Moderator: Fawn Johnson
Correspondent, National Journal
Dr. Margaret Ann Hamburg
Commissioner, U.S. Food and Drug Administration
The Honorable Connie Morella
Ambassador in Residence, Women & Politics Institute, American University
Margaret A. Hamburg
Margaret A. Hamburg became the 21st Commissioner of Food and Drugs in May 2009. The second woman to be nominated for this position, she is an experienced medical doctor, scientist, and public health executive. As the top official of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Dr. Hamburg is currently overseeing the implementation of laws to curb the use of tobacco and enhance food safety, and has undertaken major efforts streamline and modernize FDA’s regulatory pathways.
Before joining FDA, Dr. Hamburg worked at the Nuclear Threat Initiative from 2001 to 2009, first as the vice president for biological programs and later as the foundation’s senior scientist. From 1997 to 2001, she was assistant secretary for policy and evaluation at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and in the 1990s she served as commissioner of the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Dr. Hamburg earned her undergraduate and medical school degrees from Harvard University.
Fawn Johnson is a correspondent for National Journal, covering a range of issues including immigration, transportation and education. Johnson is a long-time student of Washington policymaking, previously reporting for Dow Jones Newswires and the Wall Street Journal where she covered financial regulation and telecommunications. She is an alumnus of CongressDaily, where she covered health care, labor, and immigration. Johnson first covered Congress at BNA Inc., where she covered labor, welfare, immigration, and asbestos liability. She has an M.A. from the Annenberg School for Communication at University of Pennsylvania and a B.A. from Bates College.
Connie Morella currently serves on the faculty of American University’s School of Public Affairs as ambassador in residence of the Women & Politics Institute. From 2003 to 2007, she served in Paris as U.S. ambassador to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, an international organization of 34 countries providing a forum to seek solutions to common problems and coordinate the domestic and international policies of its members.
Ambassador Morella previously represented Maryland’s eighth congressional district in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1987 to 2003. While in Congress, she successfully initiated legislation addressing domestic violence and child support while serving as a strong Republican voice on the issues of environmental protection, healthcare reform, and human rights issues. Ambassador Morella also worked as a professor for 15 years, concurrently serving as a member of the Maryland House of Delegates. She earned her BA from Boston University and her MA from American University.
Connie Morella, Ambassador in residence of the Women & Politics Institute, weighs in on the socioeconomic reasons more women don't run for office. Morella argues that money and lack of party support discourage women from participating.