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Issue 10          

May 2012  



Greetings from Bedford Park. Although we were spared a typical Chicago winter this year, IIT IFSH has nevertheless moved into "summer mode." By that I mean we have begun preparation for the variety of scientific meetings from June to September in which IIT IFSH scientist and students will present their data.

While IIT scientists have traditionally presented their work at scientific meetings, we are making a greater effort to become even more involved in scientific and professional societies. IIT IFSH advisors are especially encouraging students not only to present their research, but to compete in graduate paper competitions. Likewise, IIT IFSH scientists are making themselves more available to serve on committees and as elected officers in professional societies.

I believe that this greater involvement will give IIT IFSH greater visibility in the scientific community and enhance the professional development of both our scientists and students. In the coming weeks, we'll publish a list of the presentations IIT IFSH researchers and students will be making this summer at various food safety, food defense and nutrition meetings. I look forward to seeing many of you at the meetings and in the audience!


Best regards,


Robert E. Brackett, PhD

IIT Vice President and IFSH Director 



2012 Mid-Year Meeting Presentations Online      


IIT IFSH members can now downloadmeeting podium presentations given at the 2012 Mid-Year Meeting from the Member area of the institute's website. The presentations are posted for download in PDF format. 


 If you have forgotten your IFSH Member User ID and/or password to the Member area of the website, please contact LaShondra Stephens, Senior Administrative Assistant, via email at  for assistance.



Spring Moving and Shaking Going On      


IIT Vice President and IFSH Director Robert E. Brackett, PhD, has been elected to the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) 2012 Nominations and Elections Committee. IFSH Associate Director Jason Wan, PhD, has been elected secretary of the IFT Non-thermal Processing Division's Executive Board. The newly elected IFT leaders will take their respective positions on September 1, 2012.

Britt Burton-Freeman, PhD, IFSH Director, Center for Nutrition Research, accepted an invitation to serve as co-editor-in-chief with the international peer-review journal Nutrition and Aging, directed to the study of the effects of diets and dietary components on aging and age-related diseases. 


Indika Edirisinghe, PhD, IFSH Senior Scientist, Clinical Nutrition Research Center, recently accepted an advisory council invitation to serve on the Benedictine University's Master of Public Health program.


Alvin Lee, PhD, Director, Center for Processing Innovation, was appointed a member of the International Association for Food Protection's (IAFP) Program Committee for the 2012-2015 term. Mary Lou Tortorello, PhD, Chief, Food Technology Branch with FDA CFSAN/IFSH, is the incoming chair for the committee, which develops the association's annual meeting prorgram, evaluates abstracts, identifies symposia and speakers, and oversees the Developing Scientist Awards Committee.


Joe Schlesser, Ph.D.,
research food technologist with FDA CFSAN's Division of Food Processing Science and Technology at IIT IFSH, retired March 30 after 21 years of service. Prior to his position with IIT IFSH, Joe worked for 10 years at the University of Illinois at
schlesser retirement 2Champaign-Urbana as an instructor in dairy processing and for three years as a quality assurance supervisor with McArthur Dairy in Miami. Colleagues wished him well at a retirement luncheon and cake-and-ice cream farewell in the IFSH cafeteria, presenting him with an official Cheesehead hat, a seven-day clock and Elton Brown's book, The Thermal Dynamic of Cooking. We'll miss you, Joe! 


Above right: Dr. Joe Schlesser takes a rest from the retirement party festivities (sprained hamstring!) to pose with FDA CFSAN IFSH colleague Diana Stewart.


On May 9, FDA CFSAN IFSH and IIT IFSH staffers completed their fourth year of participation in the National Employee Health & Fitness Day walking event. A strong turnout of 28 walkers took to the roads, selecting either the one-mile or three-mile loop walks to promote health and fitness. Congratulations to all!  

2012 FDA Fitness Walk  


Press & Publications      

 2012 March Video 

The Fresh Facts Blog has posted video presentations from the Freeborn & Peters, LLP-sponsored March 2012 food safety event, "Opportunities-and Challenges-of Expanding Food Imports to the United States." Follow this link to watch IIT IFSH's Robert Brackett, a featured speaker at the event, discuss a changing and challenging food industry, citing trends in the food environment, new standards and sweeping changes associated with the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), and global food safety issues.  



Register by May 30 for IIT IFSH Summer Semester 2012


IIT's Summer 2012 semester begins June 4, 2012 and ends July 28, 2012. The following IFSH Graduate Program courses will be held at IIT's Main Campus. Registration for these courses closes May 30. Please visit our website for full course descriptions, links and registration details.


Download the 2012-13 Food Processing Specialist Certificate Program Course Schedule


An August 2012-April 2013 course schedule for IIT IFSH's Food Processing Specialist Certificate program is now available for download online on the IFSH website. Students must complete the application process by July 30. Application forms also are available online in downloadable format.


For more information on IIT IFSH educational programs, please contact Renee McBrien, Manager, Education and Outreach, at 708.563.8287.
Illinois Institute of Technology's (IIT) Institute for Food Safety and Health (IFSH) is a one-of-a-kind applied food science research institute that provides stakeholders in government, industry and academia the opportunity to develop and exchange knowledge and expertise to address key issues in food safety, food defense and nutrition. Located at IIT's Moffett Campus in Bedford Park, IL, IFSH is also home to the FDA CFSAN Division of Food Processing Science and Technology. For more, visit