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So, a Lawyer Walks into a School of Public Health…

The science of food and drug safety is no joking matter for Attorney Kevin Fain whose legal career is on hold as he studies at the Bloomberg School.


Kevin FainIn his 15 years as an attorney with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Kevin Fain analyzed the legality of proposed food and drug safety regulations and policies.

Over time, he became increasingly interested in the science that underpinned much of the agency’s work.

“I reached a point in my career where I wanted to learn more about epidemiology, biostatistics and public health policy,” says Fain, who decided in 2010 to act on his scientific leanings by enrolling in the school’s year-long MPH program.

And although it wasn’t in his original plans, Fain is now pursuing a doctor of public health degree (DrPH) in Epidemiology. Already, his work is attracting some high-profile attention.

JAMA’s July 9 news website features Fain’s research on industry compliance with laws that mandate additional safety studies on FDA-approved drugs.

Fain has also worked with the Center for a Livable Future, examining drug safety in animal food production and analyzing proposed regulations to tighten produce safety standards.

He expects to finish his DrPH degree next year, and sees research, teaching and advocacy as career possibilities.

“It’s opened up new ways of thinking for me,” Fain says of his time at the Bloomberg School. “I can look at drug safety studies now with a new perspective and methods for assessing the evidence.”