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Washington Outlook Archive

Tenenbaum Named CPSC Chairman

James A. Morrissey, Washington Correspondent

Inez Moore Tenenbaum, former South Carolina superintendent of education, has been confirmed by the Senate to head the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC), a demoralized agency that has suffered as a result of budget and staff cuts. Noting that the CPSC has fallen on hard times, Tenenbaum said her major assignment will be to implement a sweeping consumer safety law enacted last year that grants new authority and funding to the agency. “There are a great number of challenges facing the CPSC,” she said, adding that the “good thing” is that Congress voted last year to revitalize the agency.

A Democrat who ran unsuccessfully for the Senate in 2004, Tenenbaum received high praise from South Carolina’s Republican senators.

Sen. Jim DeMint said: “I am confident she has the determination and skills to lead this important commission. I look forward to working with her to ensure our nation continues to have the safest products in the world.”

Sen. Lindsey Graham, likewise, hailed the appointment, saying Tenenbaum will “hit the ground running” and will provide the agency with the leadership it needs.

June 23, 2009