ROCKVILLE, MD. — US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) Commissioner Robert M. Califf announced Feb. 17 that Tracey Forfa will serve as the new director of the FDA’s Center of Veterinary Medicine (CVM). Industry associations Pet Food Institute (PFI) and the American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) expressed their support of the appointment.

“After a robust recruitment and interview process, I’m pleased to announce Tracey’s selection as center director,” Califf said. “I know she will continue to apply the center’s guiding principles: protecting public health; regulating based on the best evidence and science; leveraging and collaboration; operating transparently; continuous quality improvement; and strong stakeholder engagement.”

Forfa has served the CVM since 2002, having previously served as the administration’s deputy center director in 2008, as well as acting director in 2016. She has been acting as the CVM’s director since Steven M. Solomon’s retirement in December 2022.

“The PFI would like to congratulate Tracey Forfa on being named the new director of the FDA’s CVM,” said Dana Brooks, president and chief executive officer of PFI. “Her long career at FDA and with CVM provides her the experience that she needs to support and lead science-based regulations to ensure safe food and drugs for America’s pets. We are excited to continue our engagement and collaboration with Forfa.”

Forfa represents the first non-veterinarian to hold the position. Because of this, Califf announced that the agency would name a chief veterinary officer to help advise the CVM on a variety of veterinary issues.

“We congratulate Tracey Forfa for her new role as center director of the FDA’s CVM, a program charged with ensuring safe animal food, animal drugs and veterinary medical devices are brought to the marketplace,” said Constance Cullman, president and chief executive officer of the AFIA. “With her rich, 30-year history at the FDA, we have no doubt that her knowledge of the animal food industry will serve the agency well as it looks to modernize its regulatory processes to keep up with scientific advances in animal nutrition and help the United States regain its global competitive edge.

“With its planned reorganization of the food program, the FDA is at a critical juncture, and we are confident that Tracey will be the effective leader Commissioner Robert Califf and the animal food industry needs to ensure the unique products the CVM regulates are properly addressed,” Cullman added.

Read more about personnel changes throughout the industry.