President Joe Biden has tapped two leaders with emergency management and public health backgrounds to lead the nation’s response to the monkeypox disease as cases continue to climb.
Robert Fenton of the Federal Emergency Management Agency will serve as the White House National Monkeypox Response Coordinator and Demetre Daskalakis will be deputy coordinator, the White House said Tuesday. Daskalakis is currently director of the Centers for Disease Control Division of HIV Prevention.
Fenton and Daskalakis will work to coordinate efforts across federal agencies to fight the outbreak. They will be responsible for working with state and local authorities to ensure there are supplies to test, treat and vaccinate at-risk people, the White House said.
Fenton currently serves as regional administrator for the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Region 9 in the American West. The territory he oversees includes 50 million people, according to the White House. More recently, Fenton oversaw FEMA’s mass vaccination efforts.
In his role at the CDC, Daskalakis is responsible for HIV prevention work. Daskalakis was the head of the vaccine task force within CDC’s COVID-19 response. Prior to the CDC, Daskalakis was the deputy commissioner for the Division of Disease Control in New York City's health department.