U.S. deputy secretary names new acting head of FAA

U.S. deputy secretary names new acting head of FAA

WASHINGTON Reuters - U.S. Transportation deputy secretary Polly Trottenberg is taking over as acting head of the Federal Aviation Administration, the agency said on Thursday.

Biden is also planning to name Katie Thomson, the chief of staff at the FAA, as deputy administrator, replacing Bradley Mims.

The appointment of Trottenberg is effective immediately. She replaces Billy Nolen, who has been acting head of the FAA since April 2022. In April, Nolen announced he would resign after a new administrator was nominated.

In March, Washington withdrew his nomination to serve as an administrator of the FAA after Republican criticism. The White House has not named a new nominee for the president.

The transportation secretary, Pete Buttigieg, said he has confidence in Polly's steady hand during the search for a permanent administrator. Mims will be heading up the Transportation Department's Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization.

The United States has been grappling with questions about safety due to a series of close-call runway incidents this year and a computer outage in January that led to the first nationwide grounding of departing passenger airliners since September 2001.

The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating six incidents that have been catastrophic on the runways since January, including those that could have been catastrophic.

He has served as transportation commissioner in New York City, as a senior USDOT policy official under President Barack Obama, and as an aide in the U.S. Senate to Senator Charles Schumer.

In two U.S. presidential administrations, Thomson has served as the director of implementation of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and has served as a senior position at the FAA.

Reuters yesterday reported that Nolen will take a position with the electric air taxi firm Archer Aviation.