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Sec. Perdue strengthens USDA food safety team

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U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue has added two strong appointments to the USDA team in an effort to ensure the safety of the nation’s food supply. Perdue announced that Carmen Rottenberg was selected as Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Food Safety and Paul Kiecker was named Acting Administrator for the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS). The two will serve in those capacities until presidential nominees are confirmed by the Senate for those roles.

“Ensuring the safety of our nation’s food supply is our most important responsibility, and it’s one we undertake with great seriousness.  Both Carmen and Paul have dedicated their careers to the mission of food safety and I am pleased to have appointed them to these important roles within the USDA,” said Secretary Perdue. “I commend the work of the entire USDA’s food safety team for painstakingly safeguarding the food we serve our families every single day.”

As Acting Deputy Under Secretary for the USDA’s Office for Food Safety, Rottenberg will oversee development, implementation, and enforcement of all of FSIS regulations, policies, and programs. This appointment follows nearly six years in leadership roles in the FSIS Office of the Administrator, including serving as Chief of Staff, Chief Operating Officer and, most recently, Deputy Administrator.

Throughout his 29 years with FSIS, Kiecker has been committed to a strong public health vision that has guided him to overcome obstacles, identify opportunities for improvement, manage resources efficiently, and achieve food safety objectives to prevent foodborne illness. Since joining FSIS in 1988 as a food inspector, Kiecker has served in a number of roles at the agency, most recently as Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Field Operations.   Kiecker’s experience with FSIS also includes work with the Office of Investigation, Enforcement, and Audit, where he has served as a Compliance Investigator and as Supervisory Compliance Officer.

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