WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 28, 2008) — McDermott Will & Emery is pleased to announce the addition of Sheila D. Walcoff as partner in the Firm's Health Law Department and Life Sciences Government Strategies Practice Group. Ms. Walcoff, who will be based in the Firm's Washington, D.C. office, served as Counselor to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service (HHS), Associate Commissioner for External Affairs at the FDA and, after leaving the Administration in July of 2007, was the senior health policy advisor to Fred Thompson's 2008 presidential campaign.
Michael Anthony, head of the Firm's Health Law Department, stated, "Sheila, in addition to recent lateral hires, including Eric Hargan, former HHS Acting Deputy Secretary, adds talent and experience to the Firm's leading health law team and markedly expands our life sciences practice."
"This is an incredible time for me to join McDermott, with its unsurpassed health and life science platform, international presence, practice depth, and diverse client base," commented Ms. Walcoff. "I am particularly excited about the opportunity to expand the McDermott Life Sciences Government Strategies Practice Group by bringing a new range of skills and broader focus on personalized medicine to a stellar team."
As Counselor, Ms. Walcoff advised the HHS Secretary, the White House and other government agencies on all science and public health policy, management, communications and budget matters, including personalized medicine, follow-on biologics, amendments to the Food Drug and Cosmetic Act and food safety. She served as the principal policy liaison managing the four public health and science operating divisions of HHS: the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), National Institutes of Health (NIH), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ). She also developed and directed major HHS and Administration initiatives, including personalized health care, genomics and information technology, prevention, World Trade Center responder health care and HIV/AIDS initiatives.
Prior to her appointment to Counselor, Ms. Walcoff served as Associate Commissioner for External Relations at FDA, where she provided policy and communications counsel to the FDA Commissioner and other senior government officials, managed the Offices of External Relations and Public Affairs and directed the agency's interactions with its stakeholders, including the Agency's response to a number of critical, high profile product safety issues.
A 1993 graduate of the Georgetown University Law Center, Ms. Walcoff was an attorney with a large international law firm prior to her most recent government service. She also has significant government strategies and legislative experience, having served as the majority counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Armed Services Committee.
With an over 50-year history of serving the health care industry, McDermott Will & Emery has one of the United States' largest and most experienced health law departments. Our international health team, resident in the Firm's Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, Munich, New York, and Washington, D.C. offices, counsel leading organizations in every major sector of the health care industry on regulatory and business transaction issues.