IAFP Announces 2014 Travel Award Recipients
Tuesday, May 6, 2014
Des Moines, Iowa – The International Association for Food Protection (IAFP) will present Travel Awards to the following individuals at IAFP 2014, August 3–6, in Indianapolis, Indiana. Sponsored by IAFP and the IAFP Foundation, the Travel Award for State or Local Health or State Agricultural Department Employees and the Travel Award for a Food Safety Professional in a Country with a Developing Economy will provide funding to enable recipients to travel to IAFP 2014.
The Travel Award for State or Local Health or State Agricultural Department Employees will be presented to the following individuals:
Jamie DeMent is the Food and Waterborne Disease Program (FWDP) Coordinator for the Florida Department of Health (FDOH), located in Tallahassee. In her current role, she has provided guidance for the Florida Integrated Food Safety Center of Excellence and participated in the Florida Integrated Rapid Response Team and other food safety work groups. Ms. DeMent has served as the primary epidemiologist responsible for carrying out a full range of complex epidemiologic and surveillance activities related to foodborne and waterborne illnesses.
Dr. Paul Fox has been with the Hawaii Department of Health’s State Labs Division’s Laboratory Emergency Response Program in Pearl City for 11 years. During this time, Dr. Fox has served as a subject matter expert and trainer for packing and shipping of infectious substances, as well as providing oversight to Hawaii’s State Lab as it selected and rolled out its first Laboratory Information Management System (LIMS). He is a member of the Food Emergency Response Network (FERN) group, working with methods validation and performing screening assays to detect Salmonella spp. in Ready-to-Eat (RTE) food and food products from Asia and the Pacific, utilizing bioMérieux’s VIDAS system and BAM.
Ted Gatesy is the Microbiology Section Manager for the Laboratory Division of the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) for the State of Michigan in East Lansing, where he oversees numerous food safety-related microbiology programs for the department, including Michigan’s dairy laboratory, pathogen testing in RTE foods and fresh produce, FDA and USDA FERN programs and various microbiology-related FDA grants. Mr. Gatesy also serves as a representative on MDARD’s Rapid Response Team and served as a member of the MDARD team that received the FDA’s Commissioner’s Special Citation for their work on Salmonella-contaminated pet food in 2012.
Jennifer Pierquet is a Project Consultant Sr. at the Minnesota Department of Agriculture, Dairy and Food Inspection Division in St. Paul, where she currently manages several initiatives, including writing grant proposals and working with the Minnesota State Patrol and Division’s Food Supervisors to implement a new data-capturing process for inspecting refrigerated food trucks. Ms. Pierquet is a member of the state’s Rapid Response Team.
Dr. Amy Woron is the Molecular Biologist for Laboratory Services at the Tennessee Department of Health in Nashville, where she oversees the enteric bacteriology and molecular biology departments. Dr. Woron has lectured on molecular and enteric topics in public health and is a member of numerous working groups, including the Association of Public Health Labs Food Safety Committee, the American Society for Microbiology and a delegate member of the Association of Public Health Labs. Dr. Woron also holds an adjunct professor appointment with Tennessee State University, is an adjunct instructor for the National Center for Biomedical Research and Training through Louisiana State University, and is an Auditor for the International Influenza Laboratory Capacity Program through the Association of Public Health Laboratories.
The Travel Award for a Food Safety Professional in a Country with a Developing Economy will be presented to the following individual:
Gulu Gwesa is the current Technical Manager of the Food Testing Department (Microbiology and Chemistry Units) of the National Standards Laboratory of Liberia in Monrovia, where he ensures the safety and quality of food entering and exiting the country. Mr. Gwesa was part of the pioneer staff of the National Standards Laboratory of Liberia, which was pivotal to today’s Liberia premier quality infrastructure, the National Standards Laboratory. He is a representative among international scientists in biodiversity networking laboratories for the detection of GMOs. Mr. Gwesa also serves as a faculty member at both the University of Liberia and at Mother Pattern College of Health Sciences.
About International Association for Food Protection
The International Association for Food Protection (IAFP) represents more than 4,300 food safety professionals committed to Advancing Food Safety Worldwide®. The association includes educators, government officials, microbiologists, food industry executives and quality control professionals who are involved in all aspects of growing, storing, transporting, processing and preparing all types of foods. Working together, IAFP members, representing more than 70 countries, help the association achieve its mission through networking, educational programs, journals, career opportunities and numerous other resources.