WASHINGTON, D.C.-- Elliot F. Kaye has been sworn in as the 10th Chairman of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). President Barack Obama nominated Mr. Kaye on March 31, 2014, and he was confirmed by the U.S. Senate on July 28, 2014, to a term that expires in October 2020.
“I am deeply honored to have been selected by President Obama to lead the Consumer Product Safety Commission,” said Chairman Kaye. “As a consumer, a policy maker and especially as a father, I have a clear vision of the direction that CPSC needs to take, together with willing partners, to provide consumers with the protections they expect and deserve.”
Mr. Kaye identified three major areas of focus that will advance his collaborative leadership approach. “First, we will further harness the experience and expertise of CPSC staff and safety experts in the private sector to achieve more safety advancements for the American public. CPSC will attempt to work even more closely with industry and voluntary standards organizations to develop standards for products not covered by any standard and enhance standards that have not kept pace with advances in safety technology. Strong safety standards save lives, so I will direct agency staff to seek additional opportunities to work cooperatively with industry, consumer groups, and foreign regulators to create the strongest standards possible,” he stated.
Second, Mr. Kaye will continue to prioritize brain safety in youth sports during his tenure. “We will build upon the progress made during the past three years to accelerate the necessary culture change around brain safety in youth sports,” he stated. “Sports participation can be such a healthy part of a child’s development, but it requires parents, coaches and players to properly respect and protect children’s brains, regardless of the sport.”
Third, Mr. Kaye is committed to strengthening CPSC’s line of defense at U.S. ports to keep dangerous imports out of the hands of unsuspecting consumers. He stated, “CPSC works closely with foreign regulators, manufacturers, and U.S. Customs and Border Protection to emphasize that goods intended for our marketplace must meet U.S. safety standards. If there is a failure in the supply chain, we want to catch the dangerous toy, cigarette lighter, firework, or clothing before it reaches stores shelves. We will continue to work with the Congress, federal agencies, and the trade to greatly expand that number of shipments that CPSC investigators inspect at the ports. Through our risk management system, we will detect and detain more violative and dangerous products by using data, advanced technologies, and well-trained staff. Importantly, we will also seek to increase the flow of compliant goods, increase confidence in the marketplace, and increase consumer safety.”
Chairman Kaye will be transparent and accessible in directing the operations of the agency, and he will expand our use of open data and social media to connect with and empower consumers and businesses.
Mr. Kaye served as CPSC’s Executive Director from 2013 until his confirmation as Chairman. Previously at CPSC, Mr. Kaye served as Chief of Staff and Chief Counsel to former Chairman Inez Moore Tenenbaum in 2013, Deputy Chief of Staff and Senior Counsel to the Chairman from 2012 to 2013, and as Senior Counsel to the Chairman from 2010 to 2012. He has been the driving force behind many of the agency’s most successful initiatives in recent years, including efforts aimed at addressing the chemical burn hazard to young children from the ingestion of coin cell batteries.
Mr. Kaye is widely recognized for having played a key role in coalescing the leading organizations and companies in American football around a common goal of creating a culture change to reduce the risk of brain injuries in youth football.
From 2007 to 2010, he was an attorney at Hogan Lovells. Prior to this, he was an attorney at Cooley Godward Kronish LLP and a Judicial Clerk for the Honorable Sterling Johnson, Jr. of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York. Mr. Kaye has served as Chief of Staff and Legislative Director for U.S. Representative John Tierney, Chief of Staff and Communications Director for U.S. Representative Pat Danner, and held a number of positions with U.S. Representative Earl Hutto.
He received a B.S.J. from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and a J.D. from New York University School of Law.
Mr. Kaye is married to Kanae Watanabe-Kaye and has two sons.
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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