AFDO Conference Speakers – Association of Food and Drug Officials                                                
128th AFDO AEC Conference 2024

2024 Conference Speakers

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Nick Adams

National Association of County and City Health Officials

Rebecca Agnew 

New Mexico Department of Agriculture

Christine Ancrum 

Charlie Arnot 

Look East

Charlie Arnot is a leading expert in food and agriculture, with over 25 years of experience in communications, public relations, and issues management. He is the founder and president of Look East, an employee-owned consulting firm, and the CEO of the Center for Food Integrity, a non-profit organization that builds consumer trust in the food system. Arnot is a respected writer and global speaker, frequently featured in major media outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, and NPR.

Kyle Baker 

Clean Theory

Kyle Baker is the founder and CSO of CLEANTheory. His predominant focus is quality and compliance applications of Title 21 to cannabis.

Kristina Banks

Virginia Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services

Kristina Banks is a Senior Produce Safety Specialist for the Virginia Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services (VDACS) in southwest Virginia. She began her food safety career in 2006 as a Food Inspector with the Virginia Department of Health. She later became an SQF Practitioner at a large produce processing facility before joining the Produce Safety Program in 2019. Banks holds a bachelor’s degree in agriculture from Virginia Tech and helps run her family’s large commercial vegetable operation in southwest Virginia.

Mitzi Baum 

Stop Foodborne Illness

Nicole Baysal 

Minnesota Department of Agriculture

Nicole Baysal is the Produce Safety Program Manager at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. Originally from upstate New York, she holds a bachelor’s degree in biology and an MPH from the University of Minnesota. Baysal has worked for the State of Minnesota for 12 years in various roles, including food inspector, Retail Food Supervisor, and now Program Manager.

Aileen Benavente-Pangelinan 

Commonwealth Health Corporation

Aileen Benavente-Pangelinan is the Program Manager for the Environmental Health & Disease Prevention division at the Commonwealth Healthcare Corporation. Joining as an Environmental Health Specialist in 2017, she was promoted to her current positio in 2018. She supports over 15 programs and oversees the food program, implementing the Retail Program Standards and FDA Food Code.

Heather Birt 

Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Heather Birt has worked for the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) since 2016. As a Recall Specialist, she supports MDARD’s Retail Food, Manufactured Food, Produce, and Dairy Inspection Programs during food-related emergencies, including outbreak and traceback investigations and recalls.

Dr. Tim Boring 

Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Michael Botelho 

Massachusetts Department of Agriculture Resources

Michael Botelho has been with the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources (MDAR) since 2006, holding diverse roles before becoming Director of the Agricultural Food Safety Division.

Jason Brill

Quality Assurance & Food Safety Magazine

Jason Brill, Editor of Quality Assurance & Food Safety magazine, leads editorial content focused on industry regulation, practical applications, and best practices for food safety professionals. With over 13 years in publishing, Brill previously served as Managing Editor of Cleveland Magazine.

Sean Brown 

CeutReg LLC

Veronica Bryant

North Carolina Department of Public Health

Veronica Bryant graduated from Appalachian State University in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry. She started her food safety career as an Environmental Health Specialist in Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. In 2015, she joined the North Carolina Department of Public Health as a Regional Environmental Health Specialist. Currently, she is the Emergency Preparedness and Outbreak Coordinator, providing training and technical assistance on outbreak response, HACCP, and specialized processing. Bryant is an active member of the Conference for Food Protection, International Association of Food Protection, and North Carolina Food Safety and Defense Task Force.

Avis Bulbulyan 

SIVA Enterprises

Avis Bulbulyan is a cannabis policy expert, business strategist, and business turn-around specialist. He is the CEO of SIVA Enterprises, a full-service consulting company focused on the cannabis industry. Bulbulyan has previously served as the President of the LA Cannabis Task Force and was an appointed member of California’s Cannabis Advisory Committee advising the state regulatory agency with development of California’s cannabis regulations. 

Mara Burr

Consumer Brands Association

Mara Burr is the Vice President of Regulatory & Technical Affairs at Consumer Brands Association. She has extensive experience in government, private sector and non-profit sectors, international trade, customs, global health, and regulatory affairs. 

Wendy Campbell

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Wendy Campbell joined the FDA in February 2010 and the Office of Partnerships in 2011. Before FDA, she was the Food Defense Coordinator for the North Carolina Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services and Principal Investigator for the RRT cooperative agreement. She has also been an instructor for the National Center for Biomedical Research and Training and a pharmaceutical laboratory chemist. Campbell holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in food science from North Carolina State University. 

Melissa Card-Abela 

Whole Foods Market

Melissa Card-Abela works as a Senior Principal Counsel on Whole Foods Market’s legal team. She assists with food and drug law matters. Previously, she worked in academia developing and teaching food law courses, writing and publishing for academic journals, and presenting on food law issues nationally and internationally. 

Courtney Carignan 

Michigan State University

Dr. Courtney Carignan is an exposure scientist and epidemiologist focusing on contaminants in food, water, and consumer products and their effects on reproductive and child health. With 20 years of experience, her recent work centers on PFAS exposure and health effects. She is an Assistant Professor at Michigan State University, with appointments in Food Science and Human Nutrition and Pharmacology and Toxicology. Carignan completed postdoctoral training at Harvard and Dartmouth and holds a doctorate in environmental health from Boston University and a bachelor’s in biological sciences from Rutgers. 

Kim Carlton

Minnesota Department of Agriculture

Kim Carlton is the manager of the Retail Food Program at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. She has previously supervised the Partnership and Workforce Development Unit at the Minnesota Department of Health and worked as a retail food inspector in Minneapolis and Saint Paul. Carlton holds an MPH from the University of Minnesota and a bachelor’s from Gustavus Adolphus College. She is the Region 4 Vice President of the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA).  

Joe Castle

SAS Institute Inc

Dr. Joe Castle advises SAS and public sector executives on data analytics, AI, and open source software. He has over 20 years of experience in the U.S. federal government, including roles at the U.S. General Services Administration, The White House, and the U.S. Army’s 10th Mountain Division. He supports veterans’ organizations and holds an MBA, an MS in information systems, and a PhD in public administration and public affairs.

Dr. Benjamin Chapman  

North Carolina State University

Dr. Ben Chapman is department head of the department of Agricultural and Human Sciences, professor, and director of the Safe Plates food safety Extension and research program at North Carolina State University. He is the Co-Chair of the STOP Foodborne Illness board of directors, an advocacy group for individuals affected by foodborne pathogens. Chapman also co-hosts two podcasts, Food Safety Talk and Risky or Not. 

Han Chen  

Purdue University

Han Chen is a Ph.D. candidate in the Food Science Department at Purdue University, specializing in food safety culture and management. Her research focuses on assessing the needs, values, and challenges of food handlers, and she is interested in understanding how culture and organizational dynamics affect food safety performance. Chen’s goals are to develop user-centered strategies to enhance food safety performance and culture within the food industry. 

Dr. Conrad Choiniere   

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Dr. Conrad Choiniere leads scientific and regulatory functions in food safety, dietary supplements, risk assessment, outbreak response, food defense, and compliance at the FDA. He chairs the Toxic Elements Working Group, aiming to reduce heavy metal exposure in foods. Choiniere holds a doctorate in agricultural and resource economics from the University of Maryland and a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from Johns Hopkins University.

Sarah Avery Cope   

North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Sarah Cope serves as the Outreach Coordinator for the Produce Safety Program at the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. She identifies and educates produce farms in North Carolina about the Produce Safety Rule. As a Produce Safety Alliance Lead Trainer, she conducts On-Farm Readiness Reviews, farm visits, workshops, and presentations at produce commodity events. Cope, with four and a half years of experience in the program, holds a master’s degree in agricultural and Extension education from North Carolina State University. 

Deanna Copeland    

Association of Food and Drug Officials

Joseph Corby

New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets

Joseph Corby dedicated 38 years to the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, starting as a Food Inspector in 1970 and retiring as the Director of the Division of Food Safety and Inspection in 2008. He then served as Executive Director of the Association of Food & Drug Officials (AFDO) for a decade and now works as a Senior Advisor for the association. Corby is an experienced instructor for FDA, AFDO, IFPTI, Louisiana State University, NEHA, and the University of Tennessee. He is an outspoken advocate for a nationally integrated food safety system and collaborates with various groups and associations in support of this cause. 

Terry Councell    

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Patrick Cournoyer     

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Patrick Cournoyer is a senior science advisor leading the FDA’s Cannabis Product Committee, overseeing the agency’s cannabis-related activities. Previously, he was a regulatory scientist in the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN), specializing in the regulation of cannabis-derived substances as food ingredients and evaluating food safety of new plant varieties. Cournoyer joined the FDA in 2013 after completing his doctorate at Yale University, focusing on plant immune system biology. 

Cynthia Culmo     

Culmo Compliance Consulting

Cynthia Culmo is a licensed pharmacist with over 30 years of experience in global regulatory enforcement, quality compliance, and leadership in medical products including devices, biologics, and pharmaceuticals. She has expertise in FDA and global agency inspections, quality system remediation, and addressing regulatory letters. Culmo also has extensive experience with US Pharmacopeia, serving on governance committees and expert subcommittees for over 30 years as AFDO’s delegate. 

Katherine Del Mundo     

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Katherine Del Mundo is a Retail Food Specialist for FDA’s National Retail Food Team based in Denver, Colorado. She supports regulatory agencies in Arizona, California, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and tribal regions. Del Mundo co-chairs FDA’s Program Standards Workgroup and utilizes her Retail Program Standards expertise to guide the group. Prior to joining FDA, she was an Environmental Public Health Officer for the Guam Department of Public Health and Social Services, where she managed the Food Safety Program from 2011 to 2020. 

Michele DiMaggio      

Contra Costa Health

Michele R. DiMaggio is a California Registered Environmental Health Specialist and Consumer Protection Program Supervisor at Contra Costa Health. She is also a member of the Contra Costa Health Outbreak Management and Program Preparedness (CCHOMPP) Team. DiMaggio serves as NEHA Region 2 Vice President, Epi-Ready Instructor, and participates in various workgroups including AFDO Healthy People 2030 Norovirus, Partnership for Food Protection (PFP), and the Conference for Food Protection.

Colette Dziadul    

Lauren Edwards     

Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Tara Edwards     

Regulatory Support Office

Tara Edwards has 11 years of experience with the Southern Nevada Health District (SNHD). In her current position as a Senior Environmental Health Specialist (EHS) in the Regulatory Support Office (RSO), she reviews hazard analysis critical control point (HACCP) plans and waivers (variances). In addition, she often accompanies and advises other EHS’s on inspections of facilities and in conducting special processes. As a part of RSO, Edwards routinely trains new EHS’s in inspection procedures for food establishments and, as an SNHD Standard, she is also responsible for standardizing experienced food inspectors. Besides her work at SNHD, Edwards has been a NEHA contracted instructor for FD312, Special Processes at Retail, since 2019.  Before then, she was a research microbiologist at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV). Edwards earned her master’s degree in microbiology in 2013 and two bachelor’s degrees (biology and biochemistry) in 2010 from the UNLV. 

Jay Ellingson     

Kwik Trip Inc.

Dr. Jay L.E. Ellingson is the Chief Science Officer for Kwik Trip, Inc. He is responsible for all aspects of food protection. Ellingson previously served as the Director of Marshfield Clinic Laboratories – Food Safety Services, in Marshfield, Wisconsin, where he developed and patented molecular diagnostic methods for detection of E. coli 0157:H7 and Salmonella. From 1997 to 1999, he was a staff molecular microbiologist with the USDA, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, Center for Veterinary Biologics. Ellingson is an adjunct professor in the microbiology department of the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse. He’s been a member of multiple state and federal food protection and food safety boards and associations and has also authored numerous scientific publications. His doctorate in molecular microbiology is from Marquette University; Ellingson’s fellowship training was with the USDA, Agriculture Research Service, National Animal Disease Center in Ames, Iowa. 

Lezli Engelking     

Foundation of Cannabis Unified Standards

Lezli Engelking, a public health advocate with 15 years of experience in the cannabis industry, identified the importance of quality standards due to her experience in the pharmaceutical and mental health industries. After observing shortcomings in state regulations following Arizona’s legalization of medical cannabis in 2010, she founded FOCUS, a non-profit organization dedicated to cannabis health and safety. FOCUS serves as a Cannabis Regulatory Partner of AFDO.

David Engelskirchen      

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

David Engelskirchen is the FDA Retail Food Specialist for Washington, Nevada, and three U.S. Pacific Island Territories (American Samoa, the Northern Mariana Islands, and Guam). Before joining the FDA in 2014, he served over 36 years in the U.S. Army Veterinary Service, retiring as Chief Warrant Officer Five. Engelskirchen holds bachelor’s degrees in vocational education from Southern Illinois University and in food science from the University of Wisconsin, along with a master’s degree in education from Central Michigan University. He is a NEHA Certified Professional-Food Safety, stationed at the Tacoma, Washington, Resident post. 

Amber English     

Northern Nevada Public Health

Amber English has over 20 years of experience at Northern Nevada Public Health. She currently oversees the food safety program, which includes inspections, education, and enforcement of food establishment regulations; plan review; foodborne disease; and the Retail Program Standards. 

Dr. José Emilio Esteban      

U.S. Department of Agriculture

Dr. José Emilio Esteban was sworn in as Under Secretary for Food Safety on January 4, 2023. In this role, Esteban leads the Office of Food Safety at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), overseeing the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), which has regulatory oversight for ensuring that meat, poultry, and egg products are safe, wholesome, and properly labeled. 

Jason Evans     

Johnson & Wales University

Jason Evans is the Dean of the College of Food Innovation and Technology (CFIT) at Johnson & Wales University. Previously, he was an Associate Professor of Agricultural Business Management at SUNY Cobleskill, where he also directed the Institute for Rural Vitality and chaired the Department of Agriculture & Food Management. Evans earned his doctorate in Natural Resource Economics from West Virginia University and served as an Assistant Research Professor there before joining SUNY Cobleskill in 2009. 

Brian Everett      

Tattoo Industry Consultant

Sue Fangmann      

McDonald’s Corporation

Laurie Farmer    

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Betty Feng    

Purdue University

Betty Feng is an Associate Professor and Extension Specialist at Purdue University. She focuses on reducing foodborne illness and enhancing food safety through effective risk assessment and communication. Feng’s research explores cultural, social, and environmental factors affecting food safety behaviors, aiming to identify barriers and evaluate empowering strategies for stakeholders to make science-based decisions. 

Ruth Fisher     


Ruth Fisher, PhD, is a systems design researcher, modeler, and analyst. She studies markets to determine how environments shape outcomes. Fisher excels at understanding complex systems and explaining and quantifying the value they provide to different participants. Most recently, she has been involved in the cannabis industry, helping design methods to increase awareness and education and improve outcomes for medical consumers.

Jacob Fleig     

Association of Food and Drug Officials

Prior to joining AFDO in January 2023 as the SAFHER Implementation Manager, Fleig worked for the Missouri Department of Agriculture as the Program Manager for the Bureau of Feed and Seed until retiring after 13 years with the department. He was part of the inaugural class of the Missouri Leadership Academy. Fleig is a Prosci Certified Change Practitioner and is Lean Green Belt certified by the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth. 

Sally Flowers    

Association of Food and Drug Officials

Sally Flowers brings over 20 years of experience in government, industry, and academic labs, specializing in food safety and livestock vaccine quality control. She managed both commercial and state agricultural labs, supervising diverse testing areas such as food, dairy, meat, feed, fertilizer, pesticide, industrial hemp, and metrology. Flowers holds a Bachelor’s degree in animal science from the University of Florida, a Master’s degree in animal science from Penn State, a Doctorate in food science from Penn State, and a Bachelor’s degree in clinical laboratory science from the University of Nebraska. 

Shay Frankenfield      

South Carolina Department of Agriculture

Shay Frankenfield serves as the Produce Safety Compliance Officer for the South Carolina Department of Agriculture, where she oversees the compliance and enforcement pieces of the regulatory side of FSMA’s Produce Safety Rule. She coordinates all enforcement actions and follow-ups for produce farm inspections in the state. Frankenfield also serves as a member of South Carolina’s Rapid Response Team as well as the Emergency Management Division. 

Kim Galloup     

Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Kim Galloup is the Produce Safety Unit Manager for the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD). She started with MDARD in 2016. Prior to stepping into the PSU Manager role, Galloup was a retail and manufacturing food inspector and produce safety inspector with MDARD.

Cameron Garrison      

HS Govtech/Healthspace USA

Cameron is a thought leader in SaaS for environmental health. He founded the first national cloud-based EH platform in 1999 and iGov Technologies in 2011 (acquired by HealthSpace in 2014). Over 23 years, Cameron has led over 1,000 health department deployments, focusing on emergency preparedness and response. Post-9/11, he helped state and county health departments with emergency response plans. In 2020, he advised 100+ health departments during the COVID-19 pandemic. Cameron joined HealthSpace full-time in 2019, overseeing client delivery operations.  

Amanda Garvin     

Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Amanda Garvin is the Local Health Services Manager at the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. She coordinates with 45 local health departments in Michigan, overseeing accreditations, standardizations, consultations, and trainings. Garvin holds an MPH from the University of Toledo and Bowling Green State University, as well as a bachelor’s degree in medical laboratory science from Bowling Green State University. With experience as an epidemiologist, medical laboratory scientist, and food safety specialist, she is a Registered Environmental Health Sanitarian and a registered Medical Laboratory Scientist. 

Paula Givens     

Industry Assurance & Oversight, LLC

Frank Greene     

Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection

Frank Greene is Director, Division of Food, Standards and Product Safety, for the Connecticut Department of Consumer Protection. His division oversees grocery stores, food manufacturers, food warehouses, weights and measures, and product safety for children and consumer goods. Greene has been the director for 20 years; before that he worked for the Connecticut Department of Public Health. The NEFDOA regional board member, MFRP Alliance past president, and NEFDOA past president is also a member of IAFP. Greene has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Connecticut and an MPH from Southern Connecticut State University.

Dr. Eduardo Gutierrez-Rodriguez      

Colorado State University

Dr. Gutierrez-Rodriguez has over two decades of expertise in research, Extension, and business in food safety systems, particularly focusing on fresh produce and minimally processed foods. His research centers on understanding human pathogen microbial ecology in farm and food processing settings. He collaborates extensively with the food industry in Latin America and the United States, supporting training related to the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA). Gutierrez-Rodriguez guides research and development and quality assurance departments in the United States and Costa Rica, emphasizing the interconnectedness of human health with food and agricultural ecosystems. 

Karen Hall    

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Karen Hall is a regulatory review scientist in the Regulatory Review Branch, Division of Food Ingredients, Office of Food Additive Safety, Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, US FDA. She holds a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Clemson University and a master’s degree in computer resources and information management from Webster University. Hall’s current work involves evaluating food ingredients’ regulatory compliance, including reviewing food additive petitions and GRAS program notices. 

Alex Hearding      

FOCUS Risk Management

Alex Hearding is a cannabis enthusiast and advocate. His educational and professional background is in science, engineering, and occupational safety. After Colorado’s “Green Rush” in 2009, Hearding became a licensed caregiver growing the plant for patients and working with medical dispensaries. In 2014, he and a partner received one of the first recreational cultivation licenses in Colorado. His involvement with starting multiple cannabis operations includes writing license applications, designing and building facilities, doing operations management, compliance auditing, inventory management, and consulting. After witnessing improperly controlled hazards in the cannabis workplace due to a lack of standards, Hearding started to help the industry with occupational safety; this led him to product safety and risk management. Since 2017, Greene has dedicated his career to improving organizational health and managing risks of cannabis businesses with a mission of lowering the human and financial cost of operations.

Mott Heath     

OCI Headquarters

Mott Heath began his federal career in 1990 as an Investigator for the Office of Personnel Management. He later became a Special Agent for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, Office of Inspector General, in West Palm Beach, Florida. In 2007, Heath joined FDA OCI as a Special Agent in the Miami Field Office, eventually becoming Assistant Special Agent in Charge in 2011. He currently serves as a Senior Operations Manager at OCI Headquarters, working with the Center for Devices and Radiological Health and CFSAN. 

Mikaylah Heffernan      

Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Mikaylah Heffernan currently works as the legislative liaison for the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. She previously worked as a House Democratic Policy Advisor for the Michigan House of Representatives, focusing on agriculture and natural resources. Heffernan holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and a master’s degree in public policy from Michigan State University. 

Jorge A. Hernandez      

Wendy’s Company

Jorge Hernandez is the Vice President of Quality Assurance for the Wendy’s Company. As such, he is responsible for the design, implementation, and leadership of the food safety, quality assurance, and regulatory compliance programs that impact suppliers, distribution centers, and 7,250 restaurants in 33 countries.

Rachael Herndon      

Emily Hollingsworth      

Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Emily Hollingsworth is the Retail Food Program Manager at the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. With experience as an aquatic biologist, sanitarian, and food inspector, she leads efforts to ensure a safe food supply and supports Michigan’s agricultural industry. Hollingsworth resides in Montague, Michigan, with her husband and daughter, enjoying the beauty of Michigan’s west coast.

Niki Holm     


Niki Holm is a Risk Control Advisor for IMA. She provides risk control consultation to manufacturing, real estate, and cannabis organizations. Her bachelor’s degree in occupational safety and health is from Columbia Southern University, and she is a Certified Safety Professional (CSP). Holm has a diverse background with over 15 years of safety experience in the construction, energy, and agriculture industries. 

Catherine Hosman      

Association of Food and Drug Officials

Cathy Hosman manages the Milk/Shellfish sub awarding Program, including the award and management of training and equipment grants to states in support of the Grade “A” Milk Program and the National Shellfish Sanitation Program, under the guidance of FDA, NCIMS and ISSC. She also facilitates training for AFDO, serves as a subject matter expert for cooperative agreement-related issues, and assists with project management and process improvement projects.

Betty Howard      


Dr. Dale Hunt     

Hunt IP Law/Breeders Best

Dr. Dale Hunt, Ph.D., JD, is a plant scientist and patent attorney who has worked with cannabis breeders and companies for 10 years. He has degrees in botany, genetics, molecular/cellular biology, and law. Hunt is an advocate for plant medicine and its beneficial uses. 

Adam Inman   

Kansas Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Lodging Program

Adam Inman is the Assistant Program Manager for the Kansas Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Lodging Program. He has served in numerous roles in national food safety organizations. Inman was an IFPTI Fellow in Cohort III. His bachelor’s degree in biology is from Kansas State University. Inman enjoys spending time with his extraordinary wife and three amazing daughters and also enjoys playing his guitar collection and writing/performing food safety songs.

Kellie Isaac      

Association of Food and Drug Officials

Maria Ishida      

New York Department of Agriculture and Markets

Jodi Jackson      

Jefferson County Public Health

Jodi Jackson has 14 years of experience in environmental health, with a strong passion for body art and food safety. She continually seeks opportunities for learning and professional growth. Jodi is a dedicated mother to two sons. She aspires to travel extensively and explore various countries around the world.

Shawna Johnson      

Boulder County Public Health

With 12 years of food safety experience, Shawna Johnson is the Food Safety Lead at Boulder County Public Health in Colorado. Her background in agriculture, veterinary medicine research, and an MPH from CU School of Public Health provides a strong foundation in public health principles. Johnson’s dedication to professional development is evident through her participation in leadership opportunities and recognition as an IFPTI Fellow. 

James Jones     

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Jim Jones became the FDA’s first Deputy Commissioner for Human Foods in September 2023. Before joining the FDA, he served as a federal regulator of pesticides, toxic substances, chemical safety, and pollution prevention at the EPA. Jones also worked for the Household and Commercial Products Association from 2017 to 2020 and later ran his own company advising clients on chemical safety and sustainability issues. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economics from the University of Maryland and a master’s degree in economics from the University of California, Santa Barbara. 

Dr. Craig Kaml      


Dr. Craig Kaml is the architect of the IFPTI competency-based curriculum development process, forming the foundation for the IFSS National Curriculum Standard and curriculum frameworks in collaboration with APHL, AFDO, AAFCO, and CFIA. At IFPTI, he manages curriculum design, development, review, instructional design, instructor development, course delivery, assessment, evaluation, and ANSI and IACET standards. Kaml’s expertise lies in adult learning theory, instructional design, technology, higher and distance education leadership, and delivery. He currently leads the cooperative agreement with FDA to develop the IFSS curriculum framework and is a Co-PI on the Cooperative Agreement establishing IFPTI as the National Coordination Center. 

Kelly E. Kline      

Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture

Kelly Kline is the Rapid Response Team Program Specialist at the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture. Prior to this role, she was an epidemiologist at the Pennsylvania Department of Health for seven years. Kline holds an MPH in the epidemiology of microbial diseases from the Yale School of Public Health. 

Maria Knirk     

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Jason S. Kong      

Ohio Department of Agriculture

Glenda Lewis     

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Glenda Lewis has been in the FDA Retail Program since December 1996 and currently serves as Director of the Retail Food Protection Staff in FDA’s CFSAN.  In this capacity, she leads the division in the development of national retail food policy such as the FDA Food Code and policy for the Interstate Travel Program.  Lewis has a bachelor’s degree in biology from Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia, and a master’s degree in public health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  

Dr. Adam London    

Kent County Health Department

Dr. Adam London serves as Health Officer at the Kent County Health Department in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He is also a registered sanitarian, a diplomate of the American Academy of Sanitarians, and a past president of the National Environmental Health Association. 

Kyle MacIsaac     

Canada’s Consumer and Hazardous Products Safety Directorate

Kyle MacIsaac joined Health Canada’s Consumer and Hazardous Products Safety Directorate (CHPSD) in 2019 and is currently a Compliance and Enforcement Officer in the Compliance and Enforcement Division of CHPSD where he works predominantly on the cosmetics file. Prior to that, he worked as a Regulatory Policy and Risk Management Officer in the Cosmetics Unit in the Risk Management Strategies Division at CHPSD. MacIsaac has bachelor’s degrees in biochemistry and chemical engineering from the University of Ottawa. 

Steven Mandernach      

Association of Food and Drug Officials

Steven Mandernach (MAWN-dur-knock) is the executive director of the Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO). Previously, he served as the bureau chief for food and consumer safety at the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals. Mandernach is a past president of AFDO and has chaired the Manufactured Food Regulatory Program Alliance. He has co-authored numerous articles on retail food safety, foodborne illness detection, and the integrated food safety system, contributing to publications like Food Safety Magazine, New Food Magazine, Quality Assurance, and Food Safety Magazine. Mandernach holds a J.D. from Drake University Law School and has completed graduate work in Food Safety at Michigan State University. 

Ben Marshall     

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Ben Marshall is a seventh-generation farm boy from central Missouri. He found his way into produce safety in 2019, working for the Missouri Department of Agriculture, and has gone to work every day since then educating anyone who would listen on the Produce Safety Rule. Marshall says he was blessed with an opportunity to move to FDA in 2022, where he works alongside farmers, state partners, and internal and external stakeholders. 

Bill Martin       


Katherine Martinez      

Kent County Health Department

Amber Matulis     

Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Amber Matulis is the Director of the Dairy, Feed, and Produce Division at the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. Before assuming this role in 2024, she held positions including Dairy Inspector, Emerging Issues Specialist, and Produce Safety Unit Manager at MDARD. Matulis earned a master’s degree in public health from Michigan State University and a bachelor’s degree in biology and psychology from Hope College. Outside of work, she shares her life with husband Joe, a Husky, two cats, and three children. They enjoy camper van adventures together. 

Sharon Mayl      

DLA Piper

Raquel Maymir      

General Mills

Raquel Maymir has over 22 years of experience in regulatory, quality, and food safety in the consumer packaged goods industry. She currently leads Global Regulatory Operations and Compliance at General Mills, ensuring adherence to US FDA, USDA, and CFIA regulations. Maymir has also held leadership roles in product and ingredient management. She has an MBA and a bachelor’s degree in industrial and systems engineering.

Terri McConnell     

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Terri McConnell has 26 years of experience working in the human and animal food safety program within the FDA Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA) both in the laboratory and as a CSO/state liaison. She currently works within the ORA Office of Regulatory Science leading the external laboratory staff providing analytical/technical support and coordination for the Laboratory Flexible Funding Model (LFFM) as well as the Food Emergency Response Network (FERN). 

Jennifer McEntire     

Food Safety Strategy, LLC

Jennifer McEntire is the founder of Food Safety Strategy, LLC. With over 20 years of food and beverage association experience, she combines her technical background and regulatory insights to help the food industry assess and manage food safety risks in order to protect public health. McEntire earned a bachelor’s degree in food science from the University of Delaware and a doctorate from Rutgers University as a USDA National Needs Fellow in food safety.  

Dray McFarlane      


Having nearly two decades of experience in providing associations and non-profits with business and technology services, Dray McFarlane has always been inspired by the people he works with and their passion-driven support of each organization’s mission. At Tasio, he combines the deep understanding he gained of these organizations with his expertise in technology to drive solutions leveraging the latest in artificial intelligence. 

Ted McKinney     

National Association of State Departments of Agriculture

Ted McKinney is the Chief Executive Officer of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA), a position he assumed in September 2021. NASDA represents state commissioners, secretaries, and directors of agriculture to the United States and the world. Previously, McKinney served as the first U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs from 2017-2021. In that role, he led the development and implementation of USDA’s trade policy, facilitated foreign market access, and promoted opportunities for U.S. agriculture through trade programs and negotiations. McKinney also oversaw the U.S. Codex Alimentarius staff and functions. 

Tom McMahan      


Selina Medina     

Alliance of Professional Tattooists

Joan Menke-Schaenzer     

Van Drunen Farms and FutureCeuticals

Joan Menke-Schaenzer, Chief Quality Officer at Van Drunen Farms and FutureCeuticals, oversees quality and food safety for their global fruit, culinary herb, and nutraceutical businesses. Previously, she led safety and compliance at McDonald’s, food safety and quality at ConAgra Foods, global food safety and security at Wal-Mart, and quality at Kraft Foods. Menke-Schaenzer is a strong advocate for Food Safety Culture and collaborates with stakeholders including NGOs, public health, and regulatory agencies. She has served on the FDA Food Advisory Committee and CDC Board of Scientific Counselors FSMA Implementation working group. 

Pam Miles      

Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Pam Miles has worked for the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services for 35 years, starting as a Food Safety Specialist and progressing to her current role as Office of Dairy and Foods Program Manager. This office oversees Food Safety, Dairy Services, and Produce Safety Programs. She previously worked in quality control for Kraft Foods and a Grade A milk plant. Miles holds a bachelor’s degree in food science from Purdue University and has served as president of the Association of Food and Drug Officials, where she is currently a board member.

John Misock      

CeutiReg, Inc.

Brian Mitchell    

Square Roots

Brian Mitchell is the Director of Farm Operations at Square Roots, endeavoring to grow the brightest ideas with indoor farming. He lives in St. Paul, Minnesota. 

Dru Montri      

Feeding America

Dru Montri is the Vice President of Agri Food Engagement at Feeding America. She leads a team collaborating with network members and partners to boost the supply of agricultural products, such as produce, protein, and dairy, for those facing hunger. With nearly two decades of experience in food and agriculture, Montri previously served as the Director of Government and Stakeholder Relations for Michigan State University’s College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. 

Kenya Moon     

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Kenya Moon is a Retail Food Specialist for the U.S. Food & Drug Administration and is based out of Falls Church, Virginia. She is a passionate speaker, trainer, and mentor, and truly enjoys working with and providing food safety and defense support to state, local, and tribal regulators in the states of Maryland, Virginia, and the District of Columbia.

As a member of FDA’s National Retail Food Team, Moon promotes uniform adoption of laws, helps in developing national retail food safety strategies, and instructs on a wide range of food safety topics. A unique and large part of her career with FDA has been her involvement with National Special Security Events, such as the Presidential Inauguration.

Eric Moore      

Testo Solutions

With over 20 years of food safety expertise in leading foodservice and retail organizations, Eric Moore spearheads Testo Solutions food safety initiatives. Leveraging his proven track record, Moore translates his industry knowledge and experience into strategic leadership, guiding Testo’s efforts to elevate technology driven food safety management systems and software worldwide. 

Brenda Morris      

Association of Food and Drug Officials

Cori Muse      

Muse Food Safety Solutions, LLC

Cori Muse is the owner and principal Strategic Advisor for Muse Food Safety Solutions, LLC., a consulting firm specializing in food safety, quality, and regulatory services. Serving industries such as food and beverage, cannabis, food importers, and packaging, MFSS helps clients achieve regulatory compliance and implement effective food safety management systems. With over 15 years of experience, Muse has worked with Fortune 100 companies like PepsiCo and smaller businesses. She is also a qualified auditor for GFSI and supplier quality schemes and recognized by the International HACCP Alliance as a Lead HACCP Instructor.

Brandon Nader      

Michigan Department of Agriculture

Brandon Nader has a degree in cellular and molecular biology from Grand Valley State University. He has worked for the Michigan Department of Agriculture for 10 years, formerly as the Quality Assurance Manager and currently as the Microbiology Section Manager. 

Monica Noble    

80 Acres Farms

Monica Noble, Director of Quality and Safety at 80 Acres Farms, boasts over a decade of experience in the produce industry, specializing in quality, food safety, and regulatory compliance. She holds a chemical engineering degree with a focus on the food industry from Tec de Monterrey and a master’s degree in food safety regulations from Johns Hopkins University. Additionally, Noble serves on the board of the CEA Alliance and is a member of the technical committee at the Center for Produce Safety and the Food Safety Council at the International Fresh Produce Association.

Cynthia Northcutt    

Dr. Shaun Opie     

E4 Bioscience

Dr. Shaun Opie is an entrepreneurial scientist with over 30 years of combined experience in cannabis safety and compliance testing, clinical trial management, and cell and gene therapies. He is the editor and contributing author of the textbook, Cannabis Laboratory Fundamentals.  

Maggie Pandis      

Conagra Brands

Maggie Pandis is a Senior Regulatory Affairs Specialist at Conagra Brands. She earned an ACS Certified bachelor’s degree in chemistry and a minor in biology from the University of Nebraska at Omaha, a bachelor’s degree in finance from Creighton University, and a master’s degree in food science and technology with a focus on Allergen Risk Management from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. She has worked at Conagra Brands for 12 years, and her work currently focuses on chemical management and toxicology. 

Chip Paul    

Gnu Pharma

Chip Paul is a world expert on the theory of the endocannabinoid system. He is also an activist and was instrumental in the passage of the medical cannabis law in Oklahoma. Paul advises and consults national leaders, regulators, and pharmaceutical stakeholders on cannabis regulations and nuance.

Debbie Pickle     

Association of Food and Drug Officials

Carrie Pohjola      

Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection

Carrie Pohjola is an Advanced Food Scientist at the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection. Her responsibilities include retail food trainings, program evaluations, and FDA standardization. Pohjola chairs the Program Standards Committee at the Conference for Food Protection and served as President of the Wisconsin Environmental Health Association in 2023. She is passionate about food safety and considers herself a food safety geek.

Valerie A. Potopsingh      

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Valerie Potopsingh joined the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in 2008. Since 2018, she has been a Retail Food Specialist in the Office of State Cooperative Programs, working with food safety partners in Florida, New Hampshire, and New Jersey. Potopsingh has also served as a Shellfish Specialist and Food Specialist, conducting inspections of domestic and foreign food manufacturers. Before joining the FDA, she was a Public Health Sanitarian at the Suffolk County Department of Health Services in New York, focusing on retail food inspections.

Kirby Quam      

Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Kirby Quam has been the Produce Safety Outreach Coordinator at FDACS since 2020, where he collaborates with fresh fruit and vegetable producers statewide to enhance produce quality and safety. Prior to joining FDACS, he worked in agriculture equipment manufacturing and sales, served as an agriculture Extension specialist with the Peace Corps in Senegal, West Africa, and taught elementary school. Outside of work, Quam enjoys spending time with his family at home in Lake Wales, Florida. 

Joe Reardon      

National Association of State Departments of Agriculture

Carrie Rigdon      

Association of Food and Drug Officials

Brendan Ring      

Creme Global

Brendan Ring is the Commercial Director in Creme Global, a data science and predictive modeling company. He has worked with a wide range of companies in the food, cosmetics, and ICT space over the last two decades. Ring is experienced in engaging with C-level management and technical teams to scope complex requirements and deliver solutions to meet client needs. He has completed an engineering degree and an Executive MBA at the University of Cambridge, UK. 

Michael Rogers     

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Michael Rogers is the Associate Commissioner for Regulatory Affairs (ACRA) at the FDA’s Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA), overseeing inspections, compliance, enforcement, field laboratory operations, import operations, and strategic planning across all FDA regulatory programs. With a wealth of experience, Rogers has led national and international investigations, responded to public health emergencies, and contributed to natural disaster recovery efforts. He holds a bachelor’s degree in zoology and chemistry from North Carolina State University, and a master’s degree in management from the University of Maryland University College. 

Sonia Salas     

Western Growers Association

Sonia Salas is the Associate VP of Science at Western Growers (WG) Association, specializing in enhancing the safety of fresh produce. With extensive experience spanning over 20 years, she has worked both domestically and overseas with flower farmers, milk producers, cheese manufacturing, and grain packing facilities. Salas holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agricultural sciences, focusing on food science, food safety, and food marketing. 

Jef Saunders      

Jef Saunders is a former Association of Professional Piercers President, and contributing author of The Piercing Bible. He teaches piercing technique and safety around the world. 

Britanny Saunier      

Food Safety Education

Britanny Saunier is the executive director of the Partnership for Food Safety Education, a nonprofit that brings food industry, consumer groups, and the federal agencies together to advance consumer food safety education. She has worked in consumer food safety for over 10 years, focusing on reducing illnesses through amplifying safe food handling guidance. Saunier has a master’s degree in public administration from the School of Public Affairs at the American University in Washington, D.C. 

Michael Schaffer       

Dr. Don Schaffner      

Rutgers University

Dr. Don Schaffner is Extension Specialist in Food Science and Distinguished Professor at Rutgers University. He is the current Chair of the Rutgers Department of Food Science. Schaffner was the president of the International Association for Food Protection in 2013-2014. He co-hosts the Food Safety Talk and Risky or Not podcasts. 

Mandy Sedlack     


Mandy Sedlak is a Director of Gobal Food Safety and Public Health at Ecolab. She provides insights on regulatory and industry trends and is responsible for helping customers mitigate risks in the areas of food safety, guest experience, public health, workplace safety, and sustainability. Sedlak has over 20 years of experience in restaurant and supply chain food safety, quality assurance, and procurement leadership at leading foodservice brands. She is an active member of the Association of Food and Drug Officials (AFDO), the Conference for Food Protection (CFP), Partners with a Common Purpose (PwCP), the National Restaurant Association (NRA), and the National Environmental Health Assocation Business Industry Affiliates (NEHA BIA). Sedlak is also active with the Johnson Wales University (JWU) advisory council, Healthy People 2030 Norovirus working group, and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). Her bachelor’s degree is from the University of North Dakota. She and her two children, Lydia and Frank, live in Illinois.

Liz Sertl


Liz Sertl is Senior Director, Supply Chain Visibility at GS1 US and has more than 20 years of experience in the CPG industry. Working closely with supply chain partners, Sertl facilitates collaboration best practices and guidelines that help companies improve product traceability and supply chain visibility through the adoption of GS1 Standards.

Sadie Shervheim     

National Environmental Health Association

Sadie Shervheim is a Project Coordinator for the National Environmental Health Association. She works with industry and regulatory partners to develop body art resources for environmental health inspectors and the communities they serve. 

Dr. Utkarsh Shrivastava      

Western Michigan University

Dr. Utkarsh Shrivastava, Assistant Professor at Western Michigan University’s Haworth College of Business, holds a doctorate in information systems from the University of South Florida Tampa. His research areas include business analytics, artificial intelligence in healthcare, and IT for development, with publications in esteemed journals and conferences. Additionally, he holds a U.S. patent in machine learning for patient triaging and has editorial roles at the American Journal of Business and the International Conference on Health IT Advancement. 

Katherine Simon     

Minnesota Department of Agriculture 

Tim Slawinski      

Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development

Tim Slawinski is the director of the Bureau of Food Safety and Animal Health (BFA) at the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD). With over 24 years of combined experience in the private sector and state government, he oversees efforts to protect animal health and ensure a safe food supply. Slawinski joined MDARD in 2012, specializing in food safety, and assumed leadership roles culminating in his current position as Bureau Director. He holds a bachelor’s degree in microbiology from Michigan State University. 

Christy Smith     

Alabama Department of Agriculture & Industries

Stefanie Smith     

Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture

Stefanie Smith is the Division Chief for Food Safety Policy & Programs at the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture Bureau of Food Safety and Laboratory Services. She manages a team of nine Program Specialists covering various areas including Retail, Manufacturing, Milk, Seafood, Shellfish, Eggs, Produce, and Seasonal Farm Labor Camps. Smith, a Registered Dietitian, holds a master’s degree from Marywood University and a bachelor’s degree from Penn State University, both in nutritional sciences. She has been with the department since May 2017. 

Christopher J. Smith      

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Christopher Smith is a Retail Food Branch Director within FDA’s Office of State Cooperative Programs. He has been with FDA for 14 years and previously worked for 13 years with state and local health departments in North Carolina. 

Tiara Smith     

National Association of County and City Health Officials

Sara Sowko      

Contra Costa Health

Mark Speltz      

Iowa Department of Inspections, Appeals & Licensing

Mark Speltz is Food Safety Bureau Chief, Iowa Department of Inspections, Appeals & Licensing. He received a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University in 1994 and began his career in the hospitality industry. For the last 24 years, Speltz has held several positions in the Food Safety Bureau starting as an inspector and for the last five years, Bureau Chief. In his current position, he oversees all bureau regulatory programs including retail food, manufactured food, home food processing, and lodging. 

Raymond Starin      

Minnesota Department of Agriculture

Raymond Starin, with over a decade of food safety regulation experience, currently works as a food inspector and retail HACCP consultant at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA). In this role, he ensures stringent safety and compliance standards in the food industry. His expertise spans manufactured food inspections, FDA contract inspections, and specialization in acidified foods and juice HACCP. Previously, he held roles such as QA Manager and SQF Practitioner across various food, drug, cosmetic, and USDA facilities. Starin is also active on the Minnesota REHS/RS Advisory Council and liaises with multiple MDA-delegated inspection agencies. He holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Minnesota State University Mankato. 

Kelly Stevens      

General Mills

Alexander Steward      

MI Farmers Market Association

Alexander Steward was elected to the Michigan Farmers Market Association’s Board of Directors in 2022 and re-elected in 2024. He has served as Board President since 2023. Since 2019, he has chaired MIFMA’s Advocacy Committee, advocating for policies affecting the state’s 300 farmers markets, including food assistance programs and the Cottage Food Law. With over a decade of experience as a Farmers Market Manager and Community Events Organizer in Southeast Michigan, Mr. Steward is a graduate of the University of Michigan-Dearborn and Schoolcraft College. 

Dr. Laura Strawn      

Virginia Tech

Dr. Laura K. Strawn is an Associate Professor and Extension Specialist of Produce Safety in the Department of Food Science and Technology at Virginia Tech. Her research program focuses on the microbial safety of fresh fruits and vegetables, specifically the ecology, evolution, and transmission of foodborne pathogens throughout the produce supply chain. Strawn works directly with produce stakeholders on troubleshooting various produce safety challenges, and she is a lead instructor for various food safety curriculums. 

Stephanie Streight      

Peoria City/County Health Department

Kimberly Stryker      

Kimberly Stryker, Program Manager of the Alaska Food Safety and Sanitation Program, has been in this role since 2011 and has worked with the program in different key roles for 25 years. She is a lifelong Alaskan. Stryker has held many leadership roles and has served on many food safety committees over varied food safety topics pertaining to both manufactured and retail food. Presently, she serves as the Vice President of AFDO. 

John Swierk      

Binghamton University

John Swierk earned his undergraduate degrees in chemistry and materials science and engineering from the University of Pennsylvania, a doctorate in chemistry from Pennsylvania State University, and completed postdoctoral appointments at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab and Yale University. In 2018, he joined Binghamton University (SUNY) as an assistant professor. His research in the Swierk Group focuses on radical reactions initiated by photo and electrochemical methods, with applications ranging from small molecule synthesis to tattoo ink photodegradation. Swierk’s work has been featured by NPR, ABC News, Forbes, the New York Post, People, and other media outlets. 

Alan Tart    

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Dr. Robert Tauxe      

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 

Jodi Taylor      

Ohio Department of Agriculture

Jodi Taylor’s public health career began in 1998, when she accepted a position with the Ohio Department of Agriculture, Division of Meat Inspection. She spent 17 years with that program before taking the Assistant Chief position with the Division of Food Safety in August of 2015. In April 2024, Taylor accepted the Division Chief position for the Division of Food Safety. Her responsibilities include rule development and revisions, budget management, and progressive enforcement issues.  

Dr. Hilary Thesmar      

Food Marketing Institute

With over 20 years of experience, Dr. Hilary Thesmar leads technical issues for FMI members, including food safety, regulatory affairs, recall plans, crisis management, research, and health programs. She holds a Ph.D. in food technology from Clemson University, a master’s degree in human nutrition from Winthrop University, and a bachelor’s degree in food science from Clemson. Thesmar is a Registered Dietitian, Fellow of the Institute of Food Technologists, and active member of the International Food Protection Association and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. 

Phil Tocco      

Michigan State University

Phil Tocco serves as Extension Educator with Michigan State University. He is an educator in on-farm produce safety statewide. Tocco has provided leadership and coordination of statewide programming in on-farm food safety since 2009. He has a master’s degree in plant protection and pest management from the University of California-Davis and a bachelor’s degree in biology from Western Michigan University. Tocco has training in field crop, vegetable, and fruit production, with some experience in all three. 

Megan Todd     

University of Maryland

Margaret (Megan) Todd is Faculty & Senior Legal Specialist at the University of Maryland, Baltimore Carey School of Law, focusing on agricultural law education since 2019. She covers topics including labor, food safety, conservation leasing, urban agriculture, zoning, permitting, contracting, and risk management. Todd earned her bachelor’s degree in environmental studies policy from SUNY-ESF and a JD from the University of Maryland, Baltimore Carey School of Law, specializing in environmental law. She also holds a paralegal studies certificate from Harper College. Before law school, Todd worked as a litigation paralegal for four years. She is a member of the Maryland State Bar Association and serves on its Agriculture Law Section Council. 

Randy Treadwell      

Association of Food and Drug Officials

Sinisa Urban     

Maryland Public Health Laboratory

Dr. Sin Urban is Chief of Environmental Sciences at the Maryland public health laboratory. With 72 scientists and 15 analytical sections, the Division of Environmental Sciences is the largest and most scientifically diverse of any Maryland laboratory. Under Urban’s direction, the lab has implemented PFAS testing, brought on a large-scale food safety testing program, and is modernizing its emergency response capabilities and electronic data reporting.

Brendalee Viveiros     

Rhode Island Department of Health

Rebecca Vought      


Becky Vought brings 22 years of public health and food safety expertise to her role with the national Retail Food Policy Team at CFSAN, joining in February 2024. Her experience spans retail food safety, food science, and outbreak response, including six years in local health and state-level programs at the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development. Vought is an active member of CFP, serving as an Executive Board member and Conference Chair, representing the Midwest.  

Patrick Cournoyer     

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Patrick Cournoyer is a senior science advisor leading the FDA’s Cannabis Product Committee, overseeing the agency’s cannabis-related activities. Previously, he was a regulatory scientist in the FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition (CFSAN), specializing in the regulation of cannabis-derived substances as food ingredients and evaluating food safety of new plant varieties. Cournoyer joined the FDA in 2013 after completing his doctorate at Yale University, focusing on plant immune system biology. 

Roberta Wagner     

International Dairy Foods Association

Roberta Wagner, Senior VP of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs at the International Dairy Foods Association, previously served as VP of Regulatory and Technical Affairs at the Consumer Brands Association (formerly the Grocery Manufacturers Association). Prior to her industry roles, Wagner held key positions in public service, including Assistant Administrator at USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) and various roles at the FDA over 28 years, including Associate Commissioner for Food Safety Modernization Act implementation. 

Shelly Wallingford      

First Watch Restaurants

Kyle Walsh     

Chester County Health Department

Kyle Walsh has experience in teaching organic chemistry, doing analytical work at a copper mine, and working as an environmental health specialist and environmental health supervisor in Arizona. He has been with the Chester County Health Department in Pennsylvania, since 2020. 

Michael Walton      

BCD iLabs

Michael Walton is President of BCD iLabs, an AI for Food company. Previously, he was a Manufacturing Industry Executive at Microsoft, Global Head of Manufacturing Industry at Google, and he’s a retired U.S. Army Reserve Colonel (Corp of Engineers).  

Stacey Watrobski      

Cannabis Workers Resource

Stacey Watrobski is a cannabis advocate, consultant, and founder of Cannabis Workers Resource, bringing charisma and passion into labor relations, health, and safety. With nearly two decades in cannabis, retail, and hospitality, she has become dedicated to promoting informed discussions and strategies for a standardized and responsible cannabis industry. Watrobski holds a bachelor’s degree from Oakland University, and currently sits on the board of two non-profits and several coalitions, offering valuable perspectives on navigating the intersections of health, safety, and collective labor.

Stephanie Weber      


Stephanie Weber, Industry Leader at Appian, brings extensive experience from consulting firms like McKinsey & Company, Deloitte, NTT Data, and BearingPoint, as well as technology giants such as Microsoft, Amazon Web Services, and Salesforce. She specializes in leveraging technology and AI to enhance citizen interactions with government services, with a focus on inclusivity and accessibility. Weber leads projects in cloud and application modernization, conducts citizen engagement workshops, and implements customer experience mapping initiatives. 

Lisa Weddig      


Lisa Weddig is the Chief Food Safety Officer at NFI. Since 2007, she has been the primary liaison for regulatory issues, food safety, labeling developments, and seafood fraud concerns for association members. Prior to NFI, Weddig spent 18 years at the Food Products Association (now Consumer Brands Association), holding various positions in thermal processing, HACCP, food safety, and educational support. She holds a bachelor’s degree in food science from Virginia Tech and a master’s degree in nutrition education from Hood College. 

Jonathan D. Wheeler      

South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control

Jonathan Wheeler, a food scientist and Special Processes Team Lead at the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SC DHEC), brings nearly 25 years of HACCP-related expertise. He reviews and approves “Special Process” HACCP plans, conducts training for retail food customers and inspectors, and instructs the SC Rapid Response Team. Wheeler’s skills span commercial food laboratory management, environmental monitoring program design, pathogen contamination event investigation, and GMP and HACCP audits. He holds certifications including PCQI and Certified HACCP Manager, and a degree in chemistry from Erskine College. 

Carolyn White      

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

Carolyn White, a Retail Food Specialist at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s Office of State and Cooperative Programs, is stationed in Kansas City, Missouri, working with Illinois, Indiana, and North Carolina. Previously, she served as a Training and Grants Manager for a local Environmental Public Health Program. With over 15 years of combined regulatory and industry experience, White emphasizes collaborative relationships to enhance public health outcomes. She advocates for quality improvement through the Voluntary National Retail Food Regulatory Program Standards to mitigate foodborne illness risk factors. 

Monica J. Wilkins      


Summer Williams     

Georgia Department of Agriculture

Summer Williams serves as the Food Safety Division Deputy Director at the Georgia Department of Agriculture, joining in 2021. Formerly, she served as the Rapid Response Team (RRT) Program Manager, Recall Coordinator, and Outreach Coordinator at GDA. Prior to joining GDA, she worked with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services as the Emergency Response Coordinator. Williams is currently the Vice President on the Association of Food and Drug Officials of the Southern States (AFDOSS) board and represents AFDOSS on the AFDO board. 

Elisabeth Wirsing      

Vermont Department of Health

Elisabeth Wirsing serves as the Senior Environmental Health Program Manager at the Vermont Department of Health. This role includes directing the Food & Lodging Program work in retail food, manufactured food, shellfish, and lodging since 2010. She completed an MPH in epidemiology at Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health. 

Beth Wittry     

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

CDR Beth Wittry is an Environmental Health Officer with the CDC National Center for Environmental Health’s Safe Food Section. She oversees food safety research projects to understand environmental factors associated with foodborne illnesses and outbreaks. This research advances science-based prevention and intervention recommendations, enhances outbreak investigation practices, and informs national food safety policies.  

Lori Woznicki      

Texas Department of State Health Services

Lori Woznicki began her career 20 years ago with the Texas Department of State Health Services as a drug inspector in Houston. She has managed the Drugs and Medical Devices program and currently is the Director for the Food and Drug Inspections Unit for DSHS. The Food and Drug Inspections unit regulates manufactured food products, drugs and medical devices, milk and dairy, and consumable hemp products. 

Dr. Felicia Wu      

Michigan State University

Joann Xiong-Mercado      

Marion County Public Health Department

JoAnn Xiong-Mercado, a Hoosier, holds a bachelor’s degree in public health from Indiana University-Indianapolis and an Associate of Science in Hospitality from Ivy Tech Community College. Since 2011, she has been with the Marion County Public Health Department, initially in Mosquito Control before transferring to Food & Consumer Safety. Xiong-Mercado participated in the International Food Protection Training Institute Fellowship in 2016-2017, served as Past-President of the Indiana Environmental Health Association, and is currently a member of the National Environmental Health Association Environmental Health Leadership Academy program. Residing in Indianapolis, Indiana, with her husband, Ryan, and three kids, she enjoys live trivia, thrifting, and cooking in her free time. 

Tim York     

California Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement

Tim York is the CEO of California Leafy Greens Marketing Agreement. The LGMA was formed in 2007 to protect public health. York joined the LGMA on December 1, 2020. Prior to the LGMA, he worked with Markon, beginning in 1985 as Purchasing Director and then as President from 1990 to 2020. He has been instrumental in the industry addressing food safety, and in the formation of the Center for Produce Safety in 2007. York served as the center’s Chairman from 2007 to 2012.