OSHA Administrator Edwin Foulke Resigns

Edwin Foulke Jr., nominated on Sept. 15, 2005 by President George W. Bush to head OSHA, has resigned. According to sources, his final day is Nov. 7.

“As we near the end of the administration, it is expected that political appointees will pursue other employment opportunities and challenges,” said a Department of Labor spokesperson. “Assistant Secretary Edwin Foulke will depart OSHA at the end of this week to pursue such challenges, having led his agency to achieve the lowest injury, illness and fatality rates in recorded OSHA history. American workers are safer today thanks to the dedication and service of Assistant Secretary Foulke and his team.”

In an article written for the first issue of EHS Today, published this month, Foulke wrote, “Changing populations, a workforce that has doubled in size, the development of new industries and technologies and unexpected national events have all had an impact on the way OSHA fulfills its mandate to assure the safety and health of America's working men and women. During the two and a half years that I have had the privilege to serve as the assistant secretary of Labor for OSHA, my job has been to ensure that the agency meets these challenges in the most effective way possible.”

Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao announced on March 15, 2006 that the United States Senate had confirmed Foulke, a former partner in the law firm on Jackson Lewis LLP in Greenville, S.C., saying, “Ed has extensive knowledge and experience in workplace safety and health issues that he will put to use to protect workers and promote employer compliance.”

Foulke served on the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission from 1990 to 1995, chairing the commission from March 1990 through February 1994. The commission is an independent federal adjudicatory agency that renders decisions in job safety and health disputes arising from inspections conducted by OSHA.
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