Honor Reflects Vital Work Performed By the 20,000 NATCA-Represented Aviation Safety Professionals, Particularly During Government Shutdown

WASHINGTON – The National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) is proud that 12 of its members have been invited by their members of Congress to be guests at this year’s State of the Union address. Each member of Congress is allowed to bring one guest to tomorrow night’s address by the President. Traditionally, members of Congress choose guests to call attention to a particular issue and, this year, 11 air traffic controllers and one air traffic control staff support specialist guest will highlight the vital work that is being performed by nearly 20,000 NATCA-represented aviation safety professionals.

“These invitations are a testament to the respect that our members and our professions have earned on Capitol Hill and across the country”, said NATCA President Paul Rinaldi, who will be the guest of U.S. Senator Tim Kaine (Va.). “NATCA has worked diligently to elevate the level of professionalism among air traffic controllers and other aviation safety professionals, expecting the highest standards for ourselves and our co-workers,” Rinaldi said. “That professionalism was never more evident than during the longest government shutdown in American history. Despite personal hardship and stress, uncertainty and fatigue, over 15,000 NATCA members went to work, did their jobs at the highest level, and continued to demonstrate to America that they are consummate safety professionals. On Tuesday, 12 members of Congress will honor that professionalism. We are deeply grateful for this experience and opportunity.”

The 12 NATCA members who have been invited to the State of the Union will represent each of the organization’s 20,000 aviation safety professionals and the incredible work that they do every day to operate and oversee the safest, most efficient airspace system in the world.

 

NATCA MEMBERS ATTENDING:        

Paul Rinaldi (NATCA President and Dulles International Airport), guest of U.S. Senator Tim Kaine (Va.);

Jeff Aulbach (Boston Air Route Traffic Control Center), guest of U.S. Congresswoman Annie Kuster (N.H.);

Ronan Byrne (New York Terminal Radar Approach Control), guest of U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer (N.Y.);

Allen Fritz (Reading Air Traffic Control Tower), guest of U.S. Congressman Matt Cartwright (Pa.);

Jamie Green (Providence Air Traffic Control Tower), guest of U.S. Congressman David Cicilline (R.I.);

Toby Hauck (Chicago Air Route Traffic Control Center), guest of U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (Ill.);

Shyan Lasater-Bailey (Palm Springs Air Traffic Control Tower), guest of U.S. Congressman Mark Takano (Calif.);

Chrissy Lewis (Joshua Control Facility), guest of U.S. Congresswoman Katie Hill (CA);

Kevin Maney (New York Terminal Radar Approach Control), guest of U.S. Congressman Tom Suozzi (NY);

Linda McCray (Washington Air Route Traffic Control Center), guest of U.S. Congresswoman Jennifer Wexton (VA);

Alex Navarro (Seattle Air Route Traffic Control Center), guest of U.S. Senator Patty Murray (WA); and

Trisha Pesiri-Dybvik (Santa Barbara Air Traffic Control Tower), guest of U.S. Senator Kamala Harris (CA).

 

MORE INFORMATION: Doug Church, Deputy Director of Public Affairs; 301-346-8245, dchurch@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, 4 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.