U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue made two key appointments this week to help fulfill the vital mission of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) 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).
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," Perdue said.
"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 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.”
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,
In those leadership roles, Rottenberg executed a budget of over $1
billion, prioritizing resources and resolving disputes, advancing the
agency’s vision and goals, and leading innovative solutions to
challenges in FSIS.
She spearheaded strategic planning at FSIS and
implemented numerous initiatives to strategically move the agency
forward. Rottenberg implemented two major reorganizations, leading to a
more streamlined, efficient agency better positioned to carry out its
food safety mission.
Through her leadership and oversight, an early
governance process matured into an established systematic approach to
agency decision-making, resulting in more deliberative, science-based
decisions that consider enterprise-wide risks and benefits. Rottenberg
led the very successful i-Impact initiative, which has increased the
awareness of and engagement in FSIS’s public health mission by the more
than 9,000 employees throughout the Agency.
Rottenberg has a bachelor's degree in political science and philosophy from Hope College in Holland, MI and a law
degree from American University’s Washington College of Law.
Kiecker has been with FSIS for 29 years and is 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. He came to
Washington, D.C. to serve as Executive Associate for Regulatory
Operations, after serving as the District Manager in Springdale, AR and
Madison, WI, as well as Deputy District Manager in Madison, WI.
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.
In his various positions with FSIS, Kiecker has played a critical
role in leading external coordination with other federal agencies, state
and local governments, nonprofit and private sector organizations,
international organizations, and law enforcement agencies.
He also has
had oversight responsibility for strategic planning, policy formulation
and implementation, budget development and execution, human resource
management, and day-to-day inspection operations.