America’s Aviation Community Agrees: FAA Needs Phil Washington’s Leadership

March 21, 2023

In an extraordinary show of support from across America’s aviation industry, Pilots, Flight Attendants, Safety Specialists, Safety Advocates, Air Traffic Controllers, Aerospace Workers, Airport Executives, Airlines, Business Leaders coalesce around Biden nominee


Momentum continues to grow behind President Biden’s nominee, Phil Washington, to serve as the next FAA Administrator. Over the last two weeks, Mr. Washington has received endorsements from across the U.S. aviation community, including pilots, flight attendants, aerospace workers, airport executives, safety specialists, airlines, former FAA administrators and others who agree he is the right person at the right time to lead the FAA.

In a letter to the committee, families who lost loved ones aboard the Ethiopian Airlines flight 302 wrote: “We ET302 families prioritize independence from the aviation industry, the ability to step into a leadership vacuum, transform large complex organizations, and a true focus upon aviation safety improvement beyond where we are now.  We believe Mr. Washington exhibits these qualities and shares these goals… As a result, we endorse Mr. Washington.”

Read: Families Who Lost Loved Ones Aboard ET302 Firmly Endorse Phil Washington as The Outsider FAA Needs to “Spur Transformative Safety Change”

Three Past FAA Administrators endorsed Phil Washington, saying in a letter: “We also know what it takes to effectively run the FAA…Mr. Washington, as the leader of the world’s third busiest airport, has the necessary aviation safety experience to be Administrator…Having a 30,000-foot view does not require getting a pilot’s license.”

Read: Past FAA Administrators Endorse Phil Washington, Biden’s Nominee for FAA Administrator

The Airports Council International-North America gave to lesson to Republicans on what it takes to run an airport: “No one better understands the needs and challenges of the federal aviation system than the leaders of our nation’s airports…We fully endorse Phil’s nomination to serve in this important role and encourage the Senate to swiftly confirm him,” President and CEO Kevin Burke said.  

Read: Republicans Get Lesson On What It Takes To Run An Airport


America’s Aviation Community Supports Phil Washington

VIEW Letters of Support



Ethiopian Airlines flight 302 crash victim family members and safety advocates  
Michael Stumo and Nadia Milleron, parents of Samya Rose Stumo

Catherine Berthet, mother of Camille Geoffroy

Naoise Ryan, wife of Mick Ryan

Ike and Susan Riffel, parents of Melvin and Bennett Riffel

Chris Moore, father of Danielle Moore

Javier De Luis, brother of Graziella de Luis y Ponce


Aviation Safety

National Air Traffic Controllers Association, AFL-CIO, 20,000 air traffic controllers

Professional Aviation Safety Specialists, AFL-CIO, 11,000 public servants at FAA and DOD



Air Line Pilots Association, 67,000 pilots


Flight Attendants

Association of Flight Attendants-CWA, AFL-CIO, 50,000 flight attendants
Association of Professional Flight Attendants, 25,000 American Airlines flight attendants


Airport and Transportation Workers

Transportation Trades Departments, AFL-CIO, 37 Unions, Millions of Workers

Service Employees International Union, Airport Workers United, 36,000 Airport Service Workers

Transport Workers Union of America, AFL-CIO, 155,000 members

UNITE HERE, 40,000 airport workers

International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, 100,000 Airline Workers

National Association of Black Women in Construction

Past FAA Administrators

Linda Daschle, Acting FAA Administrator, Deputy FAA Administrator, 1993-1997
Jane Garvey, FAA Administrator, 1997-2002
Michael Huerta, Acting Secretary of Transportation, FAA Administrator, Acting FAA Administrator, Deputy FAA Administrator 2010-2018


Former U.S. Secretaries of Transportation

Honorable Rodney Slater, former U.S. Secretary of Transportation, 1997-2001

Honorable Ray LaHood, former U.S. Secretary of Transportation, 2009-2013


Former U.S. House Transportation Chairman and Members of Congress

Honorable Peter DeFazio, former Chairman of the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee

U.S. House of Representatives Brad Sherman,

Henry C. "Hank" Johnson, Jr.,

Adam B. Schiff,

Grace Napolitano,

Judy Chu,

Tony Cárdenas,

Ted Lieu,

Alan Lowenthal,

Norma J. Torres,

Linda Sánchez



Airports Council International-North America, 300 North American Airports

Read: Republicans Get Lesson On What It Takes To Run An Airport

American Association of Airport Executives, 9,000 members across 850 airports

Airport Consultants Council, 240 member companies

Greater Toronto Airports Authority
Williamsport Airport Authority, PA




Southwest Airlines, CEO Bob Jordan

Frontier Airlines, President and CEO, Barry Biffle

National Air Carrier Association, 21 Airlines



Transportation Systems

American Public Transportation Association, 1,500 public and private sector member organizations

Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority

Center for Transportation and the Environment, more than 70 organizations and companies

Port of Seattle



Travel and Tourism

U.S. Travel, representing the $1.2 trillion travel industry




African American Mayors Association, 125 mayors and members





Airport Restaurant & Retail Association

Los Angeles County Business Federation “BizFed” 235 businesses, 450,000 employers, 5 million employees

Joby Aviation