinical and policy experience. Formerly with the Armed Forces Health Surveillance Branch (AFHSB), the central epidemiologic resource for the U.S. military, he was part of the Alert and Response Operations Team in the Integrated Biosurveillance division, where the work is focused on monitoring infectious diseases. Dr. Harris’ team was responsible for identifying, verifying, and delivering the latest information and assessments of outbreaks affecting the Department of Defense.

Prior to his four years at AFHSB, Dr. Harris was a veterinary medical officer at the Department of Homeland Security. He was based in the Office of Health Affairs, where he was the liaison to One Health, the global initiative to unite human and veterinary medicine. He also worked on strategy for the National Biosurveillance Integration Center, which integrates information about biological threats to human, animal, plant and environmental health, and served as the acting Biodefense Advisor.

From 2009-2010, he was a AAAS/AVMA (American Association for the Advancement of Science/American Veterinary Medical Association) Congressional Science and Technology Policy Fellow in the office of Minnesota Senator Al Franken, working on health care, food safety, infectious disease, agriculture, and biodefense. Additionally, Dr. Harris served as Senator Al Franken’s lead on the Food Safety Modernization Act during the congressional review and committee hearings.

Dr. Harris also spent several years working as an epidemiologist in both the Texas and Georgia state health departments on such varied topics as lead poisoning prevention, prion diseases, arthritis, bioterrorism, maternal and child health, and cancer. Other former positions of note include time as an emergency medical technician, a research associate in emergency medicine, and a professional hockey player.

Dr. Harris has a Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from the University of Georgia and a Master’s in Public Health in molecular epidemiology and public health genetics from the University of Michigan.

Julie Henderson, Director, Division of Food and General Environmental Services, Virginia Department of Health

Julie Henderson is the Director of Food and General Environmental Services in the Office of Environmental Health Services with the Virginia Department of Health.  Her division oversees a broad range of programs:  retail food (restaurants, mobile food units, temporary food establishments, hospitals, nursing homes etc.); campgrounds and summer camps; public swimming pools; hotels and motels; bedding and upholstery, childhood lead and migrant labor camps. Julie lives in Richmond and enjoys hiking, kayaking and traveling with her husband.

Linton Hopkins, Chef and Founder, Resurgens Hospitality Group

Linton Hopkins is the internationally acclaimed chef and owner of Resurgens Hospitality Group, the Atlanta-based company that includes local favorites Restaurant Eugene, Holeman and Finch Public House, Holeman and Finch Bottle Shop, H&F Burger, Hop’s Chicken and C. Ellet’s. The Atlanta native is known for his deceptively simple cooking style that celebrates local produce and community-driven cuisine, with restaurants that embody his Southern heritage.

With deep Atlanta roots, Hopkins is a graduate of Westminster and Emory University, as well as the Culinary Institute of America. In 2004, he opened Restaurant Eugene with his wife Gina, the co-founder and co-CEO of Resurgens Hospitality Group. The duo proceeded to open Holeman and Finch Public House in 2008, followed by Holeman and Finch Bottle Shop in 2011, two locations of H&F Burger and Hop’s Chicken at Ponce City Market in 2015. They most recently opened C. Ellet’s in summer 2017, a modern American steakhouse in The Battery Atlanta.

In 2009, Hopkins was named one of Food & Wine’s Best New Chefs and in 2012, Food & Wine named him Best of the Best. Hopkins also received the prestigious award of James Beard Foundation’s Best Chef: Southeast in 2012 and was named champion of Iron Chef: Atlanta, moving on to take the silver medal on Iron Chef: America after facing Japanese chef Masaharu Morimoto.

Hopkins and Gina are true stewards to the Atlanta community. The two co-founded the Peachtree Road Farmers Market, now in its 11th Season, and began working hand-in-hand with Delta Airlines in 2013 to provide the first locally sourced menu celebrating farmers and artisans in the airlines’ history on international flights from Atlanta to Europe.

The Atlanta Braves are also a valued partner of the Hopkins’ team, with two H&F Burger outposts at new SunTrust Park, in addition to C. Ellet’s steakhouse directly outside the stadium.

Hopkins and Gina, along with their son and daughter, share a passion for cooking at home, surrounded by family. They are committed to and involved in the ongoing good-food movement, with endless support of the community and dedicated efforts to making Atlanta a better place for food and experiences through local ingredients and farmer connectivity. Linton has served as President of the Southern Foodways Alliance and partnered with Michelle Obama to celebrate the First Lady’s Chef’s Move to Schools Initiative, and additionally supports the James Beard Women in Culinary Leadership Program. He insists that making mayonnaise from scratch, and teaching others to do the same, can change the world.

Courtland Imel, CEO, Ceutical Labs

Courtland Imel is the founder (2003), owner and CEO of Ceutical Laboratories, Inc.  Mr. Imel has over 30 years’ experience in FDA Regulated Industries including the Medical Device, Pharmaceutical, Cosmetic, Food, and Nutraceutical Industries. Mr. Imel is a member of AFDO (Association of Food and Drug Officials) and received the 2017 AFDO Associate Award. He has served as Director of Quality Assurance, Quality Control and Regulatory Affairs for several major companies. He has held key positions with M&M Mars, Allergan, Inc., ILEX Oncology, Aronex Pharmaceuticals, Mill Biopharmaceuticals, International Isotopes, Avail Medical Products, and Carrington Laboratories, Inc. Mr. Imel holds a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Baylor University.

Douglas (DJ) Irving, EHS-Net Food Coordinator, Tennessee Department of Health

DJ was an environmentalist for 5 years with the Metro Public Health Department in Nashville. He obtained his MPH with an emphasis in epidemiology in 2015. DJ is currently employed by the Tennessee Department of Health in the Environmental Epidemiology Program and is responsible for the implementation of the National Environmental Assessment Reporting System (NEARS), providing foodborne outbreak support, and performing food safety research funded through CDC’s EHS-Net Food.

Valerie Jensen, Associate Director, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

CAPT Valerie Jensen is the Associate Director of the Drug Shortage Staff at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. She received a B.S. degree in Pharmacy from the University of Iowa in 1990 and upon graduation was commissioned as an officer in the U.S. Public Health Service.  She completed an American Society of Health-System Pharmacists Specialized Residency in Ambulatory Care at the White River Indian Health Service hospital in White River, Arizona in 1991. She worked as a clinical pharmacist for Indian Health Service hospitals in Arizona and New Mexico for nine years before joining the Food and Drug Administration. She has been with the FDA for the past 20 years leading FDA efforts to work with manufacturers to mitigate and resolve shortages of medications for the patients who depend on them.

Anne Johnson, District Director, Philadelphia District Office, Program, Division Director, Bioresearch, Monitoring Division, Office of Bioresearch Monitoring Operations, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Anne E. Johnson is the District Director of FDA’s PHI-DO and the Program Division Director of OBIMO Division 1 (East).  As the District Director, she is the most senior FDA representative and point of contact for the states of Pennsylvania and Delaware.  In this capacity, she remains responsible for state liaison and emergency response activities, collaboration/partnerships with other federal, state, and local agencies, supports regulatory functions and meetings, maintains oversight for employee support and safety, and is responsible for FDA facilities located within the district.

As the Program Division Director of BIMO Division I (East), she is responsible for providing overall executive direction, in an operations capacity, for bioresearch monitoring activities in the eastern third of the United States, including Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.  This includes coverage and inspections of clinical investigations, non-clinical investigations, institutional review boards, sponsors, monitors, laboratories, adverse events/experience reporting, risk evaluation and mitigation strategies, and select pre-approval inspectional programs.   She also coordinates foreign inspections for the OBIMO program as the representative on the Foreign Inspection Coordination Team.

Ms. Johnson started with FDA as an investigator and then became a compliance officer, specializing in enforcement and regulatory follow-up in the biologics, biotech drugs and biological devices worldwide.  In 2005, she became a supervisory investigator and district food monitor, advancing as Deputy District Director and ultimately the District Director in 2015 and Program Division Director in 2017. She has researched and provided briefing and background information for use in preparation for congressional hearings and testimony, worked on national special security events, and overseen the execution of federal contracts. Ms. Johnson is active on the speaking circuit, presenting at conferences for regulators, industry, academia and stakeholders.  She is an FDA trainer for managers, supervisors and compliance officers. She is holds a B.A. in Chemistry, from Rutgers University.  Ms. Johnson and her husband of 28+ years reside in New Jersey and have two sons and a daughter.

Tracy Johnstone, McDonald’s Restaurant, Owner Operator

I have been working in the McDonald’s system for over 25 years. I have served in many owner/operator leadership roles within the brand and currently serve as the Vice President of the Women’s Operator Network and serve as a representative on the Operator’s National Advertising Fund.

I own and operator seven McDonald’s Restaurants in Northwest Florida.  I am a teacher at heart so training and developing people in our organization is very important to me.  I believe that Food Safety is not a program but a culture to be created and nurtured.  Never did that prove so true as when we began to get restaurants open after the devastation of Hurricane Michael.

Josh Jordan, REHS, Environmental Health Regional Specialist, EH Program Supervisor I, Division of Public Health, Food Protection and Facilities Branch, North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services

Josh Jordan began working for the NC DHHS as an Environmental Health Regional Specialist in 2016 and became the team leader for the Western NC Food Protection Team in 2017. Josh supports a team of 4 other Environmental Health Regional Specialists located in the Western part of NC and supports Catawba, Iredell, Lincoln and Mecklenburg counties, including the metropolitan area of Charlotte. He started his career in Environmental Health in 2008 with the Davidson County Health Department in Lexington, NC. Josh graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biology from High Point University in 2006.

Ernest M. Julian, Ph.D., Chief, Center for Food Protection, Rhode Island Department of Health

Ernest Julian, Ph.D. has served as Chief of the Center for Food Protection for the Rhode Island Department of Health for the last 29 years.  Prior to this, he was with the Connecticut Department of Health for 14 years.  He has served as AFDO’s representative to the Council to Improve Foodborne Outbreak Response (CIFOR), and the CDC FSMA Surveillance Workgroup.  He is a co-author of the CIFOR Guidelines, and a Lead Instructor for Louisiana State University’s Managing Food Emergencies course.  He is also an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Brown University.  He is a recipient of the Wiley Award, the AFDO President’s Award, the FDA Commissioner’s Special Citation, and the CDC & ATSDR Honor Award.  He is also incoming President of AFDO.

Diane Kelsch, Retail Food Specialist, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Diane is a U.S. Public Health Service Officer assigned to the U.S. Food & Drug Administration and is based out of Maitland, FL.  She has been a Retail Food Specialist since 2010 and is responsible for promoting the Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards, conducting Food Code standardizations, and providing training and technical assistance to state, local and tribal regulatory agencies.   CAPT Kelsch has a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Geology and a Master of Science in Environmental and Public Health from the University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire.

Patrick Kennelly, Program Director, Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO)

Patrick Kennelly is a Program Director for the Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO), and currently manages the Manufactured Food Regulatory Program Alliance and Retail Program Standards Grant Program Cooperative Agreements.  Prior to joining AFDO, Patrick worked for the California Department of Public Health for 28 years.  Prior to his retirement from CDPH, Patrick was the Chief of the Food Safety Section and was responsible for overseeing the Department’s statewide food safety operations which include inspection and investigation of processed food manufacturers and distributors; investigation of food-borne illness outbreaks, food contamination and tampering events, and food recalls; and development and delivery of food safety education to the food processing industry. Patrick has directed and overseen numerous complex food-borne illness outbreak investigations, environmental investigations, tracebacks, and food recalls during his tenure.

Patrick previously served as a member of the California Food and Agriculture Defense Steering Committee and the California Organic Advisory Board.  Patrick has also served as the President of the Western Association of Food and Drug Officials (WAFDO) and served on the Board as a Member at Large in 2016 and 2017.  Patrick currently serves as a Governing Council Member and Co-Chair for FDA’s Partnership for Food Protection (PFP), and previously served as an Advisory Board Member for the Western Institutes for Food Safety and Security (WIFSS), and the Center for Produce Safety (CPS).

Bonnie Kissler, Food Safety and Inspection Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture

Bonnie Kissler has over 20 years of experience in the prevention and control of infectious diseases. Currently, she is the Deputy Director within the Applied Epidemiology Staff at the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). Bonnie has coordinated and managed over 400 multistate and multi-agency foodborne illness investigations at the local, state, and federal levels. Between 2009 and 2018, she was a Senior Epidemiologist with FSIS stationed at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention within the Outbreak Response and Prevention Branch.

Adam Kramer, Environmental Health Officer, National Center for Environmental Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Dr. Adam Kramer is an Environmental Health Officer with Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Environmental Health’s food safety team.  He works primarily with the National Environmental Assessment Reporting System and the Environmental Health Specialists network.  Adam has over 20 years of experience at the local and federal levels doing food safety work.

Captain Jane Kreis, Training Officer, Pharmaceuticals, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

CAPT Kreis is a Pharmacy Officer in the U.S. Public Health Service and currently the Pharma Training Officer for the Office of Training and Education of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.  As a clinical pharmacist, she was involved with the initial GUSTO trials while working at Good Samaritan Hospital in Dayton, Ohio. She served as a clinical pharmacist and staff development training officer at the Phoenix Indian Medical Center for the Indian Health Service. She continues to maintain her clinical skills by working as an inpatient clinical pharmacist at Travis Air Force Base weekly. Prior to her current position, CAPT Kreis served as a drug manufacturing and clinical research investigation for the Seattle District Office of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. She continues to conduct clinical research investigations for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration both domestically and internationally. Her current work at FDA involves coordination and implementation of training associated with FDA regulated products and lead Basic Life Support Instructor. She has done details in the Pacific Region as Deputy Regional Food and Drug Director, Acting Supervisory Consumer Safety Officer, Acting Director of Investigations and Acting District Director for San Francisco District, Los Angeles District and Cincinnati District. She has also done details for the Office of Training and Education as a Quality Manager and Acting Remote Supervisor.  Her Public Health Service deployments have included emergency response efforts for hurricanes and wildfires in the role of a clinical pharmacist, Administration and Finance and Planning Chief.  She is currently the Team Commander for Region 9 Regional Incident Support Team.

David Lawrence, Environmental Health Specialist III, Fairfax County Health Department, Virginia

David Lawrence is an Environmental Health Specialist III with the Fairfax County Health Department (Virginia). He has over 20 years of experience administering the County’s food code to retail food establishments and leads activities to improve conformance with the Retail Program Standards. He served as the Certified Food Program Inspection/Training Officer for the food safety program staff for 13 years. Since 2002, David has contributed in some capacity to the Conference for Food Protection by attending biennial meetings, serving on multiple committees and on Council I – Laws & Regulations and Council II – Administration, Education & Certification. He served as Council II Chair for the 2016 – 2018 biennium. David is the Conference Chair for the 2018 – 2020 biennium and the Local Regulatory Representative for the Mid-Atlantic Region until 2022.

Morgan Lowder Retail Food Standards, Coordinator, South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control

Morgan Lowder has served as the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control’s Retail Standards Coordinator since 2017. In this capacity, he has worked to increase the Department’s conformance with the nine Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards. Prior to his career at DHEC, Morgan earned a Master of Public Administration degree from American University and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of South Carolina.

Terence Macaig, Vermont State Legislator

Terry Macaig is a member of the Vermont House of Representatives, serving in his sixth two-year term as a Representative for the Town of Williston. He also serves the Town as Chair of the Selectboard which he has done for 14 years and was Town Health Officer for 27 years. He is retired from the Vermont Department of Health where he last served as Chief of Operations for the Division of Environmental Health and Director of the Food and Lodging program. He is an honorary member of AFDO, served as Secretary/Treasurer, is a Wiley Award and NEFDOA Eaton Smith Award winner and is currently the Treasurer of the AFDO Endowment Foundation.

Robert Mancini, Environmental Health Officer, Government of Canada

Rob Mancini currently works for Roquette Canada as the Integrated Management Systems Coordinator. Prior to this role,  Rob worked as the Canadian food safety and sanitation lead with SealedAir. He has vast experience and knowledge in the field of food safety, with specific emphasis on alternate modes of food safety training. Rob has more than 15 years’ experience in Regulatory Compliance and as a Certified Public Health Inspector. In Canada, he provided expert advice on revisions made to the Canadian Food Retail and Food Services Code and Federal/Provincial/Territorial National Guidelines for Food Safety Training.

Rob hosted and provided research for the television series “Kitchen Crimes” for Food Network Canada, H.G.T.V. (U.S.) and Discovery Asia. Rob has done numerous radio and television interviews across Canada on varying topics pertaining to food safety. He has provided expert opinion on food safety for varying levels of Government in Canada and is an active speaker on food safety and an author on Barfblog.   He currently holds a Master’s Degree in Food Safety through Kansas State University.

Eric D. Martin, R.S., Director of Food Safety, Texas Roadhouse

Director of Food Safety for Texas Roadhouse Inc. for the past 5 years.  Responsible for development of all Food Safety Systems from Recipes, employee responsibility, to food safety technology.  Role also includes partnership with Supplier food safety standards and Health Departments interactions. Prior to coming to Texas Roadhouse, spent 10 years with Margaritaville as the Director of Food Safety and Quality Assurance.  In addition, 13 years was spent with Darden Restaurants in a variety of positions.

A member of International Association for Food Protection; was previous chair of the program committee; Served as President of the Florida Association for Food Protection: A member of CFP and has previously served on Council I: and has served as co-chair of the National Restaurant Association QA Executive Study Group.

Degree in Microbiology and Cell Science from the University of Florida.

Reside in Louisville Kentucky with wife Pam (of 33 years).  I have two children and one granddaughter.

Lynne Melendez, Director CAPA Management, Janssen

Lynne Melendez is Director, CAPA Management in the PV CAPA Center of Excellence at Janssen where she is responsible to proactively evaluate, align, and improve the global PV CAPA process including Oversight, Governance, Processes, and Systems for PV CAPAs. Lynne supports the development of PV inspection and internal audit responses and she participates in Health Authority inspections and audits as a CAPA process/system subject matter expert. Lynne’s career spans the Medical Device, Consumer, and Pharmaceutical sectors of J&J. Lynne’s previous roles include PV Operations in Medical Safety and over 20 years of experience in quality and compliance for medical devices and drugs.

James K.  Middleton, III, Executive Director, Office of Community Sanitation, Bureau of Food Safety and Community Sanitation

James Middleton is an Administrative Public Health Sanitarian with a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Chemistry and currently holds the title of Executive Director of the Office of Community Sanitation within the Bureau of Food Safety and Community Sanitation (BFSCS) at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH).  Mr. Middleton started with the DOHMH as a Public Health Sanitarian in 1988 and served as Director of the Office of Compliance and Code Enforcement within BFSCS from 1996 to 2006 where he was responsible for overseeing the Final Inspection Program for Food Service Establishments and the Smoking Regulation Enforcement Program.

In 2006, Mr. Middleton, assumed the position of Executive Director, and in that capacity has been directly responsible for managing a number of regulatory inspection programs to ensure the safe service of food in New York City, including mobile food vending enforcement, temporary food establishments, public and private schools, soup kitchens, NYS Office for the Aging sites, correctional facilities, shelters, group homes, senior centers and  day treatment centers among other facilities providing food service to special populations. In addition, Mr. Middleton managed the City’s Window Fall Prevention and Summer Day Camp programs and later the Summer Feeding Surveillance Program. He is currently the Chairperson of the Window Guard Policy and Acceptance Board overseeing approval of applications for new window guards and requests for variances.

During his 30 years of service with DOHMH, Mr. Middleton has been involved in numerous DOHMH and BFSCS initiatives including the design and implementation of the Bureau’s use of handheld computers for new inspection programs, the Department’s restaurant letter grading system, creation of the Mobile Food Vending Inspection System (MoVIS) and most recently heads DOHMH’s Mobile Food Vending Inspection Letter Grading Program.

Bob Miller, PhD, Senior Vice President of Quality, Gilead Sciences, Inc.

Bob Miller, Ph.D. is Senior Vice President of Quality at Gilead and has more than 30 years of experience in the Pharmaceutical and Biotechnology industry. Prior to joining Gilead Sciences he was President of his own company Quality Compliance Management, LLC., VP Compliance at Johnson & Johnson, VP QA Consumer Sector at Johnson & Johnson, VP Quality US and PR at Pfizer.  Bob held various positions of increasing levels of responsibility within Warner Lambert, Bayer, and Lerderle Laboratories.

Dr. Miller received his Ph.D. in Pharmaceutical Chemistry from Rutgers University College of Pharmacy, New Brunswick, NJ and B.S. in Pharmacy, Rutgers University College of Pharmacy, New Brunswick, NJ.

Jonathan Miller, Esquire, Frost, Brown and Todd, LLC 

Jonathan Miller, the Member in Charge of the Frost Brown Todd law firm in Lexington, Kentucky, has been elected twice to statewide office; authored three books on faith, public policy and crisis management; graduated Phi Beta Kappa and with high honors from Harvard’s college and law school; serves as a Contributor to The Daily Beast and Kentucky Sports Radio; played straight man on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart; reached the final table in the World Series of Poker; and with his summer camp sweetheart, raised two remarkable twenty-something daughters.

Since 2011, Miller has practiced law at the Lexington office of Frost Brown Todd, a full-service law firm with offices in Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee and Indiana, and focuses on applying the crisis management tools he learned in politics to the legal, public relations, and regulatory challenges faced by his clients.

Over the past four years, Miller has emerged as one of the nation’s leading advocates for the legalization of industrial hemp, and upon leading successful lobbying efforts that laid the groundwork for the current hemp pilot program regime, Miller serves as trusted counsel to dozens of companies in the industrial hemp space, with his full-service complement of law partners offering client counsel on issues ranging from intellectual property to corporate transactions to FDA regulation.  Miller helped lead the successful legal battle against the DEA’s 2014 efforts to ban the importation of hemp seeds for Kentucky pilot programs, and now serves as general counsel to the U.S. Hemp Roundtable, a leading national grass-tops organization committed to securing congressional passage of permanent legalization of hemp

In his nearly two decades of public service, Miller held numerous senior positions in state and federal government, including two terms as Kentucky’s elected State Treasurer, serving as Kentucky’s Secretary of Finance and Administration, as Deputy Chief of Staff of the U.S. Department of Energy, and as Legislative Director for Congressman Jim Cooper (D-TN).

Vetta Mills, Environmental HealthManager, South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control

Veta Mills serves as a member of the Standardization team for South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control’s Division of Food Protection. In this role, she assists in the development of uniform and consistent inspections in all types of retail food establishments. Veta holds a B.A. in Public Health from the University of South Carolina as well as a Master’s degree in Health Administration from Webster University.

Cathy Montie, Owner, Absolute Tattoo Inc

Cathy Montie is the owner of Absolute Tattoo Inc which encompasses Absolute Tattoo, Piercing, and Permanent Cosmetics in San Diego, California, which also includes Cathy Montie Body Art Training Company (CathyMontie.com) that provides approved Bloodborne pathogen control training classes as well as other safety and procedural training to body art professionals. We customize ECIPP’s Exposure Control and Infection Prevention Plan for our industry. Cathy is an OSHA Authorized Outreach (Industry-Specific) Trainer and serves on the California State Steering Committee, NEHA and AFDO Body Art committee. In providing training she helps unite the body art industry and the regulatory agencies in the common goal of safe body art.

Ellen F. Morrison, Assistant Commissioner for Medical Products and Tobacco Operations, Office of Regulatory Affairs, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’

Ms. Morrison is the Assistant Commissioner for Medical Products and Tobacco Operations (ACMPTO) in the Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA) at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) leading a team that serves as focal point for coordination and management of ORA’s medical product and tobacco field activities.  In 2002, FDA named Ms. Morrison the Director of Emergency Operations, Office of Crisis Management, where she directed and coordinated FDA’s emergency preparedness and response activities with federal, state, local, and international agencies, becoming the first Director of the Office of Crisis Management in 2003. She returned to ORA first as acting in 2012 and then officially in 2013, as the Assistant Commissioner for Operations. In 2017, she took on the role of Assistant Commissioner for Medical Products and Tobacco Operations for ORA.

Brian Nummer, PhD, Extension Food Safety Specialist and Professor in the Department of Nutrition, Dietetics and Food Sciences, Utah State University

Dr. Nummer is currently the Extension Food Safety Specialist and Professor in the Department of Nutrition, Dietetics and Food Sciences at Utah State University. His specialty is retail and food service food safety and small business food safety (manufacturing). Dr Nummer is a subject matter expert in food microbiology relevant to almost all food commodities (meats, poultry, seafood, ROP, low moisture foods, refrigerated foods, and more). He is a subject matter expert in the US FDA model Food Code, Sanitation, Employee behavior regarding food safety, training and education, HACCP, and GFSI (ISO 22000). Dr. Nummer is fluent in the new FSMA PC For Human Foods and is an FSPCA approved lead trainer, FDA Juice HACCP, Seafood HACCP and USDA Meat HACCP. He has also worked in food packaging, bottled water and egg industry HACCP. Dr. Nummer has piqued his scientific interests in charcuterie, Peking Duck, Kefir, Kombucha, Koumiss, Nut milk cheese, foods in oils, nutritional and dietetic supplements, crickets as food, shrubs (not the bushes, the vinegar extracts), and many more exotic food products.

Chef Kevin Ouzts, The Spotted Trotter Charcuterie

Kevin Ouzts is the Executive Chef/Owner/Charcutier of The Spotted Trotter Charcuterie, which he opened in June 2009 after an inspirational education at The Fatted Calf and The French Laundry in Northern California.  A graduate of Le Cordon Bleu and former sous chef under James Beard Award Winning Chef Linton Hopkins at Restaurant Eugene, Chef Ouzts describes The Spotted Trotter, his first business opened in 2010, as a labor of love where he concentrates on “making good food the right way” by prioritizing the use of humanely-sourced proteins and sustainable ingredients from in and around the Southeast.  Ouzts’s products – which include Southern-inspired salumi made with Black Pepper and Sorghum, Toasted Peanut, Cayenne, fresh sausages, crepinettes, pates, and rillettes, just to name a few – are instantly recognizable because of his mantra of focusing on the “details” in good meat and making it the right way.    Chef Ouzts is certainly on his way to giving Atlanta and the South a powerful voice in the world of charcuterie, long-dominated by Europe and the American Northeast. Currently you can find The Spotted Trotter Boutique Batched Charcuterie and meats in over 48 states, as well as Delta first class flights to Europe from Atlanta. The Spotted Trotter Charcuterie can also be found at stadiums around the south like Miami Dolphins, Atlanta Falcons and Carolina Panthers to name a few and can also be found at Fine Hotels, Restaurants and Gourmet Grocers around the Country!!

Andre Pierce, Environmental Health and Safety Director, Wake County Environmental Services, North Carolina

Andre Pierce is the Director of Environmental Health and Safety Division in Wake County, North Carolina.  He began his public health career in 1987 and has worked in a number of areas of environmental health.  He became the director of the Division in 2007 and enrolled the program in the FDA Program Standards in 2008.  Since that time, Wake County has worked actively on the Program Standards and now claims six of them.  Wake County completed its second risk factor study in 2015, which showed improvement in a number of risk factors, due in large part to the adoption of the FDA Food Code in 2012.  Wake County has participated in three cohorts of the NACCHO Mentorship Program, and has received grant funding through AFDO to support its quality assurance initiatives.

Donald A. Prater, DVM, Associate Commissioner for Imported Food Safety, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Office of Food Policy and Response (OFPR)

Dr. Donald A. Prater is the Associate Commissioner for Imported Food Safety.  In his current capacity, reporting to the Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response (FPR), he serves as a member of OFPR’s executive leadership team providing direction and management to all imported food safety programs under the jurisdiction of the Deputy Commissioner FPR.  In addition, he serves as a senior scientific advisor and technical expert, supporting the Deputy Commissioner FPR on matters related to human and animal food safety and the implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) to ensure the safety of the U.S. food supply.

Previously, Dr. Prater was the Assistant Commissioner for Food Safety Integration serving as the principal spokesperson on behalf of FDA’s Foods and Veterinary Medicine Program for imports discussions with external stakeholders, including foreign governments, as well as being responsible for import-related strategic resource planning activities.  During his FDA tenure, Dr. Prater was Director of FDA’s Europe Office in Brussels, Belgium and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Country Representative to the European Union.

Dr. Prater received a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine (Government and Corporate track) in 1996.  Following a three-year residency in anatomic pathology, he joined FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) in 1999 as a Veterinary Medical Officer.  He served in several roles including Leader of the Aquaculture Drugs Team, CVM Pathologist, and Director of the Division of Scientific Support.

Jason Reagan, Program Manager, Gwinnett, Newton & Rockdale Counties, Georgia

Jason Reagan currently holds the position of District Environmental Health Director for Gwinnett, Newton and Rockdale County Health Departments in Georgia.  Jason began his career in Environmental Health back in 2008 as an entry level Environmental Health Specialist in Newton County.  He graduated from The University of Georgia in 2000 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture and a minor in Environmental Soil Science.

Barry Rhodes, Director, Recall Management and Technical Analysis Division, Office of Field Operations, Food Safety Inspection Staff, U.S. Department of Agriculture

Mr. Barry Rhodes is the Director of the Recall Management and Technical Analysis Division with USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).  In this position, Mr. Rhodes leads FSIS’s Import Operations Branch in addition to directing product recall activities and other technical analyses related to the inspecting meat, poultry, and egg products.  Mr. Rhodes began his career with FSIS in 2003 as a poultry slaughter inspector.  Since that time, Mr. Rhodes served as an FSIS import inspector in Newark, NJ, and as an import surveillance and liaison officer coordinating with U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, and other agency officers to investigate and control ineligible and adulterated imported meat, poultry, and egg products.  Mr. Rhodes also served for seven (7) years as FSIS’s representative stationed at CBP’s National Targeting Center and their Commercial Targeting and Analysis Center performing cargo targeting activities for FSIS.

Michael Roberson, MS, CFS, CP-FS, Director of Corporate Quality Assurance, Publix Super Markets, Inc.

Michael Roberson is a native of Memphis, TN.  He obtained a bachelor’s degree in microbiology from Mississippi State University and a master’s degree in food safety from College of Veterinary Medicine at Michigan State University.  Michael joined Publix Super Markets in 2005.  His team leads food safety, brand integrity, quality assurance and compliance programs for the company.  Under his leadership, Publix was recognized in 2013 by the International Association for Food Protection with the Black Pearl Award for Corporate Excellence in Food Safety and Quality.  Publix went on to be recognized by the SQF Institute in 2015 as the SQF Food Processor and Distributor of the Year.  Michael is an active member of the Association of Food and Drug Officials, the Conference for Food Protection, the Institute of Food Technologists and the International Association for Food Protection.  For many years, Michael has volunteered with the Partnership for Food Safety Education, and he currently serves on the Partnership’s board of directors.  In 2009, Michael testified before A U.S. Senate committee at a hearing entitled, “Keeping America’s Families Safe:  Reforming the Food Safety System.”  Over the years, Publix has collaborated with the Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance and the International Food Protection Training Institute for the advancement of food safety training programs to help advance the Food Safety Modernization Act.  Michael was recently appointed to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Board of Scientific Counselors FSMA Food Safety Workgroup to collaborate with other national food safety leaders to help drive strategic food safety improvements for the betterment of public health.

Michael Rogers, Assistant Commissioner for Human and Animal Food Operations, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Michael C. Rogers is the acting assistant commissioner for human and animal food (HAF) operations in the Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA), focusing on inspection and compliance related issues in the human and animal food programs, overseeing the program directors for east and west HAF operations as well as state cooperative programs. Mr. Rogers joined the FDA in 1991 as a field investigator in the Baltimore District. He then became a supervisory investigator at the Northern Virginia Resident Post, a branch director at FDA headquarters, the director of the Division of Field Investigations, and was later selected as the director of FDA’s Latin American Office.

Mr. Rogers has a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry and zoology from North Carolina State University, and a master’s degree in management from the University of Maryland University College.

Yvonne Salfinger, Project Manager, Laboratory Accreditation, Association of Food and Drug Officials

Yvonne Salfinger is a microbiologist was previously the Chief for the Bureau of Food Laboratories, Division of Food Safety, with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Food Safety in 2012.  She went to the Division of Food Safety initially as the Quality Manager to pursue ISO/IEC 17025 accreditation for the Division laboratories in 2002; accreditation was accomplished in 2007.  She was also involved with the Food Emergency Response Network, working on several activities involving analysis of foods during emergency events, including Standard Operating Procedures.  Prior to that, she worked for the Bureau of Public Health Laboratories, Florida Department of Health for 20 years, working with tuberculosis and other infectious diseases.  Since retiring from the State of Florida in 2012, she is currently a consultant on a FDA cooperative agreement to assist with the implementation of ISO/IEC 17025 across the regulatory food testing laboratories in the US, working with APHL and AFDO.

Pete Salsbury, Project Manager/Health Scientist, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN), Retail Food Protection Staff, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Pete Salsbury is a Health Scientist / Project Manager in the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN), Retail Food Protection Staff. Pete’s projects include work with FDA’s National Retail Food Team’s Steering Committee, a Cooperative Agreement with the National Association of County & City Health Officials (NACCHO) on Retail Food Safety policy, a Food Code research contract with AFDO and food safety partnership projects with the Restaurant and Retail Food Store industries. Pete previously has worked at CFSAN as a science policy analyst and a Special Assistant in CFSAN’s Office of the Center Director.

Adam Saltman, M.D., Ph.D., Medical Officer, Office of Compliance, Center for Devices and Radiological Health, U.S. Food & Drug Administration

Dr. Saltman studied and trained in biochemistry, medicine, and surgery at Harvard and Columbia Universities, and is board certified in general surgery, cardiothoracic surgery, and clinical informatics. In 2017, Dr. Saltman left his practice in cardiac surgery to work full time at FDA, something he had done part-time since 2008. He has experience in premarket review, compliance, and is now a member of the Clinical and Scientific Policy team in the new Office of Product Evaluation and Quality at the Center for Devices and Radiological Health. Two of his biggest interests presently, are developing decision analysis tools for device reviewers, and revamping the Center’s shortages prevention program.

Pamela J. Schofield, Ph.D. ,Vice President, Quality Assurance, The Procter & Gamble Company

Pamela Schofield is Vice President, Quality Assurance.  Pamela joined P&G’s R&D Organization in 1987, after earning a B.S. in Chemistry from Wayne State University and a Ph.D. in Chemistry from the University of Cincinnati.

Pamela’s professional development at P&G has provided her a variety of experiences in multiple P&G organizations.  She has predominantly spent her career in Health Care both OTC and Rx.  During that period, Pamela has managed multiple pharmaceutical innovations from discovery to market deployment and led global and regional partnerships with multiple companies.  She was responsible for managing the alliances with Sanofi-Aventis, Wyeth-Ayerst, Lonza, Nastech, and Dong-Wha. In 2005, she was appointed Director, New Drug Development, Medical & Technical Affairs followed by an assignment in Global Pharmaceuticals R&D/Supply Chain where she was responsible for the growth of Actonel to >80 countries and capability development for R&D.  From 2010-2011, Pamela moved to Global Analytical HeaIth Care where she expanded Analytical in Asia and was appointed Director of Global Quality Assurance for P&G’s Personal Health, Pet Care and Snacks organizations.   In 2011, she was appointed Vice President, Corporate Research & Development and was responsible for Analytical, Microbiology, Biotechnology, Clinical, Statistics, Modeling & Simulation, Quantitative Sciences, Data Management Capabilities, Security and Corporate Digital Program.  In January 2018, she was appointed Vice President, Global Quality Assurance.

Dina Scott, Total Quality Manager, Darden Inc.

Dina Scott is a Total Quality Manager (TQM) for

Darden Inc.  Dina’s diverse professional

background includes over 20 years of experience in

food safety consulting, bilingual (Spanish and English) multi-level training,

auditing, management, and extensive experience  in HACCP development and auditing food safety systems. She is a SQF registered trainer and consultant, a certified HACCP trainer (International HACCP Alliance), and a Certified Quality Auditor (American Society of Quality).

As a Senior Total Quality Manager, Dina works closely with Purchasing, Operations, Culinary and Training to help develop and implement food safety and sanitation processes. She also serves as a liaison between restaurants and the local health departments that inspect them. Dina uses her fluency in spoken and written Spanish to augment all of her professional skills.  She maintains professional memberships with ASQ, Georgia Food Safety and Defense Task Force, The International Association for Food Protection and the Georgia Association for Food Protection. She is the current chair of the Developing Food safety Professionals PDG and sits on the program committee for the GAFP

Dina has specific manufacturing experience in red meat, pharmaceutical and beverage processing. She has developed programs to address issues related to Listeria, sanitation and HACCP verification. She has been published in industry trade publications such as Meat and Poultry and presented at the American Meat Association’s Food Safety Show as well as IAFP conference.

Dina lives Acworth, Georgia with her husband, Kevin, and daughter, Natalia.

Mandy Sedlak, REHS,  Food Safety and Public Health Manager, Ecolab’s EcoSure

Mandy is the Food Safety and Public Health Manager for Ecolab’s EcoSure business. She provides technical expertise in food safety and is responsible for supporting customers compliance, establishing standards and driving QA progress through health department response, foodborne illness response and food code interpretation.  She also provides education and recommendations to help customers adopt best practices and mitigate risks in their day-to-day operations.

Mandy has 20+ years of experience in Food Safety and QA management as well as Procurement with leading foodservice brands. Mandy is also a member of Food Safety Organizations including National Environmental Health Association (NEHA), International Association of Food Protection (IAFP), CFP (Conference of Food Protection), Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO) and the Minnesota Environmental Health Association (MEHA).  Mandy has a Bachelor of Science degree in nutrition from the University of North Dakota and is a Registered Environmental Health Specialist.

Peter Shearstone, Vice President, Global Quality Assurance and Regulatory Affairs, Thermo Fisher Scientific  

Peter Shearstone joined Thermo Fisher Scientific in 2018 as Vice President, Global Quality Assurance and Regulatory Affairs (QARA), and is responsible for leading the company’s global, corporate QARA team to ensure our products are safe and comply with their intended use. Headquartered in Waltham, Massachusetts, Thermo Fisher is the world leader in serving science; our mission is to enable our customers to make the world healthier, cleaner and safer.

Prior to joining Thermo Fisher, Peter worked in executive-level quality and regulatory roles for 30 years, most recently at Sysmex America, where he served as Vice President, RA/QA/Clinical and Medical Affairs. Prior to that, he held QA leadership roles at Abbott Diagnostics and Siemens Healthcare.

Peter holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Salem State University in Salem, Massachusetts.”

Erin Shirl Parker, J.D., LL.M, Research Director & Staff Attorney, Indigenous Food & Agriculture Initiative 

Erin currently serves as the Research Director of the Indigenous Food & Agriculture Initiative (IFAI) at the University of Arkansas, where she supports the Initiative through program development, research and writing, and analysis of legislative and regulatory issues affecting Tribal governments, businesses, and individual producers. She is also a Produce Safety Alliance (PSA) Lead Trainer on the Produce Safety Rule under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and in that capacity helps to lead IFAI’s grower training series for Indian Country produce growers. Erin is also a current Ph.D. candidate in the Public Policy Program at the University of Arkansas, where she is pursuing a doctoral degree with a focus in agricultural policy. She holds both her J.D. and LL.M. in Agricultural & Food Law from the University of Arkansas School of Law, where she is also a faculty member for the LL.M. program. In her spare time, she enjoys writing, kickboxing, and cooking for her friends and family. 

Murray M. Silver, Jr., Publisher, Bonaventure Books Boutique

Murray M. Silver, Jr. was born in Savannah, GA in 1953. At age 16, he began promoting rock concerts in Atlanta, bringing many future supergroups to the city for the first time, including Fleetwood Mac, Grateful Dead, Allman Brothers, Sonny & Cher, and Paul Simon. Silver parlayed these contacts into a career as a rock tour photographer and journalist, covering the greatest acts of the 1970’s and ’80’s, including George Harrison, Paul McCartney, Elton John, Bob Dylan, Pink Floyd and Peter Gabriel.

In 1982, Silver published his first book, “Great Balls of Fire: The Uncensored Story of Jerry Lee Lewis,” which was adapted to the big screen by Orion in 1989, starring Dennis Quaid, Winona Ryder and Alec Baldwin. Silver is the author of four other books.

In 1988, Silver was introduced to His Holiness the XIVth Dalai Lama by mutual friend Richard Gere and at His Holiness’ request Silver set aside the business of his life to write articles about China’s oppression of Tibet and to sponsor tours of Buddhist monks who performed a program of their sacred chants and dances at colleges and museums throughout the United States. Silver was tour manager from 1989 until 1998.

Returning home to Savannah in 2000, Silver founded Continental Shelf Publishers and Bonaventure Books, with 20 active titles. He ran for Mayor of Savannah in 2015, and will try again this October.

Bonaventure Books Boutique publisher, preserving history one story at a time. Savannah, GA (912) 355. 7054

Nancy Singer, JD, LLM, RAC, FRAP is president of Compliance-Alliance and is an Assistant Professor at George Washington University’s School of Medicine and Health Sciences

Nancy Singer, JD, LLM, RAC, FRAP is president of Compliance-Alliance and is an Assistant Professor at George Washington University’s School of Medicine and Health Sciences. She specializes in the professional development for government and industry professionals. She presently teaches good documentation practices to the investigators and compliance officers in FDA District Offices, and the reviewers in FDA Staff Colleges. Previously she served as Special Counsel for the Advanced Medical Technology Association. For her efforts to improve communication between the government and the regulated industry, Nancy received Vice President Gore’s Reinventing Government Hammer Award and the FDA Commissioner’s Special Citation. She began her career as an attorney with the United States Department of Justice doing litigation for FDA enforcement cases. Subsequently, she was a partner at the law firm of Kleinfeld Kaplan and Becker. Nancy is a retired commander in the Naval Reserve.

Chris Smith, Director, Retail Food Protection Branch III, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Christopher Smith is a Retail Food Branch Director within FDA’s Office of State Cooperative Programs. As Branch Director, he is responsible for managing the FDA Retail Food Protection program within 17 States and 3 territories within the United States.

Chris has been with the Food & Drug Administration since 2010 having previously served as a Retail Food Specialist and National Team Leader.

Prior to joining the FDA, Chris worked in a variety of environmental health and retail food safety positions at both the state and local levels for 13 years in the State of North Carolina.    This included work as a field inspector, regional specialist, and program manager.

Chris has a Bachelor’s degree in Environmental Studies from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, a Master’s in Public Administration from East Carolina University, and graduate certificates in Public Health and Field Epidemiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Chris is a Registered Environmental Health Specialist with both the State of North Carolina and the National Environmental Health Association.

Aurash Jason Soroosh, MSPH, Cannabis Infused Product Safety Analyst, Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission, Maryland Department of Health

Aurash Jason Soroosh currently works at the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission as a Cannabis-Infused Product Safety Analyst. Earlier this year he graduated with a Master of Science in Public Health from the Coordinated Program in Nutrition at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. In 2016 he graduated from the Didactic Program in Dietetics at San Francisco State University. Originally from California, Jason is a formally trained chef who developed a business that grew medical cannabis and produced edible cannabis products from 2010-2015.

Jennifer Tabanico (TAH-BAH-KNEE-COH)President, Action Research

Jennifer Tabanico is President and owner of Action Research, a firm that specializes in changing behavior for the public good by applying marketing and social science research to outreach programs that promote safe, healthy, and sustainable communities. Jennifer has a Master of Arts degree in Experimental Psychology from California State University San Marcos and more than 16 years of experience developing behavior change programs for public and private agencies. Ms. Tabanico has authored or co-authored works in academic and technical outlets including the Journal of Environmental Psychology, Social Influence, the Journal of Applied Social Psychology, Environment and Behavior, and Social Marketing Quarterly. Jennifer also currently serves as an Editorial Board member for Social Marketing Quarterly and as an instructor for the University of California San Diego (UCSD) Extension’s Behavior Change and Sustainability certificate program.

Marilyn Tapia, Program Manager, Riverstone, Health, Montana

Marilyn is the Director of Health Protection at RiverStone Health, a PHAB accredited health department serving Yellowstone County in Montana.  She maintains credentials as both a Registered Dietitian and a Registered Sanitarian, and is certified in Public Health Management and as a Yellow Belt in the Lean Six Sigma system of quality improvement.  Marilyn has been actively engaged in implementing the Retail Program Standards since 2012 and has received more than a half million dollars in grant funds to support that work. Marilyn recognizes the Program Standards as a valuable tool for improvement within the culture of quality at RiverStone Health. 

ROBERT V. TAUXE, M.D., M.P.H., Director, Division of Foodborne, Waterborne and Environmental Diseases, National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Dr. Robert Tauxe is Director of the CDC Division charged with prevention and control of foodborne, waterborne and fungal infections.   The Division monitors the frequency of these infections in the United States, investigates outbreaks, and develops strategies to reduce the disease, disability and deaths that they cause.

Dr. Tauxe graduated from Yale University in 1975, and received his medical degree from Vanderbilt Medical School. He completed an internal medicine residency, trained at CDC in the Epidemic Intelligence Service, and joined CDC staff in 1985.

His interests include bacterial enteric diseases, epidemiology and pathogenesis of infectious diseases, epidemiologic and clinical consequences of bacterial genetic exchange, antimicrobial use and resistance to antimicrobial agents, and teaching epidemiologic methods.  His faculty appointments include the School of Public Health and the Department of Biology at Emory University, Atlanta.

Dr. Tauxe has written/co-authored 294 journal articles, letters and book chapters.

Dan Tew, Sr. Manager of Food Safety & Regulatory Affairs, YUM! Brands

Dan Tew is the Sr. Manger of Food Safety & Regulatory Affairs for Yum! Brands, Inc., the parent company of Taco Bell, KFC, and Pizza Hut. He has responsibility for the west region of the United States which includes 25 states and approximately 11,000 Yum restaurants. His work includes ensuring regulatory compliance within the US, and development and maintenance of Yum’s global restaurant food safety standards and Restaurant Food Safety Audit .

Dan has a BA in Biology from the University of North Carolina and an MBA from Wake Forest University.  He has worked for YUM! Brands for 26 years, the past 11 of which have been in the food safety arena.

Sharon Thompson, DVM, MPH, Associate Professor and Director, Center for Agriculture and Food Security and Preparedness and Co-Director, TN Integrated Food Safety Center of Excellence

Dr. Sharon Thompson is an Associate Professor and the Director of the Center for Agriculture and Food Security and Preparedness (CAFSP) at the University of Tennessee, College of Veterinary Medicine (UTCVM). CAFSP is a nationally recognized Center that conducts training and research related to agriculture and food safety and defense and was founded by Dr. Thompson. Dr. Thompson is also Co-Director of the Tennessee Integrated Food Safety Center of Excellence; one of six national Centers funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dr. Thompson has managed competitive grant projects from a variety of federal agencies including FDA, CDC, DHS, USDA, and the Department of State.


Dr. Thompson has over 28 years of experience in positions of increasing responsibility spanning the federal and academic sector and has extensive experience managing complex, multi-institutional projects. Dr. Thompson joined the University of Tennessee after 12 years working for FDA. At FDA, she was the Associate Director for Veterinary Medical and International Affairs with the Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM). In this capacity, she served as the lead for the development of food safety and drug registration policies, and was responsible for the management of the Center’s international programs. She traveled extensively internationally representing the US at multiple international forums. She served as the Executive Secretary for the Codex Committee on Residues of Veterinary Drugs in Foods and was actively involved in other Codex meetings including the Codex Committee on Food Hygiene and the Codex Commission. She served on several World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) Working Groups and helped found the Veterinary International Cooperation on Harmonization Initiative involving the US, EU, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.

Dr. Thompson has served as an invited expert for the World Health Organization, the World Organization for Animal Health, the Codex Alimentarius, the Pan American Health Association, and several US federal agencies, including the US Department of Agriculture, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the US Department of Homeland Security. Dr. Thompson has several federally funded projects underway and has successfully administered over 24 million in competitively awarded federal grant programs. She has also administered projects for private industry and national associations.

Dr. Thompson received her Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine from the Virginia- Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine, a Masters of Public Health degree from the University of Tennessee, and her bachelor’s degree in biology from Harvard University.

Tammara P. Threats, Director, Compliance, Branch, Division of Southeast Imports, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Mrs. Tammara P. Threats graduated from the University of Memphis in 2001 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology.  She also holds a Graduate Certificate in Human Resource Management from University of Maryland University College, where she is currently pursuing a Master of Science degree in Project Management. She began her career with the Food and Drug Administration in September, 2002 as a Consumer Safety Officer (CSO) for the New Orleans District (NOL-DO), Memphis Resident Post, conducting various import and domestic inspection assignments. She also performed a wide range of Import investigations, working collaboratively with U.S. Customs and Border Protection and U.S. Fish and Wildlife.  In July, 2011 she became a Compliance Officer for New Orleans District whereby she accomplished primarily import compliance case work leading to numerous seizures, liquidated damages and penalty cases. In February, 2016,  Mrs. Threats became the Director of Compliance Branch for New Orleans District Import Operations.  Transitioning to Director of Compliance Branch for the Division of Southeast Imports (DSEI) in May 2017.  In this position, she is responsible for supervision of Compliance Officers and Legal Instruments Examiner; as well as maintaining quality and consistency within DSEI’s Compliance Branch.

Donna Wanucha, Regional Food Specialist, State Cooperative Programs, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Donna Wanucha currently serves as a Retail Food Specialist with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Office of State Cooperative Programs. She is responsible for supporting state, local and tribal retail food programs through their involvement in the Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards and adoption of the FDA Food Code.  Mrs. Wanucha has worked for FDA since 2004, and previously worked at state and local health departments and in food and pharmaceutical industries. She graduated from The Ohio State University with a degree in Microbiology and served honorably in the US Army.

Cameron Wiggins, Retail Food Specialist, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Cameron Wiggins is a retail food specialist with the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Office of State Cooperative Programs (OSCP). On OSCP’s Branch I team, he gets to work with a great group of seasoned Retail Food Specialists and takes great pride in providing technical assistance, partnering, and collaborating with state, local, and tribal retail food regulatory programs in his assigned areas of Alabama, Georgia, Louisiana, and western North Carolina!

Cameron started his career in public health as a local inspector in Champaign, Illinois more 17 years ago. He has continued along that path working at local health departments in Northeast Georgia, the Department of Food Science and Technology at UGA, and most recently the Food Service Program at Georgia Department of Public Health.

Cameron received his B.S. degree in Environmental Science from Alabama A&M University, his MPH degree in Health Policy and Management from the University of Georgia, and is a graduate of the CDC Environmental Public Health Leadership Institute (EPHLI).

Erin Williams, Senior Policy Analyst, Office of Policy, Planning and Research Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Erin Williams has been with the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) for over 10 years.  She has served in a variety of roles, including Dispute Resolution Specialist and Policy and Planning Coordinator for the agency’s Division of Consumer Protection.  She is currently a Senior Policy Analyst in the agency’s Office of Policy, Planning, and Research and serves as the agency’s Regulatory Coordinator.  Ms. Williams has coordinated VDACS’s work to administer the Virginia Industrial Hemp Law since its enactment in 2015.  Additionally, she oversees the agency’s Industrial Hemp Grower, Dealer, and Processor Registration programs.  Ms. Williams earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Mary Washington College in Fredericksburg, Virginia, and a law degree from Quinnipiac University School of Law in Hamden, Connecticut.

Rep. Jack Williams (former), Alabama House District 47

Jack Williams served elected in the Alabama House of Representatives from 2004-2018.   He represented the cities of Hoover and Vestavia in District 47. During his tenure Williams chaired the Children and Senior Services Committee, the Commerce and Small Business Committee, the Contract Review Committee, the Alabama Sports Agents Commission and the Alabama Human Trafficking Task Force.

Prior to being elected to the State House of Representatives, Williams served eight years as Jefferson County Tax Collector.

Early in his political career, Williams worked with former Alabama Republican Party Chairman Marty Connors to found the Southern Republican Exchange, a political think-tank that provided policy ideas to Republicans elected at the state and local level. Immediately prior to becoming Tax Collector, Williams served as the Executive Director of the Alabama House Republican Caucus.  In 2003 Williams served as a trainer for the International Republican Institute’s Haiti Project.  He also served as a delegate to the 2008 Republican National Convention.

Williams has been recognized nationally for his leadership abilities. He served as President for the National Conference of Republican County Officials.  He also served as First-Vice President for the National Association of County Treasurers and Finance Officers. In 2012 he was selected as a Toll Fellow by the Council of State Governments.  In 2014 Williams was recognized as ALEC’s Legislator of the Year.  He also served on the National Advisory Board of GOPAC.

Locally, Williams has chaired several organizations including the Greater Birmingham Habitat for Humanity, the Jefferson County Department of Human Resources Quality Assurance Committee, and the Greater Birmingham Young Republicans.

Williams was recognized as the Public Official of the year in 2006 by the Alabama Habitat for Humanity affiliates.  He was recognized in 2014 as the Local Elected Official of the Year by the Greater Birmingham Young Republicans.

Williams, a graduate of Southeastern Bible College, he has two sons, Regan and Jordan.  Williams is a member of Fullness Christian Fellowship.

Robert C. Williams, Ph.D., Associate Professor, Extension Food Microbiologist, Department of Food Science of Technology, Virginia Tech

Dr. Rob Williams is an associate professor and extension food microbiologist in the Department of Food Science and Technology at Virginia Tech.  His primary extension mission is providing food safety education for the fresh fruit and vegetable production and food processing industries in Virginia. Dr. Williams’ Extension program is focused on improving the microbiological safety and quality of processed food and fresh produce.  He delivers a number of food safety management training programs including HACCP, Food Product Recall, and Good Agricultural Practices each year. Dr. Williams is a lead instructor for Preventive Controls for Human Food.  As a member of the Virginia Specialty Food Advisory Committee (formerly the Virginia Food and Beverage Association), Dr. Williams regularly interacts with Virginia food processors. Dr Williams’ research is focused on the control of pathogenic and spoilage bacteria in fruits and vegetables and ready-to-eat products.  Research efforts include the use of alternative, i.e., non-thermal, processing technologies such as ultraviolet light, ozone and high pressure processing with simultaneous use of several food-grade antimicrobial agents.  He also studies pathogen control in low water-activity foods.  Dr. Williams has taught the undergraduate Food Microbiology course and graduate level Advances in Food Microbiology and Good Agricultural and Manufacturing Practices courses at Virginia Tech. Dr. Williams earned the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Food Science and Technology from the University of Tennessee, and the B.S. degree in Biology, with an emphasis in clinical microbiology, from Tennessee Technological University. His graduate studies focused on the food safety implications of modified atmosphere packaging, the use of ozone for pathogen reduction in fresh fruit juices, and the detection of sublethally-injured bacterial pathogens.

Beth Wittry, Environmental Health Specialist, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

LCDR Beth Wittry works with the Safe Food Section within the CDC National Center for Environmental Health as a subject matter expert. She provides food safety guidance to state and local public health agencies, public health organizations, and industry. In this role, LCDR Wittry manages food safety research projects to understand environmental factors associated with foodborne illness and outbreaks. The information collected from this research is used to develop food safety prevention and intervention recommendations and to inform food safety policies for environmental public health programs and industry. Her previous assignments include: Whiteriver Service Unit Sanitarian (2010-2013) with Indian Health Service and Environmental Health Officer (2013-2017) with CDC’s Vessel Sanitation Program.

Frank Yiannas, Deputy Commissioner, Food Policy and Response, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Frank Yiannas is the Deputy Commissioner for Food Policy and Response at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. He is the principal advisor to the FDA Commissioner on food safety policies, including implementation of the FDA Food Safety Modernization Act.  His leadership role covers a broad spectrum, such as outbreak response, traceback investigations, product recall activities, and supply chain innovation.  Mr. Yiannas came to the FDA from leadership roles with Walmart and the Walt Disney Company. He has long been recognized for his role in elevating food safety standards and building food safety management systems based on science and risk.

Frances (Fran) M. Zipp, President & CEO of Lachman Consultant Services, Inc.

Fran Zipp is President & CEO of Lachman Consultant Services, Inc. As an expert in compliance enhancement, she develops program solutions to meet GXP compliance requirements and delivers strategic guidance and direction toward implementation of effective solutions to client needs. Ms. Zipp has extensive experience in the pharmaceutical, biologic and biotechnology industries from R&D through post-market approval. She assists and counsels Senior-level management in areas of Corporate Governance, Corporate Integrity Agreement Compliance, Consent Decree Negotiations and Resolutions, Application Integrity Policy resolution,
and Due Diligence evaluations (facilities; products; technologies).

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