CDC Director Resigns

Dr. Julie L. Gerberding resigned from her post as director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) at the request of the Obama administration. Her resignation will be effective Jan. 20.

According to sources, Gerberding announced her resignation in a Jan. 9 e-mail to CDC employees. CDC Chief Operating Officer William Gimson III will replace Gerberding on an interim basis after Obama’s inauguration. A permanent replacement has not yet been named.

A prepared statement from CDC explained: “As part of the transition process, the administration requested resignation letters from a number of senior-level officials, including Dr. Julie Gerberding. This week, the administration accepted Dr. Gerberding’s resignation, effective January 20.”

The request for her resignation did not come as a surprise, according to CDC. “As Dr. Gerberding noted in a November e-mail to CDC leadership, she has always expected that she would be leaving after the administration changes,” the statement added.

Gerberding became CDC director and administrator of the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) in July 2002. During her tenure at CDC, she was praised for working to incorporate bioterrorism research in the agency’s mission, as well as focusing on national health threats and AIDS.

But Gerberding also has been a source of controversy, including her choice to not reappoint John Howard as the director of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) when his term expired in July 2008.
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