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I Am ORA Profile: Eugene Song

Eugene Song, program analyst, Office of Regulatory Science (ORS), Office of Regulatory Affairs (ORA), Food and Drug Administration (FDA)

Eugene Song

My name is Eugene Song, a program analyst in the Office of Regulatory Science (ORS). One of ORS’s main responsibilities is to analyze samples of FDA-regulated products to make sure that they are safe. My job is to utilize performance metrics to evaluate how samples are analyzed and ORS's effectiveness and efficiency in determining whether a product meets regulatory standards. Additionally, using these metrics, I monitor and evaluate laboratory performance and identify opportunities for improvement in laboratory operations.

My team created the Laboratory Servicing Table Dashboard, an internal tool used to regulate the flow of routine samples delivered to ORS’s 13 laboratories across the country and Puerto Rico. Consumer safety officers use the dashboard to view the current lab capacity to determine where best to send samples for analysis. The dashboard allows sample collectors to evaluate work capacity for all available servicing laboratories as opposed to a single laboratory. The dashboard also helps us to delegate samples and normalize the flow of samples to ORA laboratories, enhance our efficiency, and improve customer satisfaction with this process. By improving how samples are sent to our laboratories, we've strengthened the agency's ability to determine the compliance of FDA-regulated products and remove dangerous products from the market.

I care deeply about public health. I spent two years living abroad in rural southeast Uganda. Initially, I was there for a three-month research project for my undergraduate thesis in Global Poverty and Practice. However, I wanted to increase access to basic healthcare to the people of that area. I eventually took time off from school to stay and execute that mission. While there, I was part of a team that created a pilot program called the "Health Villages Initiative," which established an infrastructure for access to basic health needs such as clean water, HIV testing, transportation to and from hospitals, and malaria prevention. The program is now a model for all villages.

Upon graduating from college, I wanted to return to Uganda to continue my work; however, I realized that there were domestic public health issues I wanted to work on before returning to international development work. I knew that the best way to become involved was through civil service, and I was accepted into the Presidential Management Fellowship Program in 2014. Presidential Management Fellows endure a rigorous selection process that gauges a candidate’s adaptability, integrity, collaborative skills, and drive for public service. My dedication and commitment to public service led to my selection and that sense of service and desire to advance public health safety still drives me today.

I am Eugene Song, and #IAmORA.

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