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African Americans in Consumer Product Safety: Thomas Hill Moore

Thomas Hill Moore

Thomas Hill Moore“It has been my privilege to work with an extremely dedicated CPSC staff.”

Considered a fierce advocate for the consumer and CPSC staff, Commissioner Thomas Hill Moore was the longest serving Commissioner in agency history. Moore served on the Commission from 1995 until 2011. During his tenure, he also served as Acting Chairman on two occasions. His dedication, especially to the safety of children, was recognized by both sides of the aisle, as he was appointed by a Democratic President and reappointed by a Republican President.

Before coming to the CPSC, Moore served as Legislative Counsel to U.S. Senator John Breaux and was the principle adviser on commerce, finance and trade policy matters. He also served as the dean at the University of Florida College of Law, which is where he received his Juris Doctor degree in 1974.

Moore is remembered as an authentic and passionate man whose leadership and legislative proposal was instrumental to Congress passing the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA).  SaferProducts.gov, CPSC’s modern testing and evaluation center, and increased import surveillance were all supported by Commissioner Moore and in effect today.  His commitment to consumer safety and to CPSC continues to be admired and respected.

Thank you, Mr. Thomas Hill Moore.

This is the seventh of seven profiles of African Americans who made significant contributions to product safety in the United States.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2015/02/african-americans-in-consumer-product-safety-thomas-hill-moore/

African Americans in Consumer Product Safety: Jacqueline Jones-Smith

Jacqueline Jones-Smith

Jacqueline Jones-Smith“I will devote my full energies to ensuring that the Commission enforces the product safety laws…”

Mrs. Jacqueline Jones-Smith was confirmed by the Senate in 1989 to serve as the sixth Chairman in the Commission’s history. During her tenure, she led an effort to ban infant cushions involved in the deaths of several children. Jones-Smith directed agency staff to work closely with industry on voluntary standards for chain saws and hair dryers and nearly 60 million products that were defective or violated a standard were recalled during her tenure.

Before taking over as Chairman, Jones-Smith was an attorney with the Federal Election Commission, doing litigation before the U.S. appellate courts. Jones-Smith is a disciplined leader who made it her mission to contribute her efforts to the safety of all consumers.

Thank you, Mrs. Jacqueline Jones-Smith. 

This is the sixth of seven profiles of African Americans who made significant contributions to product safety in the United States.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2015/02/african-americans-in-consumer-product-safety-jacqueline-jones-smith/

African Americans in Consumer Product Safety: Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong

Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong

Judge Saundra Brown ArmstrongThe breadth of Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong’s accomplishments exemplified her ability to break down racial and gender barriers. In 1970, she became the first African American policewoman, and one of only seven policewomen in the Oakland, California police department. Three years later, she advocated for and was instrumental in the creation of equal hiring practices for women in the City of Oakland Police Department.

From 1983 to 1986, Armstrong held a number of positions at CPSC, including Commissioner and Vice-Chairman. Armstrong’s intellect, drive and attitude made her a change agent during her short time on the Commission. Her focus was on federal policy over consumer products, as well as the relationship between federal policymakers and state and local officials and standards development organizations.

“My sincere hope is that I can help foster a greater cooperative working relationship between the CPSC and the numerous state and local agencies…secondly, I would hope to foster and further encourage the voluntary standard process in a joint and non-adversarial way…”

-November 21, 1983

On June 21, 1991, President George H.W. Bush appointed Armstrong to the United States District Court. With her appointment, she became the first African American woman to serve on the United States District Court for the Northern District of California.

Armstrong is remembered by former Commission members as having a spirit of service and using her legal, law enforcement and product safety experiences to fight for equality.

Thank you, Judge Saundra Brown Armstrong.

This is the fifth of seven profiles of African Americans who made significant contributions to product safety in the United States.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2015/02/african-americans-in-consumer-product-safety-judge-saundra-brown-armstrong/

African Americans in Consumer Product Safety: Edith Barksdale Sloan

Edith Barksdale Sloan: It Is Her Business to Protect Consumers 

Edith Barksdale SloanMrs. Edith Barksdale Sloan was described as very sweet, articulate and frank when it came to the work that needed to be done on behalf of consumers. “We’re here in the business to protect consumers from unreasonable risk of injury,” Sloan said in her statements upon election as Vice-Chairman in 1978.

Edith-Consumer-Education-SeBefore her appointment by President Jimmy Carter to the Commission, Sloan led the D.C. Office of Consumer Protection in its efforts to recall pajamas treated with a flame-retardant chemical, Tris, a suspected carcinogen. Her prior experience in regulating Tris was vital to CPSC as the Commission banned it in 1977 as a treatment in children’s sleepwear.

Children’s pajamas and flame retardants were not her only areas of concern. In a CPSC statement in 1978, Sloan said that she was “especially concerned about injuries caused when children play upon public playground equipment in the parks and school yards of this country.”

After her tenure with CPSC, she spent time with the Washington, D.C.  Law Firm of Fortas, Prokop and Hardman. She also served on the D.C. Consumer Claims Arbitration Board during the 1980s.

As a humanitarian, activist and lawyer, Sloan used her abilities and experience to educate and protect consumers from chemicals, flammable children’s clothing and other child dangers in and around the home.

Thank you, Mrs. Edith Barksdale Sloan.

This is the fourth of seven profiles of African Americans who made significant contributions to product safety in the United States.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2015/02/african-americans-in-consumer-product-safety-edith-barksdale-sloan/

African Americans in Consumer Product Safety: Thaddeus Garrett Jr.

Thaddeus Garrett Jr.

Thaddeus Garrett Jr.(Corbis Images: Thaddeus Garrett showing Shirley Chisholm a report, 1971)

A genuine man with a love for God and public service, Reverend, Dr. Thaddeus Garrett Jr., served as a Commissioner and Vice-Chairman from 1976 to 1977. Although his time on the Commission was short, his positivity and hard work helped to keep the Commission together.

Before his appointment to CPSC, Garrett was a Special Assistant to former Vice President Nelson Rockefeller and Chief Assistant to former Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm. Once his role at CPSC ended, he was elected to the State Board of Education of Ohio where he served seven years, resigning to become Commissioner on the Ohio Civil Rights Commission.

In addition to his positions in product safety and international trade, Garrett was an ordained minister who served his lifelong church, Wesley Temple A.M.E. Zion Church in Akron, Ohio, as the associate minister. He was also named one of the 100 Most Influential Black Americans by Ebony Magazine of 1981.

Garrett loved working at CPSC and serving the people of Ohio.  Throughout his distinguished career, he was a genuine and faithful public servant.

Thank you, Dr. Thaddeus Garrett Jr.

This is the third of seven profiles of African Americans who made significant contributions to product safety in the United States.

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This address for this post is: http://www.cpsc.gov/onsafety/2015/02/african-americans-in-consumer-product-safety-thaddeus-garrett-jr/