Christopher Hart Nominated To Head NTSB

Aviation leaders praise nomination of GA pilot.

Christopher Hart NTSB

Christopher Hart NTSB

** Christopher Hart**NTSB

President Obama's choice to head the National Transportation Safety Board is winning unanimous praise in aviation circles, and for good reason. Christopher Hart, an NTSB board member since 2009, is an active GA pilot who holds a commercial license with multi-engine and instrument ratings. He will succeed Deborah Hersman, who left the NTSB to head the National Safety Council, as head of the agency responsible for investigating transportation accidents in the United States.

Hart has been serving as NTSB vice chairman since October 2013. Before joining the board he was the deputy director for air traffic safety oversight at the FAA from 2005 to 2009 and was the assistant administrator for system safety at the FAA from 1995 to 2005. From 1994 to 1995 he served as deputy administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. He was also an NTSB board member from 1990 to 1993.

Hart received a B.S.E. and M.S. from Princeton University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. He was managing partner at the law firm of Hart & Chavers from 1981 to 1990 and associate attorney at Dickstein, Shapiro & Morin from 1979 to 1981. He served as the deputy assistant general counsel for environmental, civil rights, and general law at the Department of Transportation from 1977 to 1979.

"We are very pleased that the president has chosen to nominate a pilot as the next chairman of the NTSB," said AOPA president and CEO Mark Baker. "With a long career in transportation and aviation safety, we believe he is particularly well-suited for this new role and we look forward to continuing our partnership with the NTSB in identifying modern and constructive ways to further improve general aviation safety."

Said General Aviation Manufacturers Association president Pete Bunce: "GAMA has worked with Chris Hart in the different roles that he has served in at the NTSB and FAA over the past couple of decades. As an avid general aviation pilot, he has always been willing to meet with GAMA and our members to get firsthand experience with aircraft manufacturing and new technologies, and thoroughly understands the aviation system."

Hart must next be confirmed by the Senate.

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