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Movers and Shakers

Nutrition Today Editorial Advisory Board Member David Allison Earns Presidential Honors, Attends White House Ceremony

David B. Allison, PhD, professor of biostatistics and head of the Section on Statistical Genetics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Public Health and Nutrition Today Editorial Advisory Board member, has been given the Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics, and Engineering Mentoring. There are only 10 individual winners selected each year.

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This award, the nation's highest for mentoring in science, engineering, and mathematics, and given by the president of the United States, recognizes 10 individuals and 1 organization that have demonstrated a commitment to mentoring students and increasing the participation of minorities, women, and students with disabilities in science, technology, mathematics, and engineering. Allison was honored at a White House ceremony in the fall.


Allison also is a professor of nutrition sciences and the director of the National Institutes of Health-funded Clinical Nutrition Research Center at the University of Alabama at Birmingham School of Health Professions. He heads interdisciplinary scientific programs that include statistical genetics, clinical nutrition research, genomics, obesity, and longevity. Underrepresented trainees are attracted to his academic research areas, he said, because of the high visibility of the subject matter and because of the disproportionate prevalence of obesity and related comorbidities currently evidenced in the African American and other minority communities. In all, Allison has mentored 64 scientists, a large proportion from underrepresented groups. Congratulations, David!


Wansink Named Executive Director of the US Department of Agriculture Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion

Dr Brian Wansink has been appointed as the executive director of the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion. Doctor Wansink currently serves as the John S. Dyson Professor of Marketing and the director of the Cornell Food and Brand Lab in the Department of Applied Economics and Management at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York. Welcome to Washington, Brian!

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At the Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, Doctor Wansink will be responsible for overseeing the planning, development, and review of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, the food pyramid known as, and programs including the Healthy Eating Index, the USDA Food Plans, the Nutrient Content of the US Food Supply, and the cost of raising a child.


Doctor Wansink has had academic appointments at Dartmouth College; Vrije Universiteit in Amsterdam; the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania; the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; INSEAD at Fountainbleau, France; US Army Research Labs; and Cornell University. He received a doctorate in philosophy at Stanford University in 1990, master's degree at Drake University in 1984, and bachelor of arts at Wayne State University in 1982. Congratulations, Brian!


US Department of Agriculture Chief Economist Dr Keith Collins to Retire

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) announces the retirement of Chief Economist Dr Keith Collins and the appointment of Deputy Chief Economist Dr Joseph Glauber as acting chief economist. Collins has served as USDA chief economist for the past 15 years, overseeing USDA's program of market forecasts and projections. Collins' 32 years of federal service has included leadership with wide-ranging impact in the economic analysis of agricultural policy, energy and bioproducts, risk assessment and cost-benefit analysis, and global climate change. Collins has also served as chairman of the board of directors of the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation for the past 7 years and chairman and vice chairman of the USDA Graduate School.

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Glauber, USDA acting chief economist, returns to USDA in December from temporary assignment to the office of the US Trade Representative and will retain his role as Special Doha Agricultural Envoy for the United States. Glauber has served as deputy chief economist at USDA since 1992.


Pan American Health and Education Foundation Searches for Executive Director

The Pan American Health and Education Foundation is seeking a strong, visionary, and experienced leader to serve as executive director. This is an exceptional opportunity for an individual who is deeply knowledgeable about Latin America and the Caribbean, is familiar with health issues affecting the region, and has well-honed fund-raising and management skills. This individual must also be familiar with US laws and regulations. To view the job announcement, please go to


Ausman Becomes Al Qasimi Professor at Tufts

The first Sagr bin Mohammed Al Qasimi Professor in International Nutrition was named at Tufts University's Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy. It is none other than our Nutrition Today Editorial Advisory Board member Lynne M Ausmann D.Sc,RD. Lynne's first international experience came in working on malnutrition and mental development in Colombia. She served as Dean of Students at the Friedman School from 1993-2005 after joining it in 1981, and further developed her interest in mentoring aspiring nutrition professionals in both basic science and policy areas at the school, and among both international and American students. She has led a distance learning project which is a joint project between the government of Kas Al Khaimah, one of the United Arab Emirates, and Tufts Friedman School. Lynne's chair is name for His Higness Skekh Saqr bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, who is a member of the Supreme Council for the UAE and the ruler of the emirate. Congratulation, Lynne, and we hope to hear more about your activities in the near future.

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Marion Mason

Dr Marion Mason, Ruby Winslow Linn Professor of Nutrition and emeritus at Simmons College, died on October 24, 2007, at Charlottesville, Virginia. Doctor Mason served on the faculty from 1973 to 1996. She was the first holder of the endowed Ruby Winslow Linn nutrition chair. She received her undergraduate degree from Miami University of Ohio, her master's degree from Ohio State University, and her doctorate from Cornell University. Doctor Mason completed her dietetic internship at Massachusetts General Hospital. She was a member of the honorary societies of Omicron Nu and Sigma Xi.


Doctor Mason was well known as the senior author of the Dynamics of Clinical Dietetics, published in 1977, the first textbook of its kind. Doctor Mason served the American Dietetic Association in several leadership roles.


A memorial service will be held in the spring in Weston, Massachusetts.