The Fight Against Tobacco: National and Local Legislation, Regulation, and Communication

Featuring perspectives from the U. S. Food and Drug and Administration (FDA) and Philadelphia’s hard-hitting “Break the Cycle Campaign”

Thursday, November 3 12:00-1:30pm

Steinberg Hall - Dietrich Hall Room 1206




This seminar will feature perspectives from both National and Local government on the legislation, regulation, and communication surrounding tobacco. We will first look at this through the lens of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a brief history and an overview of the Tobacco Control Act, in addition to regulation set by the FDA Center for Tobacco Products. Much of the communication from the FDA to users is through mandatory labeling, but also comes in the form of media campaigns. Philadelphia’s approach to tobacco will then be discussed through the history, framework and policy work of Get Healthy Philly, specifically their Break the Cycle mass media campaign that uses real tobacco industry quotes and local data. The talk will touch on the approach, implementation, and next steps of this hard-hitting media campaign. You don’t want to miss this!


Speaker Bios: 

Les Weinstein, JD, MPA is a former Senior Consultant with the EAS Consulting Group. He had previously worked at FDA for thirty two years where he was most recently the first Ombudsman in the Center for Tobacco Products (CTP). Prior to this position he was the Ombudsman in FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health (CDRH), during which time Medical Device and Diagnostic Industry Magazine named him twice as one of the 100 most notable people in and around the medical device industry. Upon his retirement from FDA he was given the Distinguished Career Service Award by the Commissioner of Food and Drugs.

Mr. Weinstein is currently an Adjunct Political Science Professor at Montgomery College in Rockville, Maryland.

He is a graduate of Brown University and George Mason University School of Law and has a Master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Rhode Island.




Ryan Coffman, MPH, CHES, CTTS-M is the Tobacco Policy and Control Program Manager for the Philadelphia Department of Public Health. In this role, he oversees several tobacco control and policy initiatives under the Get Healthy Philly Initiative.  These initiatives include the prevention of youth smoking, retail-level tobacco control, promoting smoke-free environments, mass media, and cessation activities.  He is committed to serving vulnerable, at-risk populations disproportionately impacted by the effects of tobacco use.

Previously, Ryan provided inpatient, outpatient, and community tobacco use disorder treatment in hospital, behavioral health, and substance abuse treatment settings. He acquired his Masters in Public Health (MPH) degree at Tulane University and has certifications in health education, tobacco use disorder treatment and global tobacco control. Ryan first became committed to tobacco control in 2003 while serving as a Peace Corps volunteer in Kenya and continues to provide clinical services and technical assistance  at Health Center 2 in South Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Prison System.