ARLINGTON, VA— May 25, 2011—Today, the Food Marketing Institute (FMI) announced the appointment of Dr. Hilary S. Thesmar, Ph.D., RD, as vice president of food safety programs for the nation’s largest food retail trade association. Starting in mid June, Thesmar joins FMI from the National Turkey Federation (NTF), where she served as senior director of scientific and regulatory affairs.

At FMI, Thesmar will be responsible for supervising all programs and activities related to food safety, food defense and food quality systems. She will serve FMI member companies as their advisor and representative before governmental, scientific, consumer and industry audiences on issues related to food safety.

“I am pleased to welcome Hilary to the FMI staff,” says Leslie G. Sarasin, president and chief executive officer of FMI. “Her strong academic background in food technology and human nutrition creates a unique blend of perspectives, combining food safety expertise with the practical considerations of a registered dietitian. Her stellar scientific credentials and her food industry experience will help us take our exceptional FMI Food Safety Programs to the next level.”

While serving at NTF, Thesmar guided the scientific and regulatory affairs department’s development of programs in food safety, environmental, animal health and welfare, worker safety and health and human resources regulation. The cultivation of these practical programs, permitted the turkey industry to profitably produce safe and nutritious products. In her role as the primary liaison to the federal agencies regulating turkey production and processing, Thesmar often provided crisis management support to NTF member companies.

Prior to working at NTF, Thesmar was the director of the Egg Safety Center in Washington, D.C., in addition to working with the Egg Nutrition Center. In these roles, she directed the American Egg Board food safety research program, worked with government and private agencies involved in food safety, served as a spokesperson for the industry and provided technical expertise to the egg industry on food safety and nutrition issues.

Thesmar holds a Ph.D. in Food Technology from Clemson University, a Master of Science degree in Human Nutrition from Winthrop University, a bachelor’s degree in Food Science from Clemson, and she is a Registered Dietitian.

Thesmar is a member of the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), the American Dietetic Association, the International Association for Food Protection, and the US Animal Health Association. She also held several leadership positions in the IFT Food Laws and Regulations Division and in the Washington, D.C., Section of IFT.