WASHINGTON — Greg Regan and Shari Semelsberger, President and Secretary-Treasurer of the AFL-CIO Transportation Trades Department (TTD), issued this statement following the nomination of Michael Whitaker to lead the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA):
“As the nation’s largest transportation labor federation, we welcome President Biden’s nomination of Michael Whitaker to lead the FAA. The agency is long overdue for permanent leadership, especially as our national airspace system faces urgent challenges such as flight disruptions, safety incidents, and staffing issues for air traffic controllers and other aviation safety professionals. The Administrator role is one of the most critical safety jobs in the Department of Transportation and must be filled by a permanent leader who can clear the significant backlog of overdue rule makings and provide stability as the previous five-year reauthorization of the FAA is set to expire this year.
“Mr. Whitaker possesses a breadth of experience in the industry, including his previous service as an FAA deputy administrator and in the private sector at United Airlines. His experience in both the government and private sectors and his commitment to public safety make him uniquely qualified to build a successful coalition to address ongoing safety challenges and ensure that America remains the gold standard for aviation safety.
“As we work to improve the aviation industry for workers and passengers, we look forward to continued collaboration with departmental and agency leaders like Mr. Whitaker. We applaud President Biden’s nomination and urge Congress to swiftly confirm Mr. Whitaker as FAA Administrator.”