Stop Foodborne Illness announced the new 2019–2020 Dave Theno Food Safety Fellow at the IAFP annual meeting last week. Jamie L. Ragos, a recent graduate of the University of Tennessee, takes the reins from Emily Forauer, the inaugural Theno fellow. Stop Foodborne Illness established the fellowship program in memory of food safety expert David Theno who died in a swimming accident in 2017. Theno’s dedication to keeping people safe extended back to the E. coli O157:H7 outbreak at Jack-in-the-Box in 1993.
The Theno Food Safety Fellowship is a full-time paying job at Stop Foodborne Illness and the fellow also completes a 12-credit online food safety certificate with Michigan State University. Along with housing and benefits, the position gives a young food safety scientist real-world experience with Stop Foodborne Illness’ greater community in learning about the detrimental effects of “failures in food safety”.
“Jaime’s credentials make her a stand-out in any crowd. Her impressive resume illustrates her commitment not only to studying food science but also to sharing that knowledge to create safer, healthier communities,” said Stop Foodborne Illness CEO Mitzi Baum in a press release. “We’re thrilled to have her on board.”
Ragos has worked in research programs at the University of Tennessee’s Department of Nutrition; the Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education, and Communications; the Department of Food Science and Technology; and the Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology. In addition, she has participated on research teams at the Smith International Center in Guatemala and at North Carolina State University in the Department of Food, Bioprocessing, and Nutrition Sciences.