White House Chief Medical Advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci announced he would retire from that position in December.
Dr. Fauci, 81, had previously hinted at retirement during the current White House administration.
“After more than 50 years of government service, I plan to pursue the next phase of my career while I still have so much energy and passion for my field,” Fauci said in a statement. “I want to use what I have learned as NIAID Director to continue to advance science and public health and to inspire and mentor the next generation of scientific leaders as they help prepare the world to face future infectious disease threats.”
Fauci became a leading voice during the COVID-19 pandemic, guiding the White House Coronavirus Task Force and advising former president Donald Trump on how to proceed amid the threat of the virus.
He has also advised President Joe Biden, with the POTUS praising Fauci’s response to the pandemic, as well as past virus responses.
“During my time as Vice President, I worked closely with Dr. Anthony Fauci on the United States’ response to Zika and Ebola,” Biden said in a statement Monday. “I came to know him as a dedicated public servant, and a steady hand with wisdom and insight honed over decades at the forefront of some of our most dangerous and challenging public health crises.”
In 2020, Fauci was named Time Magazine’s Guardian of the Year, along with healthcare workers battling the COVID-19 pandemic. Decades early, in 2008, President George W. Bush awarded Fauci the Presidential Medal of Freedom for his work during the AIDS crisis.
“Three decades ago, a mysterious and terrifying plague began to take the lives of people across the world,” President Bush said during the 2008 Medal of Freedom ceremony. “Before this malady even had a name, it had a fierce opponent in Dr. Anthony Fauci. As the Director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for more than 23 years, Tony Fauci has led the fight against HIV and AIDS. He was also a leading architect and champion of the Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, which over the past five years has reached millions of people—preventing HIV infections in infants and easing suffering and bringing dying communities back to life.”
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