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May 20, 2021 24 min

Margaret “Meg” H. Whittaker, Managing Director and Chief Toxicologist of ToxServices LLC, outlines the similarities and differences between risk assessment, alternative assessments, and green chemistry. Co-hosts Anne Chappelle and David Faulkner also discover how alternative assessments can lead to safer and more sustainable products that protect animal, human, and environmental health and the importance of diversifying your portfolio when you’re a student or early career researcher.


About the Guest

Margaret H. Whittaker, PhD, MPH, CBiol, FRSB, ERT, DABT, has over 20 years of experience in both the performance and management of toxicology and human health hazard and risk assessment–related projects. She is currently the Managing Director and Chief Toxicologist of ToxServices LLC, where she serves as the project manager and technical lead of ToxServices projects for the US Environmental Protection Agency’s Safer Choice Program, Clean Production Action’s GreenScreen, international certification organizations, testing laboratories, and consumer products companies that manufacture and test products such as food additives, food contact materials, cleaning chemicals, fragrance agents, electronics, cosmetics, dietary supplements, medical devices, pharmaceuticals, and drinking water additives. As project manager and technical lead for contracts with these organizations, Dr. Whittaker has contributed to and/or managed the development of hundreds of human health risk assessments, chemical hazard assessments, and exposure assessments, as well as hundreds of product-specific toxicology evaluations.

Dr. Whittaker is a Diplomate of the American Board of Toxicology and earned a PhD in toxicology from the University of Maryland Baltimore and an MPH in environmental health from the University of Michigan. Dr. Whittaker is a UK/EUROTOX Registered Toxicologist, as well as a Chartered Biologist and Fellow of the UK Royal Society of Biology. Dr. Whittaker has built her career on a foundation grounded in leadership and adherence to details and timelines. One of her first career awards (1992) was a United States Coast Guard Commandant’s Award for Outstanding Civilian Service, through which her “alacrity and tenacity” displayed while working on projects associated with the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 were officially recognized.

In addition to her extensive program management experience, Dr. Whittaker has extensive technical experience in hazard identification and non-cancer and cancer dose-response assessment, including quantitative risk assessment (e.g., benchmark dose modeling for both carcinogens and noncarcinogens). She specializes in conducting chemical hazard assessments and chemical alternatives assessments. Before creating ToxServices in 2003, she worked at two of the country’s leading toxicology and risk assessment consulting firms (the ENVIRON Corporation and the Weinberg Group).


The viewpoints and information presented in Adverse Reactions represent those of the participating individuals. Although the Society of Toxicology holds the copyright to the production, it does not vet or review the information presented, nor does presenting and distributing the Adverse Reactions podcast represent any proposal or endorsement of any position by the Society.

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