2019 Advisory Board

Meet the 2019 expert Food Contact Conference advisory board members.

  • Dr. Mitchell Cheeseman

    Managing Director Environmental and Life Sciences Steptoe & Johnson LLP

    Dr. Mitchell Cheeseman is a managing director in the Washington Office of Steptoe and Johnson LLP, where he is a member of the Regulatory Affairs Department.

    He has 20 years of experience as an official in Food and Drug Administration's Foods program.

    His primary experience is managing the food ingredient and packaging programs including experience in the regulation of direct food additives and food contact substances, color additives, Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) food ingredients, and bioengineered food.

    He held a leadership position over all of these regulatory areas as either the deputy director or acting director of the Office of Food Additive Safety for over five years and has held leadership positions over FDA's Food Contact Notification Program for the program's first 13 years of operation.

    During his FDA career, Dr. Cheeseman has been a lead in the development and implementation of FDA's Threshold of Regulation process for food contact substances and FDA's Food Contact Notification Program.

    He also served in the development of FDA's GRAS Notice Program.

    • USA
  • Dr. Alistair Irvine

    Manager, Food Contact Compliance Smithers Pira

    Alistair manages the Food Packaging Safety Section within Smithers Pira. This involves advising clients on the safety legislation which applies to food packaging in a wide range of different countries throughout the world and coordinating work programmes to ensure that clients' products meet these requirements. His expertise spans all the EU countries, USA, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Israel, Russia and all the South American countries.

    Alistair graduated with a degree and PhD in Chemistry from Birmingham University. After working for BP and the Department of Health, he joined Pira in 1994, taking up his current position in 1995.

  • Kevin C. Kenny

    Chief Operating Officer Decernis, USA

    Kevin is co-founder and owner of Decernis and is an experienced regulatory attorney who has worked and consulted for 20+ years in the food and consumer products space.  He advises some of the world’s largest manufacturers on Food, Food Contact and Supply Chain Compliance challenges globally. Working with a team of native speaker experts in all major markets, Kevin has led a Decernis team effort to expand regulatory coverage to over 200 countries.  He spends much of the year meeting with clients to identify and satisfy their needs across the Decernis global client base. Kevin builds cooperative and partnering relationships with governmental agencies and organizations (today 40+ countries across five continents, including US FDA, European Union, Canada, China and Japan).

    An expert on food contact and food additive regulation globally, Kevin is a frequent speaker at international conferences and an active participant in the Regulatory Affairs Committees of food, cosmetic and consumer product associations.  Kevin also attends the Codex Alimentarius Committee on Food Additives in China annually as a member of the International Food Additives Council.

    Prior to founding Decernis, Kevin worked as a regulatory attorney and later VP, International Operations at Ariel Research, which managed product safety regulations globally for chemical manufacturers.

    Kevin has lived and worked for seven years across five European and Asian countries and is fluent in German, French and Spanish. He possesses an honors Juris Doctor, an LL.M. in International Law and the Hague Diplôm de Droit International.  In 1992, he was awarded an Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellowship in Bonn and later taught International Law courses at the Christian-Albrechts-Universität in Kiel, Germany.

    • USA
  • Emilia C. Lonardo, PhD

    Principal Consultant Lonardo StratReg Associates, LLC

    Since 2015, Emilia C. Lonardo, Ph.D. is a Principal with Lonardo StatReg Associates and advises, lectures, and prepares scientific and regulatory documents on topics regarding ingredient safety and FDA regulatory requirements. Dr. Lonardo brings over 35 years of professional experience. From 2012 to 2015, Dr. Lonardo served as Vice President of Consumer Product Safety and Science Policy at the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) in Washington, DC. At GMA she led programs to modernize GRAS and manage emerging ingredient issues, including partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs) and trans fats. Prior to joining GMA, she was Head of External Engagement and Policy at Johnson & Johnson, leading regulatory programs in Rx drugs, Rx to OTC switch, dietary supplements, and cosmetic portfolios. Emilia also served as Global Head of Regulatory Strategy at Novartis Consumer Health, leading emerging issue management and product stewardship. Before that at the Exxon Corporation, she held the position of Sr. Toxicologist, assessing and ensuring product safety, and authoring food additive petitions. Earlier in her career, as a board certified Medical Technologist at the Cleveland Clinic, she supervised the Immunogenetics and Histocompatibility Laboratory. Dr. Lonardo’s career has focused on food, dietary supplement, and OTC regulatory strategy.

  • George G. Misko

    Partner Keller and Heckman LLP

    George Misko is one of the firm's Food and Drug practice group leaders. Mr. Misko's practice focuses on food and drug matters and environmental concerns, including pesticide regulation, right-to-know laws, and toxic substance control regulations. He has extensive experience counseling clients on regulatory requirements relating to chemical substances, plastics and food products in the U.S. and other jurisdictions, including Canada, the European Union, Latin America, and the Asia-Pacific region. He also represents trade associations, including acting as legal counsel to the Global Silicones Council.

    Prior to joining Keller and Heckman, Mr. Misko was Senior Regulatory Counsel for the Chemical Specialty Manufacturers Association (now known as the Consumer Specialty Products Association), where he provided counsel on a broad range of environmental and health and safety issues. Mr. Misko also is an experienced civil trial and appellate litigator, and served as a law clerk to the late Honorable Nicholas S. Nunzio, Judge of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.

    Mr. Misko is a frequent contributor to trade publications, including Food Safety magazine and Packaging Digest magazine. He also speaks at numerous conferences on food and chemical control laws, and acts as the firm's editor for PackagingLaw.com (http://www.packaginglaw.com/).

     

  • Ron Osborn

    Principal Scientist; Scientific & Regulatory Affairs, Americas R&D, Mars Wrigley Confectionery

    Ron Osborn is currently a Principal Scientist for the Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company, at their Global Innovation Center in Chicago, IL.  He is a member of the Scientific and Regulatory Affairs group and is primarily responsible for the Safety and Regulatory Compliance assessments of food contact materials.  Additional responsibilities include safety evaluations of the seasonal add-on items marketed with Wrigley products and leading the development of Wrigley’s Packaging Compliance Management System.  Prior to his current position, Ron had a successful 20 year career in the analytical laboratory.

  • Dr. Gregory Pace

    Corporate Manager Global Regulatory & Product Stewardship Sun Chemical

    Greg directs the North American and European Regulatory Teams; interpreting Government Regulations and Brand Owner specifications applied to printing ink materials. He consults on the chemical safety and use of all printing ink products; including sensitive packaging.

    He directed the Northeast Customer Technical Service and In-plants teams; aligning the service model with Sales strategy, on printing ink performance. Also as an expert for low migration packaging inks.

    Greg was Technical Manager of Analytical and Characterization, in support of all printing ink product lines. He designed the migration testing protocol.

    He obtained his Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in Food Science from Rutgers University. His research concerned migratory substances in packaging. 
     

  • René Viñas, M.S., Ph.D.

    Manager, Risk Assessment & Toxicology at The Coca-Cola Company Coca-Cola

    Coming Soon