President nominates acting commissioner to head FDA


ROCKVILLE, Md.-Lester M. Crawford, DVM, acting commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration ( since March 2004, has been nominated by President Bush to serve as the agency's next commissioner.

Dr. Crawford has been an advisor to the United Nations' World Health Organization for much of his career, and has had a significant role in developing mandatory nutrition labeling as well as controls of chemicals and microbiologicals in food. Before assuming his role as interim commissioner, Dr. Crawford served as chair of the Department of Physiology-Pharmacology at the University of Georgia, administrator of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service, and as deputy commissioner for the FDA.

In supporting Dr. Crawford's nomination, Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt said, "Dr. Crawford has dedicated his career to advancing the nation's public health and will lead the way as we enter a new era of individualized medicine and rapidly developing science."

FDA acting commissioner Dr. Lester Crawford is President Bush's choice to head the agency.
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Leavitt added, "With Dr. Crawford's leadership, the FDA will provide the world's safest drugs and empower citizens with the tools they need to make informed choices about their health."

Having received his DVM from Auburn University and a PhD in pharmacology from the University of Georgia, Dr. Crawford is a member of the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine, and a fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine (U.K.) as well as of the International Society of Food Science and Technology. He was inducted into the French Academy of Veterinary Medicine in 1984, and in 1991 received the Wooldridge Award-the British Veterinary Association's highest award.

His nomination now goes to the U.S. Senate for confirmation. III