- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 19, 2019

President Trump on Tuesday nominated retired airline executive Stephen Dickson to be administrator of the embattled Federal Aviation Administration, which is under fire for hesitating to ground a Boeing aircraft after two deadly crashes.

Mr. Trump tapped Mr. Dickson for a five-year term at the FAA, which has been led by acting Administrator Daniel Elwell since January 2018.

Captain Dickson is a strong advocate for commercial aviation safety and improvements to our National Airspace System, having served as chairman of several industry stakeholder groups and Federal advisory committees,” the White House said.

Mr. Dickson recently retired as senior vice president-flight operations for Delta Air Lines, where he was responsible for the safety and operational performance of global flight operations, pilot training and regulatory compliance.

The FAA came under criticism for being virtually the last regulator in the world to ground operations of Boeing’s 737 Max 8 and 9 series aircraft after a crash in Ethiopia last week killed all 157 people aboard. Another crash of the aircraft in October in Indonesia killed all 189 passengers and crew.

Investigators are looking at similarities between the two crashes involving a sensor that points the plane’s nose downward when it detects a stall.

The FAA said it acted responsibly and did not react to political pressure. The agency said it was grounding the planes as a precaution; Boeing is working on a software fix.

Mr. Dickson has piloted the Airbus A320 captain, and has also flown B727, B737, B757, and B767 aircraft during his career. A former Air Force Officer and F-15 fighter pilot, he is a 1979 graduate of the U.S. Air Force Academy and the Georgia State University College of Law.

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