J’can makes history at the US Public Health Service | News

On Friday, June 7, a promotion ceremony took place at the Food and Drug Administration in Silver Spring, Maryland, during which Jamaican-born Dr. Raquel Peat was elevated to the rank of rear admiral (RDML O-7), effective May 1. .

The United States Senate of the Louisiana Legislature also recognized the promotion by passing a resolution – Senate Resolution No. 172 – signed by Senator Regina Ashford Barrow.

RDML Peat is a microbiologist and flag officer in the US Public Health Service (USPHS) Commissioned Corps. As a flag officer, RDML Peat holds the title of Assistant Surgeon General and is relied upon by the U.S. Surgeon General and the USPHS to support special initiatives.

She is the first female flag officer for the healthcare category and the first Jamaican-American flag officer for the USPHS. She is also the first member of the Zeta Phi Beta sorority to hold the rank of flag officer in the USPHS.

She holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree and a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Maryland, a Master of Science degree from Johns Hopkins University, and a Master of Public Health degree from George Washington University. She also holds a certificate from the Leadership for a Democratic Society Program from the Federal Executive Institute of the U.S. Office of Personnel Management.

RDML Peat has more than 25 years of experience as a senior executive service level leader and technical and regulatory expert, and as a manager and supervisor, in a variety of areas including pharmaceuticals, medical devices and tobacco products. She works at the Food and Drug Administration as director of the Office of Health Technology 6 (OHT6): Office of Orthopedic Devices in the Office of Product Evaluation and Quality, Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH).

She is responsible for regulating orthopedic devices for pre-market compliance and post-market surveillance activities in a total product life cycle organization, and as director of the Office of Orthopedic Devices, she provides executive leadership, guidance and scientific direction to a multidisciplinary scientific healthcare organization. , and administrative professional staff of more than 100 staff.

In addition, she is appointed as the Center’s Health Equity Officer for Evaluation Programs to address the Center’s strategic priority to advance health equity by engaging multiple stakeholders to advance knowledge and solutions across the entire product lifecycle. She served as Director of the Premarket and Labeling Compliance Division, in the Office of Compliance, in the CDRH, where she was responsible for enforcing pre- and post-market requirements, as well as promotional, advertising and labeling requirements for medical devices.


RDML Peat served as branch chief (senior Supervisory Regulatory Review Officer) in the Regulatory Project Management Division of the Center for Tobacco Products (CTP), Office of Science, from 2013 to 2016. Prior to joining CTP, she was a senior microbiology reviewer/leader (director regulatory review officer) in the CDRH, Office of In Vitro Diagnostics and Radiological Health, Division of Microbiology Devices.

She was assigned to the Center for Drug Evaluation and Research’s Office of New Drugs (OND), both in the OND Immediate Office and the Division of Anti-Infective Drug Products, as a senior regulatory project officer. In both roles, she served as a central regulatory expert, resource and co-review team leader for products and policies covering all research and new drug applications.

Before joining the FDA and the USPHS, RDML Peat served in the U.S. Army as a biomedical researcher. She has participated in multiple deployments including those for COVID-19, Hurricanes Irma, Maria, Sandy, Gustav, Katrina and Rita, etc.

RDML Peat chaired the Mentoring Subcommittee of the Health Services Professional Advisory Committee (HSPAC) (2010-2011). During her tenure as chair of the HSPAC Mentoring Subcommittee, a new mentoring program was launched designed to support the career development of all healthcare executives in the USPHS. It was revamped to include an online application process, a revised website, an updated mentoring handbook, the provision of mentoring materials and the development of a new tracking and evaluation system.

RDML Peat has received numerous recognitions and awards for its outstanding achievements. These include: the Outstanding Service Medal, the Surgeon General’s Exemplary Service Medal, and the Joseph Garcia Jr. 2008 Award for Outstanding Excellence, Contributions to the USPHS, Public Health in General, and Continued Leadership in Multiple Roles.

The daughter of a nurse and police officer, she was born and raised in Kingston and St Andrew and attended Alpha Prep School and St Hugh’s High School (up to GCE ‘A’ level). She has come a long way to this latest achievement, and told The Shiner“It’s all quite surreal at the moment. I am humbled and honored to be awarded the rank of Admiral.”

The 1989 migrant to the US continued: “I also believe that my path is ordered and that God the creator has made a way for me to be promoted to this rank. This has been an extraordinary journey filled with hard work and a commitment to duty to the American public in support of our mission to protect, promote and advance public health. I hope to use this new platform to continue serving the American public both domestically and internationally.”