USA – The U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, Sonny Perdue has appointed Paul Kiecker to serve as Administrator of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS).

Mr. Kiecker will be assuming the role following the departure of Administrator Carmen Rottenberg after a career spanning two decades in the federal service.

Carmen Rottenberg served as Administrator since her appointment in May 2018 but led the agency since August of 2017. As Administrator, Rottenberg spearheaded efforts to modernize the agency and implemented several key initiatives to target foodborne illness.

“It’s been a thrill and absolute joy to work with Secretary Perdue and this USDA team, and I’m so proud of all we have accomplished,” Rottenberg said.

Through her leadership and oversight, Perdue added that an unprecedented level of collaboration was achieved with federal, state and municipal agencies and other stakeholders.

“Ensuring the safety of America’s food supply is USDA’s most important responsibility, and one that Carmen carried out with dedication and vision. I know she will continue her passion for food safety in the private sector,” said Secretary Perdue.

“Carmen is a true public servant and ushered in an era of modernization at the Food Safety and Inspection Service. This mission and drive will continue and advance with Paul Kiecker in his new leadership role.”

Paul Kiecker was appointed as the Deputy Administrator for the FSIS in May 2018 before he was later named as the Agency’s Acting Administrator, a role he held until January 2019.

Kiecker has had been working with FSIS for the past three decades. He joined FSIS in 1988 as a food inspector and later served in a number of roles at the agency, including 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.

Commenting on the leadership changes, Deputy Under Secretary, Mindy Brashears said that looking ahead into 2020, she is confident in the direction of the agency as it has experienced senior staff who are ready to step into new leadership roles.