Babbitt Lands Top FAA Job; Obama Names NASA Choice
The Senate on Thursday night confirmed former Air Line Pilots Association president Randy Babbitt as the next FAA Administrator for a five-year term. During his nomination hearing, several senators referenced the February 12 crash of Continental Connection Flight 3407 near Buffalo, N.Y., and asked him about fatigue and crew training for regional airline pilots. Babbitt told the panel that, if confirmed, he would review training standards at regional airlines. The Senate on Thursday night also approved John Porcari, the former Maryland DOT Secretary, as the U.S. DOT’s deputy secretary. Meanwhile, President Obama has nominated former astronaut Charles Bolden Jr. to become the next NASA administrator. A veteran of four space flights with more than 680 hours in orbit, Bolden, if confirmed by the Senate, will be the first African-American to lead the space agency. The retired Marine Corps major general graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy and became one of the nation’s outstanding fighter and test pilots, as well as an astronaut.