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ABC News hires CDC bigwig Richard Besser

ABC News this morning announced it has hired the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Dr. Richard Besser as its senior health and medical editor.

Besser, who led CDC’s response to the H1N1 influenza outbreak earlier this year, will be leaving the agency in mid August to join ABC News. He will begin contributing to ABC News in September.

He is acting director at the CDC.

Here’s his bio from the press release:

Dr. Richard Besser, M.D. currently serves as director of the Coordinating Office for Terrorism Preparedness and Emergency Response at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In that role, he is responsible for all of the CDC’s public health emergency preparedness and emergency response activities. He also served as Acting Director for the CDC and Acting Administrator for the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry from January to June 2009, during which time he led the CDC’s response to the H1N1 influenza outbreak.

Here is a sample of his TV work during the swine flu outbreak on CNN:

Our CDC reporter Shelia Poole has a story online about it.

2 comments Add your comment

Turd Ferguson

July 30th, 2009
11:14 am

Just another news hack like the miserable little exhibitionist troll, katy kouric

[...] His calm, poised TV appearances gave journos great pause, since public health officials are generally not known for their clarity of message or their telegenics. Besser has been with the Public Health Service since 1991, but not surprisingly, has television reporting experience going way back. [...]