Elisabeth Hagen ’91 to Present McNulty Scholars Lecture

USDA Under Secretary for Food Safety will discuss food and public health

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

PHILADELPHIA (Mar. 15, 2011) – Elisabeth Hagen, M.D. ’91 (B.S.), the chief public officer responsible for the safety of the nation’s supply of meat, poultry and egg products, will deliver the spring installment of the McNulty Scholars Lecture Series. Entitled “Protecting Public Health Through Food Safety,” the lecture is free and open to the public. Co-sponsored by the Haub School of Business’ Spirit of Women Lecture Series, it will be held on Wednesday, Mar. 30, at 4 p.m. in the SJU Science Center, room 200.

Sworn in as Under Secretary for Food Safety in August 2010, Hagen oversees the policies and programs of the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), the USDA’s public health regulatory agency that ensures the nation’s supply of meat, poultry and egg products is safe, wholesome and correctly labeled and packaged. Since joining federal government in 2006, Hagen has served in a number of leadership roles and has advanced a science-based, public health agenda at USDA. Prior to her appointment as Under Secretary, she served as the USDA’s Chief Medical Officer, advising FSIS and other USDA mission areas on a range of human health issues, such as food safety, nutrition and zoonotic diseases.

“Saint Joseph’s University is honored to host our distinguished alumna, Dr. Elisabeth Hagen,” said Michael McCann, Ph.D., associate dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and McNulty Scholars program director. “As a model scientist, physician and public servant, whose primary concern is protecting public health through food safety, Dr. Hagen is a perfect example of the kind of leader the McNulty Scholars Program for Excellence in Science and Math aspires to produce.”

“Dr. Hagen's accomplishments are not only exemplary in import but are ethical in practice,” said Vana Zervanos, associate dean of the Haub School of Business. “We are honored to showcase Dr. Hagen’s life’s work and compassion for the underserved in the Spirit of Women Series.”

Before entering 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 publications in infectious diseases and providing medical care to underserved populations. Hagen holds a bachelor’s degree in biology from Saint Joseph’s, an M.D. from Harvard Medical School, and is board certified in infectious diseases.

The McNulty scholarship program is especially suited to SJU’s dedication to creating a culture that nurtures women’s professional success. Currently, there are two cohorts of young women who have received full-tuition, merit-based scholarships through the program to study science and mathematics at Saint Joseph’s.

Alumnus John P. McNulty ’74, after whom the program is named, is remembered for his leadership at Goldman Sachs, where he headed the Investment Management Division and served as a member of the Management Committee. He is known for his leadership in philanthropy, especially his dedication to Saint Joseph’s University. As an undergraduate accounting major, McNulty served as student body president and later became a respected member of the University’s Board of Trustees. Throughout his life, he sought to mentor younger associates and to challenge women to achieve their fullest potential.

Media Contact

Patricia Allen, Senior Associate Director of University Communications, 610-660-3240, patricia.allen@sju.edu

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