Ultimate Fighting Championship today announced the hiring of former U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) special agent Jeff Novitzky as the company’s new vice president of athlete health and performance.
Novitzky will join the Las Vegas-based organization later this month, according to a Monday release from the UFC.
Novitzky is known in the sports world as a prominent anti-doping investigator, having overseen and investigated some of the country’s most highly publicized steroid cases. The San Jose State University graduate had a prominent role in the BALCO investigation which led to the 2007 indictment of Barry Bonds.
“There is no bigger advocate of clean professional sports than Jeff Novitzky,” UFC Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Lawrence Epstein stated in the release. “When we announced our commitment for an enhanced drug testing program in February, we wanted to ensure that the best people would be helping move this program forward and Jeff will lead the UFC in developing the most comprehensive anti-doping policy in professional sports.”
In February, UFC announced a revamped testing policy which will take effect on July 1 and will subject all fighters to random drug tests. The announcement came on the heels of a spate of high-profile fighters testing positive for PEDs and other drugs, including Anderson Silva, Jon Jones, Nick Diaz and Hector Lombard.