Michael F. Jacobson, Ph.D., is a co-founder and long-time Executive Directorof CSPI, now serving as a Senior Scientist. Jacobson has written numerous books and reports, including Salt Wars: The Battle Over the Biggest Killer in the American Diet; Eater’s Digest: the Consumer’s Fact Book of Food Additives, Nutrition Scoreboard; Salt: the Forgotten Killer; and Liquid Candy: How Soft Drinks are Harming Americans’ Health. He has also been honored with such awards as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Hero Award (2010), the American Public Health Association’s David P. Rall award for advocacy in public health (2011), and the Food Marketing Institute’s Esther Peterson Consumer Service Award (1992). His Ph.D. in microbiology is from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Gregory Jaffe is the Director of the Project on Biotechnology for CSPI. Jaffe came to CSPI after serving as a Trial Attorney for the U.S. Department of Justice's Environmental and Natural Resources Division and as Senior Counsel with the U.S. EPA, Air Enforcement Division. He is a recognized international expert on agricultural biotechnology and biosafety and works on biosafety regulatory issues in the U.S. and throughout the world. He was a member of the Secretary of Agriculture's Advisory Committee on Agricultural Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture from 2003-2008 and was reappointed to a new term in 2011. He was also a member of FDA’s Veterinary Medicine Advisory Committee from 2004-2008. In addition, he provides biosafety expertise to the International Food Policy Research Institute and Cornell University’s Alliance for Science. Jaffe earned his BA with High Honors from Wesleyan University in Biology and Government and then received a law degree from Harvard Law School.
Taylor James, Strategic Communications Associate, is a member of the policy communications team where she works to amplify CSPI’s Food and Nutrition Policy efforts. She has a wide range of marketing and communications experience, working with Fortune 100 companies and global non-profits across an array of projects. Taylor has a penchant for finding out-of-the-box solutions that stems from her creative agency background.
Taylor serves as the volunteer Marketing and Communications Director and on the board of directors of Soul Trak Outdoors, an outdoor adventure and education non-profit that focused on Diversity, Inclusion, Equity, and Access. She earned her B.S. in Sport Management and Business Administration from Towson University.
Joelle Johnson is a Campaign Manager with a specific focus on the retail environment, working on policy and advocacy efforts that support healthy eating. Prior to joining CSPI she was a program manager for the Food Literacy Project, a farm-based food system education organization in Louisville, KY, and a local food procurement coordinator for DC Central Kitchen. Joelle is a graduate of Johns Hopkins School of Public Health where she earned her Master in Public Health with a concentration in food and nutrition.
As Regulatory Counsel, Jensen Jose focuses on supporting CSPI’s efforts to strengthen the oversight of food additives and dietary supplements. Jensen served as regulatory policy specialist and staff liaison for the American Optometric Association. He also served as associate counsel for the US Department of Veterans Affairs, and a research associate for the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Jensen earned his JD from the University of Maryland law school, and a BS in Biology and BA in Political Science from the University of Washington.
As the Food Safety Campaign Manager, James Kincheloe looks for opportunities to advocate for science driven food safety reform from farm to fork. His work prior to joining CSPI spanned the spectrum of the food production system and included production animal medicine as a dairy veterinarian, international agriculture development, and infectious disease research and response system analysis. He earned a BS in Animal Science and a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine at the University of California, Davis, and a Master of Public Health at the University of Minnesota. He also completed a residency in public health at the University of Minnesota.
Lea Kriesberg is a Community Organizer for the Policy team. She previously served as an organizer for a youth-centered health policy campaign program for more than 600 students across Virginia. As an intern with CSPI in 2019, she assisted with research and outreach for the Healthy Retail initiative. She received her B.A. in Public Health from American University.
Rachel Leader is a Community Organizer at CSPI. Previously, she received a Fulbright grant to teach English in Changhua, Taiwan. Rachel has worked for the National Alliance on Mental Illness – Central Texas as a public policy intern, tracking pertinent policies and building relations with advocacy groups. She received her B.A. in Sociology from St. Edward’s University in Austin, Texas.
Lisa Y. Lefferts is Senior Scientist at CSPI and focuses primarily on food additives. Prior to CSPI, her work consulting for non-profit organizations took her around the world, conducting trainings, representing Consumers International at Codex Alimentarius, and participating in FAO/WHO expert consultations. She has done extensive work assessing "green" label claims on various products. She received her B.A. from Oberlin College in Biology and Environmental Studies, and a Masters of Science in Public Health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Bonnie Liebman, CSPI's Director of Nutrition, has been with the organization since 1977. She holds an M.S. in nutritional sciences from Cornell University. Liebman has been the key link in formulating CSPI's policies on diet and health. She provides the scientific input on many of the organization's administrative petitions and legislative proposals. Liebman is the author of numerous articles on diet and cancer, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and other illnesses for Nutrition Action Healthletter and a co-author of Salt: The Brand Name Guide to Sodium. She also served on the advisory committees that issued the American Cancer Society's 2001 and 1996 Guidelines on Nutrition and Physical Activity for Cancer Prevention.