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Hudson Institute Co-Hosts Blue Ribbon Biodefense Panel

Bipartisan panel to produce study on American preparedness for biological threats; Governor Tom Ridge and Senator Joe Lieberman co-chair the panel

Washington, D.C. (Dec. 4, 2014) – Today, Hudson Institute co-hosted the first meeting of a Blue Ribbon Study Panel examining the United States’ readiness to address bioterrorism and naturally occurring outbreaks.

The Blue Ribbon Study Panel is co-chaired by Governor Tom Ridge and Senator Joe Lieberman. Panelists include Senator Tom Daschle, Representative Jim Greenwood, Secretary Donna Shalala, and the Honorable Kenneth Wainstein. The first meeting focused on biological threat awareness and included expert testimony by current Congressional leaders, the co-chair of the WMD Commission, former executive branch officials, and thought leaders from the defense industry.

“This bipartisan panel was formed to assess the nation’s preparedness,” said Governor Tom Ridge and Senator Joe Lieberman in a released joint statement. “We are joined by senior leaders from both parties in an effort to identify changes to U.S. policy and law necessary to strengthen our resilience, while optimizing resource investments.”

The Blue Ribbon Study Panel will culminate in a study that will be released in Spring of 2015. The study will address immediate and long-term vulnerabilities posed by biological threats and identify recommended actions for current and future Congresses and Presidential Administrations.

The study will mark the first major assessment of America’s biodefense capabilities in the last decade. It is preceded by reports produced National Commission on Terrorist Attacks upon the United States (the 9/11 Commission) and assessments made by the Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction Proliferation and Terrorism (the WMD Commission). The Blue Ribbon Study Panel is co-sponsored by Hudson Institute and the Inter-University Center for Terrorism Studies.

Credentialed members of the press interested in attending the panel meetings are invited to contact Carolyn Stewart.

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