WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) Chairman Inez Tenenbaum announced today that Matt Howsare is leaving his position as Chief of Staff and Chief Counsel to the Chairman to return to private practice. Chairman Tenenbaum also announced that effective May 29, 2013, current Deputy Chief of Staff and Senior Counsel to the Chairman Elliot Kaye will succeed Mr. Howsare as Chief of Staff and Chief Counsel.
As a principal legal and policy advisor to the Chairman from the beginning of her tenure at CPSC, Mr. Howsare was instrumental in establishing a modern agenda and global vision for the agency. He had an executive role in implementing the Chairman’s product safety priorities, developing the agency’s regulatory agenda, and working with key agency stakeholders to advance consumer safety. He traveled across the United States, Canada, Europe, and China assisting the Chairman and CPSC staff in forging successful domestic and international regulatory partnerships and promoting awareness of U.S. product safety requirements among domestic and international manufacturers, retailers, importers, testing labs, and trade associations.
Mr. Howsare played a leadership role in the implementation of the rules, regulations, and policies relating to the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008, landmark legislation that revitalized the CPSC. He provided legal and policy counsel to the Chairman on the implementation of third-party testing of children’s products; the new civil penalty rules; the creation of the SaferProducts.gov public database; the new limits on lead and phthalates; the requirements for certificates of compliance and laboratory accreditation; the new standards for durable infant nursery products; high profile compliance and enforcement actions; and many other significant agency milestones.
“From the moment of my confirmation and throughout my tenure as Chairman, Matt has been my most trusted counsel and confidant,” said CPSC Chairman Inez Tenenbaum. “Matt has been steadfast in his commitment to helping me lead the agency and serve American consumers. Children and families are safer today and businesses around the world have a clearer understanding of the safety rules they must follow, thanks to Matt’s tireless efforts.”
Mr. Howsare will be returning to private practice as Counsel in the Washington, D.C. office of the law firm Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C.
Prior to joining CPSC, Mr. Howsare worked as an attorney at the law firm of Nelson, Mullins, Riley & Scarborough in Columbia, South Carolina, where he practiced in the area of consumer product safety, as well as general, appellate, class action and products liability litigation.
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of injury or death associated with the use of thousands of types of consumer products under the agency’s jurisdiction. Deaths, injuries, and property damage from consumer product incidents cost the nation more than $1 trillion annually. CPSC is committed to protecting consumers and families from products that pose a fire, electrical, chemical or mechanical hazard. CPSC's work to help ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters and household chemicals -– contributed to a decline in the rate of deaths and injuries associated with consumer products over the past 40 years.
Federal law bars any person from selling products subject to a publicly-announced voluntary recall by a manufacturer or a mandatory recall ordered by the Commission.
To report a dangerous product or a product-related injury go online to www.SaferProducts.gov or call CPSC's Hotline at 800-638-2772 or teletypewriter at 301-595-7054 for the hearing impaired. Consumers can obtain news release and recall information at www.cpsc.gov, on Twitter @USCPSC or by subscribing to CPSC's free e-mail newsletters.
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