December 10, 2018

Media Contact: David B. Schmidt, Executive Director, AOAC INTERNATIONAL,, (301) 924-7077 (worldwide) or (800) 379-2622 (toll free North America)

AOAC Appoints FDA Food Safety Scientist as New Deputy Executive Director and Chief Science Officer

  Rockville, MD - AOAC INTERNATIONAL is pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Palmer Orlandi as deputy executive director and chief science officer, effective December 17, 2018. He brings to the position a distinguished public health service career with the federal government.

“We are eager to work with Dr. Orlandi to help drive the development and execution of our science strategy to capitalize on the opportunities in front of us,” said AOAC Executive Director David B. Schmidt. “He will strengthen our ability to solve public health dilemmas and make an impact in the analytical communities. With Palmer’s impressive background and extensive knowledge in global food safety, we are confident that he will help lead and advance AOAC’s mission further as we enter our next chapter.”

Orlandi has served more than 20 years at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, most recently as CSO and research director in the Office of Food and Veterinary Medicine, where he provided strategic direction and leadership for all FDA FVM science and research programs. He has also been an officer in the Commission Corps of the Public Health Service since 1991, earning the rank of Rear Admiral and Assistant Surgeon General in 2017.

Orlandi has impressive credentials and qualifications, along with an extensive background in government relations, food science and safety, regulatory affairs, and public health in the federal government. He has developed rapid molecular detection methods for emerging food- and waterborne microbial pathogens for regulatory and surveillance applications and collaborative analytical methods programs for the FDA field laboratories and the Food Emergency Response Network (FERN). Orlandi holds a B.A. in Chemistry from Lafayette College and a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from the University of Kentucky. He is an ROTC Distinguished Military Graduate.

“I’m very excited to take on this new and challenging role,” Orlandi said. “AOAC INTERNATIONAL has a longstanding reputation as a leader among the analytical sciences community for its work in developing and harmonizing performance standards and ensuring that testing methods meet the needs of industry, private laboratories, and regulatory partners alike. It’s a privilege to now be a part of this organization. The food safety and food defense community will continue to face many analytical challenges, some already known, some on the horizon, others unforeseen. It’s my hope that with the help of the excellent scientific staff already in place, and with the guidance of the board of directors, I can help the organization meet those challenges.”

As deputy executive director and CSO, Orlandi will oversee three primary areas at AOAC INTERNATIONAL: the AOAC Research Institute, Standards Development, and Proficiency Testing. In addition, he will be handling business development responsibilities, including developing strategic partnerships, with the goal of advancing voluntary consensus standards setting activities and strengthening international relations.



AOAC INTERNATIONAL ( is a globally recognized, 501(c)(3), independent, third party, not-for-profit association and voluntary consensus standards developing organization founded in 1884. When analytical needs arise within a community or industry, AOAC INTERNATIONAL is the forum for finding appropriate science-based solutions through the development of microbiological and chemical standards. AOAC standards are used globally to promote trade and to facilitate public health and safety.