Regulatory Advocacy / Food Safety Consultant
Regulatory Advocacy / Food Safety Consultant
As Guardians of Regulatory Compliance, Praesidio Consulting will utilize our extensive food production and governmental enforcement experience to interpret, apply, and sustain compliance with, ever-changing state and federal regulations. We provide food safety confidence, quality assurance excellence, and peace of mind, to food industry producers as they navigate, manage, and comply with, consumer safety protocols.
Rich grew up in a family of farmers and ranchers in rural Nebraska. He started his industry experience as a teenager working in his father's custom slaughter and processing plant learning first-hand both the skills and struggles of meat production, and the challenges of sustaining a family-owned operation. After high school, he enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps where he served proudly during Operations Desert Shield / Desert Storm in the Persian Gulf and then during Operation Restore Hope in Somalia. Following his military service, he joined the USDA Food Safety Inspection Service in 1993 as a GS-5 kill floor inspector working in slaughter and processing facilities for beef, pork, and poultry all over the greater Los Angeles area. His was responsible for the oversight of HACCP implementation, adherence to SSOP and labeling regulations, and assuring the humane handling of livestock for slaughter. His career advanced when he moved to Northern California where he served as an Enforcement Investigations and Analysis Officer, and Frontline Supervisor until 2008 when a promotion moved his family to Colorado. Rich worked as an Investigator, and then Supervisory Investigator, within the Office of Investigation, Enforcement and Audit. During his tenure with OIEA he both conducted, and supervised, numerous surveillance activities, enforcement actions, recall actions, criminal investigations, and criminal prosecutions for the western region.
In 2015 he promoted to Deputy District Manager for the Denver District, managing the in-plant inspection activities conducted by a multi-disciplinary team. His team carried out regulatory inspection activities in approximately 300 meat, poultry, and egg, inspection establishments across 10 continental western states, Alaska, Hawaii, and the US territories of Guam, American Samoa, and the Mariana Islands. During a temporary assignment to FSIS’ Office of Public Health and Science Rich worked closely with epidemiologists from USDA and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on a complex Salmonella illness outbreak. Upon the successful conclusion of the investigation, and subsequent recall, he was recognized by the CDC with an honor award for his performance in leveraging a national salmonella outbreak investigation to improve poultry safety in the United States.
After working in Regulatory Enforcement for over 25 years with FSIS Rich retired in 2019 and, along with his wife Susan, established Praesidio Consulting to assist producers in the protein industry. Rich has co-authored peer reviewed scientific articles, and has been published by the scientific journal, Foodborne Pathogens and Disease, regarding a salmonella foodborne illness investigation. You can see the full article in the link below at the bottom of this page.
With his first-hand personal industry experience, his extensive technical expertise and mastery of food safety regulations gained during his tenure with the USDA, and his on-going regulatory advocacy with industry producers of all size and scope Rich consistently provides our clients with an unparalleled level of regulatory knowledge and expertise.
Susan's professional career began in the world of banking and finance in Southern California. Experience in commercial banking, and management in the private label credit card industry led to a tenure with a Trust Services Bank specializing in retirement pension investment accounts. She was responsible for the management, and fiduciary regulation, of the trust investment assets for over 250 employee benefit accounts with a combined value of $360M.
When Rich's burgeoning career relocated the family to Northern California Susan worked in conjunction with the local Police Department to develop, and manage, a Community Response Team for victims of Domestic Violence. She marketed and recruited for the upstart program, administered the federal funding grant, developed the policies and procedures, and trained over 30 volunteers whom she managed and developed. This project led to her employment as a Crime Analyst for the department, and then to her decision to become a sworn officer. During her tenure as a Law Enforcement Officer, she served as a School Resource Officer, Sexual Assault Investigator, Field Training Officer, Gang Information Officer; and was certified by the area courts as an Expert Witness for both Domestic Violence, and Gang Crime prosecutions. When Rich's USDA career moved them to Colorado, Susan transferred her POST certification to Colorado and continued her service in law enforcement until 2012 when she transferred to the private sector to manage private corporate and judicial facility security. In 2019, following Rich's retirement from federal service, they established Praesidio Consulting to work with meat industry producers as advocates and regulatory experts.
Susan is also HACCP certified and has extensive experience in project management and organizational administration. Her education, training, and experiences in the financial, legal, and corporate industries provide a solid, diversified, business management foundation to our company. Susan's public service, investigatory, and report writing skills partner seamlessly with Rich's extensive technical expertise in the food safety industry to make Praesidio Consulting your one-stop shop for regulatory compliance management.
Praesidio Consulting endeavors to provide proactive, comprehensive, food safety consultation services that will bridge the gap, assure regulatory compliance, and promote a cooperative partnership between food industry professionals, and their governing agencies, to support the shared goal of safe and wholesome products in commerce.