USDA’s Under Secretary for Food Safety Dr. Elisabeth A. Hagen is slated to discuss food safety initiatives and inspection issues at the National Chicken Council’s upcoming October 4-5 Annual Conference at the Four Seasons Washington. Hagen was sworn in as under secretary for food safety in August 2010, where she oversees the policies and programs of the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).

FSIS is the regulatory agency that ensures that the nation’s commercial meat, poultry, and egg products are safe, wholesome, and correctly labeled and packaged.  She has led key policy development efforts for emerging public health issues as a senior executive in the FSIS Office of Public Health Science, most recently as deputy assistant administrator.  Prior to her appointment as under secretary, she served as USDA’s chief medical officer, advising FSIS and other USDA agencies on a range of human health issues, such as food safety, nutrition, and zoonotic diseases.

Before joining public service, Hagen taught and practiced medicine in both the private and academic sectors.  In addition to several hospital and university appointments, her experience includes research and publication in infectious diseases.  She holds an M.D. from Harvard Medical School.  She completed specialty medical training at the University of Texas Southwestern and the University of Pennsylvania and is board certified in infectious diseases.

Registration is still open for the conference; however, the deadline to make hotel reservations under NCC’s group block was September 12.  NCC’s group rate of $299 at the Four Seasons is no longer available.  On-line registration is available at  Log in with your e-mail address and password before registering.  A list of alternative hotels in the vicinity of the Four Seasons is available on the Web site.  Please contact Maggie Ernst in the NCC office at [email protected],   if you wish to be placed on a wait list for hotel accommodations at the Four Seasons.   NCC  will contact you if another meeting attendee cancels and a room becomes available at the Four Seasons.