On Nov. 28, President-Elect Joe Biden announced that David Michaels, PhD, MPH, will join the team assisting the transition in preparing its response to contain the virus that causes COVID-19. Michaels was assistant secretary of labor for OSHA from 2009 to January 2017. He previously served as the U.S. Department of Energy’s assistant secretary of energy for environment, safety, and health from 1998 to January 2001. In that role, he was responsible for protecting the workers, community, and environment around the nation’s nuclear weapons facilities. Michaels is currently an epidemiologist and professor of Environmental and Occupational Health at the Milken Institute School of Public Health at George Washington University. The press release from the Biden-Harris Transition notes that much of Michaels’ research focuses on “protecting the integrity of the science underpinning public health, safety, and environmental protections.”
Other new members of the Transition COVID-19 Advisory Board include Jane Hopkins, RNMH, who serves on Washington State’s COVID task force, and Jill Jim, PhD, MPH, MPA, the executive director at the Navajo Nation Department of Health.
“As COVID-19 surges across the country, I need a team advising me and a transition that offers diverse perspectives and viewpoints. Ms. Hopkins, Dr. Jim, and Dr. Michaels will strengthen the board’s work and help ensure that our COVID-19 planning will address inequities in health outcomes and the workforce,” Biden said.
The COVID-19 Advisory Board is co-chaired by David Kessler, MD; Vivek Murthy, MD, MBA; and Marcella Nunez-Smith, MD, MHS. More information about the co-chairs and other advisory board members is available from the Biden-Harris Transition website.