President Biden plans to nominate former FDA Commissioner Robert Califf, M.D. to lead the agency once again—in an announcement mainly focused on clinical trials, vaccine approvals, and ending the coronavirus pandemic. Califf briefly served as FDA commissioner in 2016. His tenure was less than a year.
Perhaps more significant news for the food industry is the President’s intent to nominate Jose Emilio Esteban, Ph.D. to the post of undersecretary for food safety at the USDA. Esteban is currently the chief scientist for FSIS and has been in this role since 2018; he has served in the USDA’s FSIS since 2006. Before his time at the agency, he worked for the CDC.
The Senate must confirm both positions.