In This Issue:
NATCA Collective: Open Season ENDING!!!
The final few weeks of NATCA’s Collective Campaign begin. During the first two months of the campaign, the membership ranks of our Union have grown with 358 new members. This remarkable growth is not surprising because we all know the great strength of our Union’s collective power, the remarkable benefits of NATCA membership, and the wonderful union family that is NATCA. 

This campaign’s open season membership enrollment period is scheduled to end on Dec. 2. Time is quickly running out for eligible new members to join our great Union without paying an initiation fee. NATCA last did an open season five years ago, and there is no telling when we might conduct another.

You are the members of NATCA and the lifeblood of our Union. The more we grow, the stronger we become, together. Talk to your colleagues about getting involved today. Again, this great opportunity ends Dec. 2. Learn more at
Attend the Federal Virtual Benefits Fair Through Dec. 9
From Nov. 11 to Dec. 9, the Office of Personnel Management is planning a Virtual Benefits Fair (VBF) to give information about FEDVIP, FEHB, FSAFEDS, and the FLTCIP to all federal employees who have a non-traditional schedule or are in locations or roles that do not allow for a traditional health fair. 

The VBF is available at any time, day or night. It will include three live chat days with all of the carriers. Learn more at .
ITC Tips
Protect Yourself From Spam
Recently, attacks have been targeting NATCA members’ email accounts. Be vigilant of any emails asking you to do something that is outside of any normal activity. Messages are often sent to email accounts as part of spam or phishing schemes. The message may look legitimate. If it seems suspicious in any way, it probably is.

The links often lead to fake websites that are designed to steal your password or personal information. Every time a user falls victim to this attack by giving away their login info, they put themselves and everyone in their contact list at risk of attack. It takes Union resources to help members secure their computers and email accounts once they have been compromised.

If you receive any communication asking you to take some action on your NATCA email account, please do not click on any link or follow any instructions. Don’t click on links unless you are 100% certain they lead somewhere you want to go. Please forward the email as an attachment to the NATCA Information Technology Committee for assistance at .
Update on Catalina OS Installation
To all Mac users: NATCA's IT Committee has completed testing the latest release of OSX: Catalina. At this time, we have found no issues with any apps NATCA uses (such as Unionware, GATS, etc.). At this time, we are recommending that you go ahead and upgrade your OSX to Catalina. If you are still on an older version such as Sierra and need assistance with the upgrade, please contact NATCA IT Specialist Matt Heer. 

The update can take some time, upwards of 45 minutes, to download and install. You will see some new security prompts. This is a function of the operating system (OS) and is to be expected. If you have any questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to reach out to Matt at
NATCA and NCF Support Snowdrop Foundation
Many childhood cancer patients demonstrate an indestructible attitude and spirit while battling their life-threatening illnesses. That’s why the hearty snowdrop flower is the symbol of the Houston-based Snowdrop Foundation and why the organization caught the attention of the NATCA Charitable Foundation (NCF). NCF has made Snowdrop one of the four charities that will benefit from money it raises as part of NATCA’s 18th Biennial Convention in Houston (May 27-29, 2020). 

Check out to learn more, and stay tuned for more information about this charity, the important work it does in assisting patients and families, and how you can get involved. NATCA supports the organization’s mission of providing scholarships for college-bound pediatric cancer patients and childhood cancer survivors while raising awareness and funding for continued research to cure childhood cancer.
Registration Ongoing for NATCA's 18th Biennial Convention
Registration continues for our 18th Biennial Convention in Houston. If you haven't registered yet, what are you waiting for? May will be here before you know it. Don't miss out on all the activities we have planned just for you!

Click here to register. Have convention registration questions? Email .

For more information, please visit
NATCA Celebrates Aviation History Month
November is Aviation History Month, and NATCA is highlighting important labor milestones related to aviation history.

The certification of NATCA on June 19, 1987 by the Federal Labor Relations Authority to be the exclusive bargaining unit representative of FAA air traffic controllers was one of the most important dates in aviation history.

The nation’s air traffic control system struggled mightily after Aug. 5, 1981, the day President Reagan fired more than 11,000 striking members of the Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization (PATCO). By the end of 1985, the number of daily flights had risen by 1,000 since 1981 but certified controller staffing dropped from 13,311 to 8,315, while reported close calls rose by 65 percent. Controllers were under more stress. Their equipment regularly failed. Working conditions were a mess.

Enter the new union, NATCA, which began to form under the steeled and determined leadership of people like fired and jailed PATCO member John Thornton (pictured, with MEBA President Gene DeFries in 1987 after controllers voted for NATCA representation), and New York TRACON (N90) controller Barry Krasner.

NATCA’s early founders fought hard to restore controllers’ place in organized labor, knowing that only a collective voice would make the system safer and protect the men and women who were entrusted with the safety of the flying public from the front lines. By 1986, it was clear to the re-organizing controllers that they wanted to be involved in more than just negotiating working conditions. They envisioned an organization that would exercise clout in such matters as their retirement, which is covered by statute not collective bargaining agreement, stress reduction, and restoring a program to protect them for reporting operational errors. The FAA had canceled that program in 1980. 

They wanted a voice in safety issues. A midair collision on Nov. 11, 1985 over Northern New Jersey brought aviation safety into national focus. Although controllers were not judged to have been at fault, the accident demonstrated to controllers how much they needed an organization to speak out on their behalf. 

MEBA gave NATCA early backing. DeFries was asked what he wanted in return. “We don’t want anything,” he said. “We just want to see you guys organized. It’s good for labor.” 

By any measure, the National Airspace System became safer with the re-organization of the nation’s air traffic controller workforce and its certification on June 19, 1987.
Wall Calendars: Coming to a Facility Near You
POCKET CALENDARS - Our Union's National Executive Board has decided to no longer make NATCA pocket calendars available for 2020. At a time when almost everyone carries a mobile device with a calendar, it has become prohibitively expensive to produce the small number of calendars that were being requested in recent years.

WALL CALENDARS - However, NATCA will continue to make w all calendars available for 2020. NATCA's Public Affairs Department currently is coordinating with all FacReps regarding distribution. The plan is to ship the calendars to all facilities before the end of the year. Stay tuned for more details from your local President.
Safe Skies For All Conference
Left to right: Moderator and ALPA Aviation Safety Chairman Capt. Steve Jangelis with panelists NATCA President Paul Rinaldi, A4A Vice President, NextGen and New Entrants Andy Cebula, SpaceX Senior Counsel and Senior Director of Spaceflight Policy Caryn Schenewerk, Jacksonville Aviation Authority, Cecile Spaceport Director Todd Lindner, and moderator and Commercial Spaceflight Federation President Eric Stallmer.
NATCA President Paul Rinaldi participated on a panel focused on collaboration as a part of the Air Line Pilots Association, International (ALPA) and Commercial Spaceflight Federation (CSF) “Safe Skies for All” conference. The participants of this panel, “Integration of Commercial Space in NAS Operations -- Collaborating on the Future of Space Flight,” discussed the steps of collaboration and consensus for the industry and new entrants of commercial space into the National Airspace System (NAS).

Rinaldi spoke about the need to modernize the air traffic control system in the U.S. “The funding system is 100% broken,” he said. “We are on a continuing resolution (CR) right now, and it’s difficult to create long-term plans and sustain a very safe, efficient aviation system. Everything we have goes into running the day-to-day.”

Rinaldi said that it takes forever to adapt to technology and modernization, all the while technology is evolving so quickly. “We are focused on running today’s operation as it is expanding. We are trying to modernize, but we’re doing it slowly. We did HRAM (Hazard Risk Assessment and Management) Human-in-the-Loop (HITL) testing approximately four years ago, and it just sits because of lack of funding. HRAM and DataComm are real technologies we can apply in our facilities to help streamline airspace.”

Airlines have vested interests in these technologies as well because they don’t want delays and cancelled flights. “What worked 30 years ago, is not working now,” said Rinaldi. Technology is evolving rapidly, and other countries are doing a much better job than us in modernizing the air traffic control system, because they are able to adapt and do things more rapidly. There has to be a different way to fund these new technologies and the future of new entrants.”
Left to right: Moderator and Commercial Spaceflight Federation President Eric Stallmer with panelists FAA Air Traffic Operations Manager Duane Freer, Commercial Spaceflight Federation Senior Advisor James Muncy, Virgin Galactic Head of Quality and Regulatory Compliance Greg Fredenburg, NATCA Director of Safety and Technology Jim Ullmann, and ALPA Commercial Space SME and United 767 Pilot First Officer (F/O) Stephen Browning.
NATCA Director of Safety and Technology Jim Ullmann participated on a safety panel at the same conference. The participants on the panel, titled, “Accommodation of Commercial Space -- Streamlining Space Launches through Regulation and Policy” each had the opportunity to discuss their role, concerns, and next steps on the accommodation of commercial space into the National Airspace System, as the representative for their organization and an active contributor to the aviation industry.

NATCA members are on the front lines, exhibiting their commitment to safety 30-35,000 times a day. “We are involved at every level in the FAA, and in every program you can imagine,” said Ullmann. “Commercial space is no different, and we appreciate the collaborative partnership with industry and the FAA. At the same time, there’s 150-160 ongoing projects in aviation, including modernization projects, which results in limited bandwidth, resources, and training for our members, and then we talk about integrating commercial space. It’s more complicated than getting things done quicker for our workforce.” 

Ullmann said that controllers need decision support tools to see the full benefit of NextGen, and not just awareness tools. “We have to be quicker about instituting new technology and not taking 8-10 years to implement,” he said.
NATCA News and Notes
Runway Safety Lights Technology Fully Implemented
The FAA announced recently that Runway Status Lights (RWSL), the first technology to provide direct warning to pilots and ground operators about potential runway conflicts, is now operational at all 20 sites approved to receive the ground-breaking technology. A report on the effectiveness of RWSL at the 15 airports where it was operational in 2017 found an overall 52% reduction in the average runway incursion rate, with 15,484 potential saves by the technology.

"The RWSL system provides an immediate indication of potentially unsafe situations without interfering with air traffic operations,” said Runway Safety Rep Bridget Singratanakul (Gee). "This additional layer of runway safety has proven itself time and time again. My hope would be that more airports will be able to benefit from technologies like this."
Thales Raises Money In Support of NCF
The NATCA Charitable Foundation (NCF) teamed up last month with NATCA Corporate Member Thales to host a successful evening reception event for 250 guests in Washington, D.C. The event was held in conjunction with the Air Traffic Control Association (ATCA) Annual Conference and Exhibition. NCF and Thales are working to make this an annual event.

NATCA President Paul Rinaldi expressed his thanks to Thales for organizing this event and their support of NCF. “We extend our thanks and gratitude to Thales for being a great partner to our Union and the NATCA Charitable Foundation. The money Thales helped raise will allow NCF to continue its important work. We hope that NCF and Thales will continue to partner together on this event in coming years.”

NCF President Corrie Conrad also thanked Thales. She stated, “We have appreciated the support of Thales with this event. The money raised at this event will benefit NCF, Honor Flight, which is dedicated to providing veterans with honor and closure, and Challenge Air, which builds confidence and self-esteem in children and youth with special needs through the gift of flight.”

Thales made a $2,000 donation to NCF to increase the total amount raised at this event to $10,000. Thales also donated a drone and an Apple Watch for the event’s raffle. The event this year raised 25 percent more than was raised at the same event last year.

Learn more about Challenge Air here:
Learn more about Honor Flight here:
LEAP: Leadership Experience Acceleration Project
NATCA leaders from all over the country gathered with longtime lead instructor Scott Airitam, Leadership Systems in Warrenton, Va., for the Leadership Experience Acceleration Project (LEAP) class. Assisting Airitam as the NATCA Lead instructor was Northwest Mountain RVP Alex Navarro III and the course’s three newest instructors, Jenny Benjamin (Denver/Centennial ATCT, APA), Sarah Grampp (Kansas City Center, ZKC), and Tony Walsh (Minneapolis Center, ZMP). In this course, NATCA leaders and activists are taught principle-centered leadership skills and other tools to better serve the members of our Union. Southern RVP Jim Marinitti also assisted with the course.

“This class represents an amazing group of leaders," said Benjamin. “One of the major takeaways of the class is to challenge yourself to be better. I'm honored to be an instructor for LEAP, always growing and learning."
NATCA Hosts Representative Training
NATCA’s most recent Representative Training (RT-1) class had 27 participants. NATCA Executive Vice President Trish Gilbert spoke to the attendees and answered their questions. The course was taught by Nick Daniels (Fort Worth Center, ZFW), John Bratcher (Fort Smith ATCT, FSM), Andreas Sanchez (Dallas/Fort Worth ATCT, DFW), and Region X Vice President (RVP) Curt Howe.

“The class definitely showcased the talent and passion that is a driving force in our Union,” said Sanchez. 

“The leaders attending the class truly embraced the ‘Lean Forward’ mentality and will help take this Union to new heights,” Daniels added. 
As well, Region X members in attendance had the opportunity to meet with Howe and Great Lakes Region Engineer Facility President Troy Swanberg. "We spent some time going through portions of the contract that are more pertinent to Region X members," said Swanberg. "We talked about work schedules, telework, and different types of leave that affect our work more. It gave the Region X attendees a chance to really dig into those subjects and learn the history and practices."

Visit  and go to the “Events” menu tab to see available NATCA Academy courses for the remainder of 2019 and 2020 and register.
Seattle Region X Members Host a Solidarity Event and Lunch Briefing with NATCA EVP
NATCA Executive Vice President Trish Gilbert spoke with Seattle Region X Engineer Northwest Mountain (ENM) members at a solidarity event on Oct. 30, and led a lunchtime informational discussion at the Northwest Mountain Regional Office on Oct. 31.

On Oct. 30, Seattle TRACON (S46) FacRep and Western Washington Northwest Mountain (NNM) Legislative Rep Neil Miller and former S46 FacRep Jared Mike joined in the solidarity event with Gilbert. Miller provided a legislative update to the members, and both Miller and Mike answered ENM member questions and concerns.

The next day, more than 50 ENM members and prospective members attended the lunch briefing at the Northwest Mountain (ANM) Regional Office. Gilbert provided an in-depth explanation of the current affairs at NATCA and impacts to the federal labor force. "Our members were very appreciative that Trish took the time from her busy schedule to visit our local. She provided valuable information on current events in Washington and shared NATCA's efforts on our behalf," said ENM President Don Schmeichel.

ENM is the largest Region X local with 196 NATCA members representing seven bargaining units: Aircraft Certification Service (AIR), Airports (ARP), Finance and Management (AFN), Engineers and Architects (E&A), Aviation Technical Systems Specialists (ATSS), AT Staff Specialists, and Flight Procedures.
NATCA's Annual Committee Chairs Meeting
NATCA recently hosted its annual committee chairs meeting in Austin, Texas. NATCA President Paul Rinaldi, Executive Vice President Trish Gilbert, and the entire National Executive Board also attended this two-day meeting.

The agenda included a committee roundtable, the state of NATCA, an IT update, implicit bias training, a NATCA staff briefing, NATCA Constitution/CBA, and the budget process/expenses.

The committee roundtable part of the meeting gave each of NATCA’s committee chairs the opportunity to thoroughly brief everyone on their committee and its activities.
FacRep Speaks to Local College Students About Unionism
Atlanta TRACON (A80) FacRep Jacob James recently spoke as part of a Labor Management Relations class at West Georgia Technical College, lending his experience as a union leader for NATCA to enrich the course. Professor Walt Edwards invited James to speak about topics including the PATCO strike and today’s unions. James covered the content in two parts, describing the air traffic control profession and NATCA as the union that represents aviation safety professionals. 

“I used some cool air traffic videos from local operations as conversation starters and discussed a day in the life of a FacRep,” James said. “It went very well, especially since I have been invited to come back.” 
Controller Helps to Spark Interest in Aviation for the Youth
Controller and NATCA Secretary at Camarillo ATCT (CMA) Jackie Babenco is passionate about outreach events that help ignite and grow interest in aviation in the next generation. She recently helped coordinate setup for Camarillo Airport’s annual aviation career day, with more than 600 students in attendance. She also presented at "Girls, Inc," a non-profit organization with the central goal of empowering and inspiring girls and young women about careers in aviation, and volunteered at this year’s EAA Oshkosh AirVenture event to help educate future potential aviators. 
Members Participate in Aviation Education and Career Expo
Washington Center (ZDC) members Nolan Anthony and Adso Acosta joined NATCA Technical Representative Liaison Matt Sullivan and other local aviation professionals and enthusiasts on Nov. 1 for the ProJet Aviation Education & Career Expo at Leesburg Executive Airport in Virginia. The event is geared towards high school and college students with a focus to introduce them to the vast array of career opportunities within the aviation industry. The Expo consisted of industry leaders, vendors, aircraft displays, guest speakers, prizes, demonstrations, and scholarship opportunities to help launch students’ aviation careers.

Are you involved in outreach to youth about how much you love your career in aviation? Tell us about it! Send your stories to .
NATCA Disaster Response Committee:
There When You Need Them
NATCA’s Disaster Response Committee (DRC) stands ready to help during any natural or human-made emergency. The DRC’s primary function is to get members (and their families) back on their feet.

“Our goal is always for anyone being evacuated to have a safe place to stay. Our primary goal is to get people housed with other members, or in a dire situation, into a hotel,” said DRC chair Tom Flanary. 

As emergencies can happen at anytime, the DRC asks NATCA members to reach out if any disaster affects you or someone at your facility. Call 561-571-2541 or email at . Learn more and give to the Disaster Relief Fund at .
Store Item of the Week: Beanie Hat
Features of this product:  Our NATCA beanie hats will keep your head warm from the cold weather this winter. The hats are 100% acrylic, one-size-fits-all, and measures approximately 8.5 inches long. Colors are available in black, navy, charcoal, and orange. Union-made in the United States.

Price:  $15. Ships in three-four weeks.
To view and purchase the item, click here

Cuff Beanie Hats are also available, priced $13 apiece. Click here to view and purchase.

Select USPS or UPS as your shipping preference on your orders. To check on stock availability or for further assistance, call 800-266-0895 or email .
Benefits Spotlight: SkyOne ATM at the NATCA National Office
The next time you visit NATCA's National Headquarters, you can do all your banking. A SkyOne ATM has been installed.

 SkyOne goes above and beyond to fit your personal, professional, or even your local NATCA needs. Check them out at . Let SkyOne make your life easier. It will change the way you think about banking!  SkyOne understands your career and lifestyle and even provides relief in the event of layoffs or furloughs.
SkyOne gives complimentary consultations regarding Thrift Savings Plans (TSP), Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS), Federal Employee Retirement Systems (FERS), Federal Group Life Insurance (FEGLI) and Federal Employee Long Term Care Insurance Program (FELTCIP). Complimentary seminars on financial planning are also offered.

Not a member? You can   join online   and start enjoying the benefits of SkyOne membership.

For more information, please visit the NATCA benefits website  to take advantage of these great members-only savings.
The NATCA National Executive Board in front of the SkyOne ATM in the NATCA National Office.