Erika Pijai, MS, RD

Senior Nutritionist / Senior Technical Advisor

USDA Food and Nutrition Service, Child Nutrition Programs

Alexandria, VA

Erika Pijai, MS, RD, is the Senior Nutritionist/Technical Advisor for Child Nutrition Programs at USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service. In this role, she manages nutrition education, training, and technical assistance for national Child Nutrition programs. Erika coordinates the agency’s national sodium reduction initiative and leads efforts related to enhancing the school and child care nutrition environments. She has also been instrumental in the development and implementation of key priorities such as school wellness policies, sodium reduction in schools, and CACFP technical assistance. These accomplishments have included authoring the federal regulation for school wellness policies, establishing key collaborations with national associations and organizations to advance wellness policy and sodium reduction work, and leading the development of numerous nutrition education resources that support healthy eating and physical activity habits among children. Erika is a Registered Dietitian and holds a B.S. degree in Nutritional Sciences-Dietetics from Cornell University, and a M.S. degree in Nutrition Education from Columbia University. Erika has received numerous awards related to her work in nutrition and dietetics including several USDA Abraham Lincoln Honor Awards, a USDA Cultural Transformer Award, and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics' Emerging Dietetics Leader award.

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