Obama picks chair for Consumer Product Safety board

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama chose a former South Carolina education superintendent to lead the Consumer Product Safety Commission and announced plans to increase the number of its commissioners, the White House said on Tuesday.

Obama intends to nominate Inez Moore Tenenbaum, who served two terms as South Carolina’s State Superintendent of Education, to chair the commission, the White House said.

The president wants Robert Adler, an expert in consumer product safety issues and a professor at the University of North Carolina, to serve as a new CPSC commissioner.

Obama intends to increase the number of commissioners to five from three and to increase the safety board’s budget to $107 million, which the White House said was a 71 percent jump from fiscal year 2007.

“It is a top priority of my administration to ensure that the products the American people depend on are safe,” Obama said in a statement.

“We must do more to protect the American public -- especially our nation’s children -- from being harmed by unsafe products.”

Reporting by Jeff Mason