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NATCA Safety & Technology Department Leadership Changes as Adcock Retires

Last week, Director of Safety and Technology Tom Adcock retired from his position on NATCA’s staff. Tom has been a part of this Union and his profession for all of NATCA’s three decades of history. He began his FAA career at Atlanta Center (ZTL) in 1985 and worked as a controller at Miami Center (ZMA) for 27 years starting in 1987. He served as facility vice president at ZMA twice, with his most recent term from 2009 to 2012. 

During his career as a controller, Tom was recognized with numerous awards including the inaugural Excellence in Training Award in 2019, the Dale Wright Award in 2019, the National Professionalism Award in 2019, and three Tim Haines Memorial Awards, at the 2006, 2014, and 2018 conventions. 

Before retiring from air traffic and joining the NATCA staff, Tom served as the National Training Representative where he led NATCA’s collaborative efforts with the Agency in the area of developing future training for air traffic controllers. 

As Director of Safety and Technology, Tom oversaw many of NATCA’s Article 114 representatives, as well as the planning of NATCA’s annual Communicating for Safety (CFS) conference. 

About his service to our Union, NATCA President Rich Santa stated, “NATCA thanks Tom for giving more than 35 years of notable service to our Union. His dedication and solidarity to NATCA and commitment to maintaining the safety of our National Airspace System are greatly appreciated. He will be missed.”

Mark McKelligan, who has served as Deputy Director of Safety and Technology since Oct. 2016, has been promoted to Director of Safety and Technology. Mark first joined NATCA in 1988 and spent his air traffic career at Boston Center. 

NATCA member Phil Hargarten joined the Safety and Technology Department as Deputy Director in January. Phil previously worked at Seattle TRACON (S46). Most recently, he served as NATCA’s Article 114 National Trajectory Based Operations Representative. 

If you’d like to learn more about Tom, check out his staff spotlight here.

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