President Obama announced Thursday his intent to recess appoint Elisabeth Hagen, M.D., as the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) undersecretary for food safety.
Hagan is currently the USDA's chief medical officer. Previously, she was a senior executive at the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), where she played a key role in developing and executing the agency's scientific and public health agendas.
Before joining the federal government in 2006, Hagen taught and practiced medicine in both the private and academic sectors, most recently in Washington, D.C. She holds a doctor of medicine degree from Harvard Medical School and bachelor's degree from Saint Joseph's University. Hagen completed her specialty medical training at the University of Texas Southwestern and the University of Pennsylvania and is board certified in infectious disease.
"There is no higher priority at USDA than ensuring that Americans have access to a safe and healthy food supply, and Dr. Hagen's background as the chief medical officer and senior executive within USDA's FSIS will enable her to successfully lead the effort to develop and execute the agency's scientific and public-health agenda and continue to build the coordination with public-health partners at federal, state and local level needed to achieve the objectives of President Obama's Food Safety Working Group," stated Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack regarding the appointment.