New chairman named at U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission

Robert Adler

Robert Adler was named acting chairman of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to fill a position vacated by former chairman Inez Tenenbaum. 

Adler joined the CPSC, an agency that exerts tremendous influence over the consumer packaged goods and retail industries, in 2009 when he was appointed by president Barack Obama. Prior to his appointment Adler served on the Obama Transition Team and and co-authored a report on the CPSC for the administration.

"During this period of transition the American public should know CPSC will continue operations as usual at the ports, in the field, at our laboratory, and with all of our partners in safety,” Adler said. “The Commissioners and I will carry on our mission to protect the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with consumer products using every means at our disposal."

Prior to the CPSC, Adler served as a professor of legal studies at the University of North Carolina as the Luther Hodges Jr., Scholar in Ethics and Law at Chapel Hill's Kenan-Flagler Business School. At the University of North Carolina, he served as the Associate Dean of the MBA Program and as Associate Dean for the School's Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Program. As a professor, he taught courses in business law, business ethics, business-government relations and negotiation. Adler's academic research interests included product safety, product liability, regulation, commercial law, medical malpractice and negotiation. 

Prior to his service at UNC, he spent nine years as an attorney-advisor to two commissioners at the CPSC and as counsel to the Subcommittee on Health and the Environment of the Committee on Energy and Commerce in the U.S. House of Representatives. While on the subcommittee, he worked on legislation relating to product liability, childhood vaccines, the Food and Drug Administration, medical malpractice, and the CPSC. 

Before his service at the CPSC, Adler served as a deputy attorney general for the Pennsylvania Justice Department, where he headed the southwest regional office of the Pennsylvania Bureau of Consumer Protection.

Adler has been involved in numerous consumer protection and education activities for many years. He was elected six times to the board of directors of Consumers Union, publisher of Consumer Reports magazine.

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