Margaret Hamburg

Margaret Hamburg, MD is the former Commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, having stepped down from that role in April 2015 after almost six years of service.

Dr. Hamburg earned her B.A. from Harvard College, her M.D. from Harvard Medical School and completed an Internal Medicine residency at Weill Cornell Medical Center. Following completion of her formal medical training, Dr. Hamburg went to Washington to explore the world of health policy. She soon took on a role as Assistant Director of the National Institute of Allergy And Infectious Diseases (NIAID) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).
In 1997, President Clinton named Dr. Hamburg Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. She later became founding Vice President for Biological Programs at the Nuclear Threat Initiative, a foundation dedicated to reducing the threat to public safety from nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons.

In March 2009, President Obama nominated Dr. Hamburg for the post of FDA Commissioner. In that role, Dr. Hamburg emphasized the critical need for innovation in meeting medical care and public health needs. As Commissioner, she provided leadership on many groundbreaking activities, including: new authority to regulate tobacco products; implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act designed to transform food safety to a preventive system rather than simply responding when outbreaks occur; and modernization of the system for the evaluation and approval of medical products. Dr. Hamburg also worked hard to reposition FDA as an agency prepared for the challenges of globalization and was very active in efforts to establish new mechanisms for global governance of regulatory systems, including enhanced communication, collaboration and regulatory harmonization.

Dr. Hamburg is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American College of Physicians, as well as a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, where she now serves as Foreign Secretary.