Smart discussion about toxics policy reform

About EWG’s Kid-Safe Chemicals Interactive Magazine

Environmental Working Group has established the Kid-Safe Chemicals Interactive Magazine as an online science information and discussion forum to foster an exchange of ideas for reforming the nation’s toxic chemicals policies. The site will feature articles by scientists, lawmakers, regulators, industry officials, community activists, policy analysts, journalists and others interested in environmental health issues.

A major focus of the forum will be the emerging debate over overhauling the Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976 (TSCA). This site is aimed at stimulating conversation about the Safe Chemicals Act, a measure designed to supplant TSCA and expected to be introduced later this year, and other legislative proposals. As well, commentators will discuss alternative approaches to toxics reform.

Environmental Working Group is a research organization based in Washington, D.C. that uses the power of information to protect human health and the environment.


Ken Cook, President
Ken co-founded EWG in 1993. He is the author of dozens of articles, opinion pieces and reports on environmental, public health and agricultural topics. Cook earned B.A., B.S., and M.S. degrees from the University of Missouri-Columbia. He is married to Deb Callahan and lives in Washington, D.C.

Nils Bruzelius, Executive Editor
Nils Bruzelius was been a journalist for more than 40 years, and for most of that time was involved in reporting or editing coverage of medicine, science, and environmental issues. Until he joined EWG he was Science Editor at The Washington Post. Before that he spent 28 years at The Boston Globe, where he worked as a medical reporter, state political editor, specialists editor, Health/Science editor and finally Foreign Editor. He also spent two years with the investigative Spotlight Team, where he shared a Pulitzer Prize for a 10-part series exposing mismanagement and corruption in Boston’s public transit system. He also had a one-year stint as an editor on the science desk of National Public Radio. Born in Stockholm, Sweden, Nils lived there and in Brazil until high school age, when his family settled in Connecticut. He earned a B.A. in history at Amherst College. He lives with his wife, Lynne Weil, on Capitol Hill. An avid sailor, he has completed two trans-Atlantic crossings and numerous shorter ocean passages. His other enthusiasms include tennis, cross-country skiing, baroque choral music and reading.

Alex Formuzis, Director of Communications
Alex came to EWG after 8 years as a senior aide to three members of the United States Senate. Prior to his time on Capitol Hill he was in the public affairs shop of the Clinton Treasury Department, in the policy shop for the NGO Independent Sector, and worked on state and local campaigns in Washington State. Alex was born and raised in the Northwest, spending his youth sailing, hiking and skiing from Southern California to British Columbia. Alex graduated from the University of Montana in 1995 with a B.A. in political science.

Jane Houlihan, Senior Vice President for Research
Jane directs EWG’s research operations, specializing in toxics and health research. She serves as a spokesperson on environmental health in the national media and at conferences across the country. Jane holds Masters and Bachelors degrees in Civil Engineering from Georgia Tech and postgraduate studies at Stanford. Before joining she EWG practiced environmental engineering at national research and consulting organizations.

Richard Wiles, Sr. VP for Policy and Communications
Richard Wiles co-founded Environmental Working Group with Ken Cook and now directs EWG’s programs. He is a nationally recognized expert on children’s environmental health, toxic substances and pesticide policies. Wiles is a former senior staff officer at the National Academy of Sciences’ Board on Agriculture where he directed path-breaking studies on pesticide policy and organic agriculture. Two of these studies — Regulating Pesticides: The Delaney Paradox and Pesticides in the Diets of Infants and Children — formed the basis for the landmark federal Food Quality Protection Act of 1996, a sweeping reform of federal pesticide regulation. The act marked the first U.S. statutory mandate for explicit protection of infants and children from environmental contaminants. Wiles’ third report, Alternative Agriculture, was instrumental in creating momentum for federal organic food standards. Wiles holds a B.A. Degree from Colgate University and an M.A. degree from California State University at Sacramento. He is an avid skier and sailor.

Dave Andrews, PH.D., Senior Scientist
David is using his chemistry background to investigate environmental health issues. He holds a B.A. in chemistry from Wesleyan University and a Ph.D. in chemistry from Northwestern University, and has authored over 10 peer-reviewed publications and currently has 1 patent pending on quantum interference devices. He lives in Alexandria with his wife Lena and son Wyeth, who likes to jump. David enjoys designing and building audio equipment, traveling, camping, fishing, volunteering, outdoor sports, swimming, and landscape painting.

Don Carr, Press Secretary
Don comes to EWG from the Democratic National Committee where he served as a Communications Director in his home state of South Dakota. Previously, he worked in the SD state legislature and on former Senate Leader Tom Daschle’s 2004 reelection campaign. Don enjoys fly-fishing, home-brewing, and searching for additional hyphenated pastimes.

Lisa Frack, Social Media Manager
Lisa connects with parents online to share EWG’s research and activism opportunities on kid safe products, environmental health and toxics. She holds a BA in history from Princeton and a Masters in Public Policy from Duke. Lisa’s two young children inspire her to make choosing safe products a simple task for even the busiest of parents. When offline, Lisa enjoys backyard farming, the amazingly beautiful Oregon coast, and reading book after book (after book) with her kids.

Kari Hamerschlag, Senior Analyst
Kari is working on agriculture and climate change. Kari started her career twenty years ago as an organizer, researcher and advocate for socially and environmentally sound development policy, mostly focused in Latin America. For the past eight years, she has worked for a number of non-profits on fair trade, sustainable food and ag policy issues. Kari has a Masters from UC Berkeley in Latin American Studies and City and Regional Planning. She is an avid telemark skier and loves hiking with her dog Shoki in the East Bay Hills.

Olga Naidenko, Ph.D., Senior Scientist
Olga holds a PhD degree in immunology from the UCLA Molecular Biology Institute. Prior to joining EWG, she worked in Los Angeles, San Diego, and St. Louis, publishing 30 peer-reviewed papers in molecular and structural immunology. At EWG, Olga focuses on human health effects of chemical pollution. Olga enjoys yoga, dance, and learning new languages.

Amy Rosenthal, Individual Donor Fundraising & Outreach Manager. Amy attended Stanford University, graduating with a BA in History. After working as a paralegal, an interest in agriculture policy led her to the Environmental Working Group. She also likes to cook, eat and play outside.

Elaine Shannon, Editor-in-Chief
Elaine is a former correspondent for TIME and Newsweek magazines, a Neiman fellow at Harvard University and author of three books about terrorism, espionage and the global drug trade. She and husband Dan Morgan, a Washington Post correspondent, hike, ski, kayak and serve as pit crew for son Shannon Morgan, a Colorado College environmental science student and cycle racer.

Rebecca Sutton, Ph.D., Senior Scientist
Rebecca is an environmental chemist and a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley. Prior to joining EWG, her research focused on computational studies of contaminant fate and transport, and soil carbon storage to moderate global warming. She has authored 10 publications in peer-reviewed journals.