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NATCA Thanks FAA ATO COO Teri Bristol for Efforts to Build Collaboration, Improve Aviation Safety

WASHINGTON – The National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) today congratulates Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Air Traffic Organization (ATO) Chief Operating Officer (COO) Teri Bristol on her upcoming retirement and thanks her for her efforts every day in working to develop and solidify collaboration between the FAA and NATCA as well as across the aviation industry to improve aviation safety and provide the best results for air travelers.

“Teri has always respected aviation safety professionals working at all levels of the ATO and the unions that represent them,” NATCA President Rich Santa said. “She had a very successful career at the FAA, and for the last decade – first in her role as deputy COO and then COO since 2014 – NATCA has been privileged to partner with her. She is a strong, inspiring leader for whom we have great respect.

“The success of our collaborative relationship with the FAA over the last dozen years is a shining model for the federal government and has been built on trust and integrity. Teri demonstrated those positive traits and many more. We are proud of the incredible work we accomplished together for the benefit of the safety of the National Airspace System and the employees who safeguard it. We thank her for her leadership. We will miss working with her, and we wish her the very best.”

One example of Bristol’s commitment to the air traffic controller and aviation safety professional workforce was her steadfast support of NATCA’s annual Archie League Medal of Safety Awards. Named for the first U.S. air traffic controller, the awards honor the best controller saves of pilots in emergency situations. Bristol attended every Archie League Medal of Safety Awards banquet, held at NATCA’s annual Communicating For Safety conference, during her term as COO. She delivered keynote remarks to begin the awards banquets in both 2018 and 2019, focusing on training and supporting the next generation of controllers.

“I want to thank all of our controllers for their skill, their professionalism, and their commitment to the FAA’s mission,” Bristol told attendees at the 2019 Archie League awards banquet. “You’re a big reason why the FAA is the gold standard in aviation around the world. In a perfect world, there wouldn’t be a need for saves. But we know we don’t live in a perfect world. Mitigating risk can never be left to chance. It’s about choice. It’s about investing the time, again and again, so that you’re prepared for any circumstance.”

In a Labor Day message to ATO employees in 2016, Bristol celebrated what she called “the strong and continuous collaboration” the FAA enjoys with its labor partners that, “is helping us to accomplish our mission to ensure the safest, most efficient airspace system in the world.”

MORE INFORMATION: Doug Church, Deputy Director of Public Affairs; 301-346-8245, [email protected].

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The National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) is a labor union and aviation safety organization in the United States that represents nearly 20,000 highly skilled air traffic controllers, engineers, and other aviation safety-related professionals. NATCA was certified in 1987 by the Federal Labor Relations Authority to be the exclusive bargaining representative for air traffic controllers employed by the Federal Aviation Administration. Today, NATCA is one of the strongest labor unions in the federal sector and represents a range of aviation safety professionals in 15 FAA bargaining units, 5 Department of Defense air traffic facilities, and 122 federal contract towers. These air traffic controllers and other aviation safety professionals make vital contributions to the U.S. economy and make modern life possible by coordinating the safe, orderly, and expeditious movement of nearly one billion aviation passengers and millions of tons of freight within the National Airspace System each year. NATCA is headquartered in Washington, D.C., and is affiliated with the AFL-CIO.

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