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Rinaldi and Gilbert Re-Elected to Unprecedented Fourth Terms

WASHINGTON – National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) President Paul Rinaldi and Executive Vice President Trish Gilbert were re-elected Tuesday to an unprecedented fourth, three-year term. No other president or EVP in NATCA’s 31-year history has served more than two terms. Rinaldi and Gilbert won with the most votes ever received for president and executive vice president of NATCA. During this period of significant legislative uncertainty, they have led NATCA through a highly successful period of collaboration with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and other aviation stakeholders and have fostered new heights of growth and activism in the Union.

Prior to being elected NATCA President, Rinaldi served three years as executive vice president, after 16 years as an air traffic controller at Washington-Dulles ATCT (IAD), where he served as local president and alternate Eastern Regional Vice President. Rinaldi currently holds positions on the NextGen Advisory Committee (NAC), the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Management Advisory Council (MAC) and is a vice president on the AFL-CIO’s Executive Council. Rinaldi also serves on the RTCA Policy Board and the Board of Advisors for the Eno Center for Transportation

Prior to election as NATCA EVP, Gilbert served as chair of NATCA’s legislative committee. She worked 21 years as an air traffic controller at Houston Center (ZHU), where she served three terms as local president. She represents NATCA widely in government, aviation stakeholder groups, and union organizations. Gilbert is a member of the FAA Drone Advisory Committee (DAC). She serves on the Aero Club of Washington Board of Governors, Director of the NATCA Charitable Foundation, and Vice Chair of the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) Air Traffic Services Committee. Gilbert served for two years on the Constitution and Administration Committee (CAC) of the International Federation of Air Traffic Controllers' Associations (IFATCA) and currently serves on IFATCA’s Finance Committee (FIC). Gilbert also sits on the AFL-CIO Political Committee, Legislative/Policy Committee, and the Committee on Women Workers.

Rinaldi and Gilbert occupy two of the 12 positions on the NATCA National Executive Board (NEB). There will be seven new members of the NEB when the term begins Sept. 1: Curt Howe (Region X, representing most of NATCA’s non-controller aviation safety professional bargaining units), Aaron Merrick (Central Region), Rich Santa (Eastern Region), Drew MacQueen (Great Lakes Region), Mick Devine (New England Region) Eddie DeLisle (Northwest Mountain Region), and Joel Ortiz (Western Pacific Region). Devine, Howe, and Ortiz won their respective regional elections, while Merrick, Santa, MacQueen, and DeLisle ran unopposed.

Incumbents who were unopposed during this election and are returning to the NEB with Rinaldi and Gilbert are Clint Lancaster (Alaskan Region), Jim Marinitti (Southern Region), and Andrew LeBovidge (Southwest Region). All three will be serving their second terms.

MORE INFORMATION: Thom Metzger, Director of Public Affairs; 202-355-8530, tmetzger@natcadc.org.

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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, four Department of Defense air traffic facilities, and 102 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.