José Andrés Was Appointed To A New Role At The White House

José Andrés is known for giving back. Just days after Ukraine was attacked by Russia, the chef was at Ukraine's border with Poland sharing a video on Twitter with the message: "People of the World ... Reporting from the Ukraine border! This is one of the places @WCKitchen [World Central Kitchen] has hot meals. It is below freezing tonight & I am meeting so many refugees, families who are escaping & don't know what's next ... We will do our best not to let them down!"

This is not the first time Andrés has been on the front lines of tragedy. World Central Kitchen was organized in 2010, after a massive earthquake struck Haiti. It has since been at the forefront of different humanitarian efforts in places recovering from other natural disasters from Puerto Rico to Beirut, Australia to Louisiana. World Central Kitchen helped feed people at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, and a documentary about the nonprofit recently debuted at South by Southwest.

And as of this week Andrés has been given another task, this time by the Biden administration: he has been named co-chair for the President's Council on Sports, Fitness, and Nutrition. Andrés is not the first celebrity to be appointed to the role; other big names that have served as chair include Arnold Schwarzenegger, actor Lou Ferrigno, and Olympic gymnast Dominique Dawes (via The Hill).

Andrés takes over as his predecessors leave under a cloud

Andrés and his new co-chair, Washington Mystics' player Elena Delle Donne, take over a federal committee whose task, per the White House, is "to promote healthy, accessible eating and physical activity for all Americans, regardless of background or ability." The committee was created by Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956 (then named the President's Council on Youth Fitness); it was singled out by John F. Kennedy who saw a national need to look at fitness; and its mandate was expanded to include all Americans, regardless of age, by Lyndon B. Johnson (Johnson also changed the name to the President's Council on Physical Fitness). The most recent change was made by Barack Obama, who include nutrition in the council's ethos and title (via MarketWatch).

The chef and humanitarian thanked U.S. President Joe Biden for the honor on Twitter, writing "Thank you @POTUS – it's an honor to serve, especially with my co-chair @De11eDonne. I'm excited to get to work putting nutrition at the heart of creating a healthy, prosperous & more equitable future for America and the world, where food brings us together to build #longertables."

Andrés and Delle Donne take over the President's council after its two previous co-chairs, talk show host Dr. Mehmet Oz and Herschel Walker, were asked to resign for violating the Hatch Act, explains The Washington Post; they were not allowed to seek election for public office. Both Walker and Oz are running for seats in the U.S. Senate.