In This Issue:
ATCA Annual: Take Control of a Changing Airspace
The Air Traffic Control Association (ATCA) hosted its annual conference and exposition last week in Washington, D.C., featuring an array of aviation topics. With the theme, "Take Control of a Changing Airspace," the conference's planners sought to make it a thought-leadership forum where all sectors of air traffic control (ATC) and air traffic management (ATM) have a seat at the table.
Left to right: Moderator Fran Hill, SVP of Operations, Leidos, and Chair, ATCA Board of Directors, and panelists Jon R. Damush, Sr. Director, New Business Ventures, Boeing NeXt, Martin Donnan, General Manager, Prestwick Centre, NATS, Paul Winstanley, Chair, Prospect ATCOs' Branch, Paul Rinaldi, President, NATCA, Teri Bristol, COO, Air Traffic Organization, FAA, and Matt Gilligan, Vice President Navigation, Weather and Services Mission Area, Raytheon.
NATCA President Paul Rinaldi participated on a panel, introduced by NATCA Safety Committee Chair Steve Hansen, titled "Stop, Collaborate, and Listen: ANSPs, Industry, and Labor." The panel focused on how working together in a collaborative environment is mutually beneficial for all involved, because it results in a safer, more efficient national and international airspace system. Collaboration becomes especially important with the rapid introduction of new entrants and technologies into the air traffic control system. Rinaldi told the audience, "Collaboration is about communication, and setting real expectations is always the key. When working together, early involvement is extremely important. If all parties can be on the front end of the operations and develop together what the expectations will be, operations can and will be streamlined."
Left to right: Moderator Trish Gilbert, Executive Vice President, NATCA, and panelists Tony Evans, Head of System Design Architecture, Airbus, Art Huber, Deputy Director, Air Force Research Laboratory, Frank Matus, Director, Digital Aviation Market Development - Americas, Thales, and Dr. Parimal Kopardekar, Acting Director, NASA Aeronautics Research Institute (NARI).
NATCA Executive Vice President Trish Gilbert also moderated a panel titled "The Art of the Possible: Ushering the NAS (National Airspace System) into the Age of Automation." "The airspace and the users that access, manage, and maintain it are evolving faster than ever," Gilbert said to open the panel. "As UTM (unmanned aircraft system traffic management) becomes a reality and we begin to integrate UTM and ATM airspace, we must design and implement automation technology that meets these challenges with innovative, cyber-secure solutions." The panelists discussed the steps and challenges to integrate UTM with ATM airspace, including challenges with technology and finding the right balance. They talked about the difficulty of transition planning because of the uncertainty of changes in the operating environment, and concluded with steps that need to be taken as an industry to ensure safety for the NAS as we move into the automation age.
Left to right: Michael Tien, Senior Counsel, Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, U.S. House of Representatives, Jose Ceballos, Director of Government Affairs, NATCA, and Lauren Orndorff, Legislative Assistant, Office of Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kan.
NATCA's Director of Government Affairs, Jose Ceballos, moderated a panel titled "Shutting Down the Next FAA Shutdown." The panel included Michael Tien and Lauren Orndorff, who have been working with Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Ore., Chairman of the House Transportation & Infrastructure (T&I) Committee, and Sen. Jerry Moran, R-Kan., respectively, on legislation supporting the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) . They discussed the damaging effects of the disruptive 35-day government shutdown and the importance of the "Aviation Funding Stability Act of 2019" (H.R. 1108 and S. 762). These two bills would utilize funding from the Airport and Airway Trust Fund in the event of another government-wide shutdown and ensure all FAA activities continue. "If the legislation is passed," said Ceballos, "the bill would fund all FAA activities, not just critical operations. That's really important and a key factor. This bill offers great support across the board for everyone within the FAA."
Left to right: Michele Merkle, Director, NAS Systems Engineering, FAA, and panelists Capt. Robert Goldman, Senior Manager, ATM, Delta Air Lines, Jeff Woods, National Program Management Organization (PMO) Representative, NATCA, and Rob Hunt, Technical Systems Program Manager, FAA.
NATCA National Program Management Organization (PMO) Representative Jeff Woods spoke on a panel titled "TBO: Setting the Trajectory of the Future NAS". Trajectory-based operation (TBO) is an ATM system to fly direct paths, putting flights on a virtually optimized path. TBO is not new, but it is now ready to be implemented throughout the NAS. The panelists discussed the steps the FAA must take to build its flow-management framework and how the industry will need to collaborate to help maximize airspace and airport capacity which will help set priorities. "We put all this infrastructure in place," said Woods, "and now we need to integrate it, which will be a big lift. The challenge will be getting our members and industry to embrace the new technology, instead of continuing with what they're comfortable with, even though it's efficient."
Michael Tamez with Raytheon's Jack McAuley
Andrew Rice (left) and Ryan Schile (center) with Raytheon's Jack McAuley
Ken Stanley with Raytheon's Jack McAuley
ATCA hosted an awards luncheon recognizing excellence in air traffic. NATCA members Michael Tamez from Southern California TRACON (SCT), Andrew Rice and Ryan Schile from Chicago O'Hare ATCT (ORD), and Ken Stanley from Ormond Beach ATCT (OMN), a NATCA-represented Federal Contract Tower, were all awarded with the Andy Pitas Aircraft Save Award, for providing flight assistance resulting in the safe recovery of an aircraft in distress through the application of exceptional air traffic control.

On receiving his award, Michael Tamez said, "I am truly humbled to even be nominated, let alone receive this award from such a prestigious organization. As I tell people all the time, I am just doing my job, and it’s an honor to serve the flying public."

Andrew Rice said, “I am greatly humbled and appreciative to have received this award with Ryan Schile from ATCA. It is an honor to be among the other fine controllers and aviation professionals being recognized for their commitment to safety."

Ryan Schile echoed the sentiments of his colleagues by saying, "Andy (Rice) and I have now been recognized twice for our actions that day. It is humbling and an honor I will always appreciate. I am proud of the job we did that day, certainly, but I’m more proud of the job our sisters and brothers do across the NAS every day. Each day we don’t make the news should be newsworthy."

Ken Stanley, who works for one of the many NATCA-represented Federal Contract Towers, said, “I am humbled to receive this award and I am sure any controller would have taken the same action. I was just doing my job. I would like to thank ATCA for the recognition and would like to congratulate all the award winners.”
Left to right: Jeff Woods, Mike Tamez, Jim Ullmann, Diane Ullmann, Leanne Hansen, Steve Hansen, Drew MacQueen, Paul Rinaldi, Trish Gilbert, Jeremy Thompson (NZALPA, Alliance VP), Paul Winstanley ( Chair, U.K. Prospect ATCOs’ Branch) , Dave Doerksen (RVP CATCA), Kelly Richardson, Joel Ortiz, Steve Weidner, Sam Adcock, Tom Adcock.
NATCA members had the opportunity to attend the Glen A. Gilbert Memorial Awards Banquet where FAA Deputy Administrator Dan Elwell received ATCA's highest honor. The Glen A. Gilbert Memorial Award recognizes the lifetime achievements of the best and brightest in aviation. NATCA President Paul Rinaldi was presented with the Glen A. Gilbert Award in 2016.
NATCA Collective: Open Season Ongoing
NATCA’s current open season for Union membership is an important opportunity for BUEs who currently aren't members to join us in solidarity. We want potential members and current members to better understand what NATCA is, who NATCA represents, and what we accomplish through our membership.

"We've had more than 230 members join NATCA during the first month of the campaign," said National Organizing Committee Chair John Bratcher. "That speak volumes to how valuable our Union is to others looking in."

We are a strong Union, but we can become stronger still, when other eligible BUEs join our family. You should see this fifth poster for our open membership enrollment period in your facilities.

Becoming a member has never been more important. Talk to your colleagues about getting involved today. Learn more at .
Dawn Forde, FacRep for the New York Aircraft Certification Office (EE1), shares what being a member of the #NATCAfamily has meant to her and why she joined: 

“When you are in an office environment and you have to devote 10, 15, 20 years of your life to an organization, you want to know that your work is appreciated, and it matters. Just being an employee is not good enough. 

"There are many different things that happen to us in life where we need others. And it’s a relief knowing that NATCA is there for you."

Membership enrollment is ongoing. Encourage your colleagues to join NATCA today--visit for more information.
NATCA Members Praised by the FAA Air Traffic Organization
Members of our NATCA family joined their FAA colleagues gathered at FAA headquarters in Washington to recognize extraordinary work of the employees of the FAA’s Air Traffic Organization (ATO).

“You’re some of the most highly skilled dedicated professionals in the world,” FAA ATO COO Teri Bristol said. “During crises we see just how lucky we are to have such skilled and determined professional colleagues.”

“We run the safest and most efficient system in the world,” FAA Administrator Steve Dickson said. “We are an organization that’s made up of people. It’s very important, while we are technically effective at our jobs, to take time to celebrate and recognize our peers’ exceptional performance. We have a great partnership with our union partners and we are glad to have them here today.”

NATCA Executive Vice President Trish Gilbert, AFGE Local 200 President Robert Challender, and other leaders of unions and groups representing those team members attended the ceremony to celebrate the achievements of the FAA employees recognized during the ceremony. Read more .
NATCA Policy Change: Cellular Service National Level Reimbursement Policy
The NATCA National Executive Board (NEB) discussed supporting labor-friendly wireless carriers and voted unanimously that effective Nov. 1, 2019, NATCA will provide reimbursement from the national level only for preferred wireless service providers. It was decided that a wireless service provider whose employees are represented nationally by an AFL-CIO union could be considered a NATCA-preferred wireless service provider. Currently, AT&T is the only major U.S. wireless carrier with a union-represented workforce. About half of AT&T's employees are union-represented, primarily by the Communications Workers of America and the International Brotherhood of-Electrical Workers. 

This policy applies only to members seeking reimbursement from the national level. It’s does not affect local reimbursement. If you have questions about this new policy, email .
Members Participate in Girls in Aviation Day
Girls in Aviation Day (GIAD) is a global event sponsored by Women in Aviation International. It is designed to introduce and educate girls of all ages to the many career choices and possibilities offered by the aerospace/aviation industry. NATCA members across the country took part in the festivities had the opportunity to share their experiences with thousands of girls.
"They were able to participate in hands-on activities," said Chrissy Lehnert, Dallas/Fort Worth TRACON (D10). "For air traffic control (ATC)-related activities, the girls learned how to spell their names using phonetics, listened to ATC on iPads, and used table tops to simulate the tower environment."
“GIAD is a wonderful learning experience for the girls and our controllers," said Jennifer Malloy, Cleveland Center (ZOB) member and coordinator for the GIAD Cleveland event. "It gives us a chance to provide education to our future generations of controllers, as well as the opportunity to meet our ATC users, including local and professional pilots.”

To take part in the next GIAD event near you, visit .
Capt. Tammie Jo Shults Speaks at the National Aeronautic Association Luncheon
NATCA Executive Vice President Trish Gilbert and Philadelphia ATCT (PHL) FacRep Chris Perks met Capt. Tammie Jo Shults and heard her riveting, emotional, and inspirational remarks at the National Aeronautic Association luncheon about her extraordinary life and career and the landing of Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 on April 17, 2018 at PHL, after debris from the catastrophic failure of one of its engines took out a window on the passenger jet and resulted in the death of one passenger. Capt. Shults spoke of the excellence of the crew, her training and experience, and the many challenges that had to be overcome to get the aircraft on the ground. She also discussed the life that was lost that day, passenger Jennifer Riordan.

Perks represented the controllers at PHL who--along with controllers from New York Center (ZNY)--cleared other air traffic in the area and guided Capt. Shults to PHL for an emergency landing. Capt. Shults praised the air traffic controllers who assisted her and the flight. “Thank you ATC for the great job,” she said.

One of the takeaways of that day, she said, was the experience of walking back into the cabin to be with the passengers after the landing and being surprised at what she saw. “These people certainly had cause to be frightened and upset,” she said. “But when I walked out of the cockpit, everyone was calm and quiet. And I think the value of human life was felt that day. Everyone was treating each other with the selflessness that we’re supposed to. We were able to return 148 people to their lives and their loved ones that day. We were not able to do that for Jennifer Riordan and that will always weigh heavy on my heart and on my crew. The survival of 148 never eclipses the loss of one.”

Capt. Shults’s new book is called “Nerves of Steel.” In it, ABC News Chief Global Affairs Correspondent Martha Raddatz writes of her, “She is a champion for not only women, but for all who want to be better, stronger, and more loving human beings.”
President Represents NATCA at AFL-CIO Executive Council Meeting
NATCA President Paul Rinaldi serves as a Vice President of the American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO). Rinaldi served in this role at the AFL-CIO's recent Executive Council meeting in Chicago. The Council discussed labor movement policy and short and long-term planning, including organizing, legislation, political activities, internal governance, and ongoing challenges and opportunities.

NATCA Special Counsel to the President Eugene Freedman presented the Transportation Sector report of the AFL-CIO Commission on the Future of Work and Unions.
NATCA News and Notes
NATCA Reloaded: Strengthening Our Union From Within
NATCA's Reloaded Committee recently met to talk about its offerings and activities to educate and inspire unionism in our Union's ranks. Chartered for the exclusive purpose of strengthening NATCA from within, the Reloaded Committee works to educate NATCA members on basic labor rights and the importance of the labor movement as a whole. Reloaded Committee members guide our Union in increasing the quality and number of leaders within NATCA through education and leadership coaching.
NEB Meets with Region X Detroit Airports District Office
NATCA’s National Executive Board (NEB) traveled to Detroit for the Strategic Leadership Meeting with FAA leadership. They discussed overarching issues affecting the workplace and work on maintaining collaboration throughout the National Airspace System. The NEB also had the opportunity to meet with members from the Region X Detroit Airports District Office, which has achieved 100 percent NATCA membership.
Peoria ATCT Members Talk Tower Issues
Peoria ATCT (PIA) members recently met with NATCA Executive Vice President Trish Gilbert and Great Lakes Regional Vice President Drew MacQueen. "We talked about a lot of important issues, including the state of our tower," said PIA FacRep Brady Seei. "We've had plans in the works to build a new tower for years, but nothing's been done, and Trish said she would look into it. We appreciated her taking the time to come and talk to us, and hear us out about our issues and concerns."
FacRep Takes Pride in Middle School Career Day
Raleigh Durham ATCT (RDU) FacRep Nick Stott recently participated in Moore Square Middle School Career Day, where he talked to students about how to become an air traffic controller and what the job is like. Stott was accompanied by a Delta pilot and an FAA inspector as part of their outreach efforts to spark interest in aviation careers in young people. 

Are you involved in outreach to youth? Tell us about it. Send your stories and pictures to .
Drone Advisory Committee Meets to Discuss Integration Issues
NATCA Executive Vice President Trish Gilbert and NATCA Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) National Rep Steve Weidner participated in a meeting of the FAA Drone Advisory Committee (DAC). The DAC continued its public conversation about how its members can collaborate on important issues like remote ID, technical challenges, security, recreational operations, and waivers. The DAC is a broad-based, long-term Federal advisory committee that provides the FAA with advice on key drone integration issues.  Click here to watch a recording of the meeting's live stream on the FAA's YouTube channel.
The Global Air Traffic Controllers Alliance
Members of the Global Air Traffic Controllers Alliance (“The Alliance”) held an executive meeting and created the Alliance mission statement and a tagline encompassing the group’s mission: “Access to Expertise.” 

“The Alliance serves as industry's access to the front-line worker in aviation safety,” said NATCA President Paul Rinaldi. “Our working together will allow us to start and build relationships with like-minded groups all around the world.

“We have a very collaborative relationship with our employer in America, but not all the countries in the Alliance can say the same. We look forward to working together to help those other member unions build a collaborative relationship with their employers/ANSPs.”
The Alliance is a coalition of labor unions representing aviation safety professionals from the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, Spain, and New Zealand. Leaders of these unions launched The Alliance at the World ATM in Madrid, Spain, in March 2018. The member unions work together to meet both individual and shared challenges, raise important safety issues to a global platform, and communicate with one another in a spirit of solidarity and unity. Click here to learn more about The Alliance.
Members Host Solidarity Event in Kansas City
NATCA members in the Kansas City area gathered for a successful solidarity event at the Chicken N Pickle entertainment complex. Among the NATCA leaders who spoke to the several dozen members attending the event was NATCA President Emeritus John Carr. Attendees and their families enjoyed the venue's pickleball courts and a variety of yard games.
NATCA Members Present at the IFATCA Americas Region Meeting
Executive Vice-President of the Americas Region and NATCA President Emeritus John Carr, NATCA New England Regional Vice President Mick Devine, and Safety Committee Chair Steve Hansen recently represented our Union at the 36th IFATCA Americas Region Meeting in Iguazu Falls, Argentina. 

Devine spoke to attendees about the stop-and-go funding issues in the United States, the state of the U.S. National Airspace System, and NATCA’s strategies for addressing these important issues. Hansen gave a presentation about the Just Culture model that is used in the United States called the Air Traffic Safety Action Program (ATSAP). With ATSAP, individuals can feel free to report errors and help organizations learn from mistakes. Carr presided over the meeting, which concluded on International Day of the Controller. 

Read more about the meeting on IFATCA’s website:

Read Carr’s posts about the meeting on Facebook: 
Sara Nelson Thanks Controllers for Continued Professionalism
NATCA EVP Trish Gilbert was proud to support union sister Sara Nelson, the International President of the Assocation of Flight Attendants-CWA, as she addressed the Aero Club of Washington. Also photographed with Trish and Sara was CBS News Transportation Correspondent Kris Van Cleave.

In her comments, Sara thanked air traffic controllers and other aviation safety professionals for their professionalism during 35-day shutdown. She said the aviation community cannot allow another government shutdown. And she said that AFA joins NATCA is supporting H.R. 1108, legislation that would ensure the FAA wouldn’t shutdown if there were another government shutdown.
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Benefit Spotlight: American Hearing Benefits
American Hearing Benefits is a convenient hearing benefits program which provides access to free hearing consultations and significant discounts on hearing aids through our nationwide network of hearing professionals. As a member of NATCA, you and your family (parents included) are entitled to the following hearing savings through American Hearing Benefits:

  • Free annual hearing consultations for you and your family.
  • Free one-year supply of batteries.
  • One year of free office visits.
  • Free Deluxe Warranty Plan, including loss and damage.
  • 60-day trial period.
  • Financing plans available.

For more information, please visit the NATCA benefits website  to take advantage of these great members-only savings.