President-elect Joe Biden’s newly established coronavirus advisory board includes three faculty members at the University of California at San Francisco, the university said Monday. Professor of pediatrics, epidemiology and biostatistics Dr. David Kessler, professor of medicine Dr. Eric Goosby and emergency medicine professor Dr. Robert Rodriguez will serve on the 13-member board and offer public health and scientific counsel to Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris as they transition into the White House.
“The advisory board will help shape my approach to managing the surge in reported infections; ensuring vaccines are safe, effective, and distributed efficiently, equitably, and free; and protecting at-risk populations,” Biden said in a statement.
In joining the advisory board, Kessler and Goosby will both be returning to the federal government after having served under multiple presidents over the last 25 years. Kessler served as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration commissioner under Presidents George H.W. Bush and Bill Clinton while Goosby was the interim director of the White House’s Office of National AIDS Policy during the Clinton administration and helped implement the Obama administration’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief.
Rodriguez, in addition to being a member of UCSF’s faculty, works in Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital and Trauma Center’s emergency department and Highland Hospital’s intensive care unit.
“[Kessler, Goosby and Rodriguez] represent the extraordinary and relentless dedication the UCSF community has shown in meeting the challenge of the coronavirus across our patient care, research, and education efforts,” UCSF Chancellor Sam Hawgood said in an open letter to the university’s community.
Gov. Gavin Newsom said the inclusion of the three UCSF faculty members on the advisory board is indicative of the state’s “endless pool of talent.” Newsom added that he expects others from California to be tapped for formal and informal roles in the Biden administration, with the only downside being that they would be leaving the state. “I’m working hard to convince them not to submit a resume,” Newsom said in jest. “I say that slightly tongue-in-cheek, I want to support whatever they choose, but we have some really talented people and it’s wonderful to see some of those people on the shortlist.”