Steve Dickson, the administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, has resigned, CBS News confirms. He will leave the administration at the end of March.
In an email to his employees obtained by CBS News, Dickson wrote that he wants to “devote my full time and attention” to his family.
“As I wrote in my letter to President Biden, it is time to go home. Although my heart is heavy, I am tremendously proud of everything we have accomplished together over the past several years,” he said. “The agency is in a better place than it was two years ago, and we are positioned for great success. It has been the privilege of a lifetime to serve alongside you.”
In his announcement, Dickson said he had been in the aviation industry for 43 years. He was nominated to lead the FAA by then-President Donald Trump in 2019.
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg called Dickson “the FAA’s steady and skilled captain.”
“We are grateful for his years of service to our country and his lifelong dedication to making sure our aviation system is the best and safest in the world,” he wrote in a statement to CBS News.
The FAA said it will work with the White House to find Dickson’s replacement.
Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, the FAA has faced many obstacles. In 2020, it had to navigate a sharp plunge in air travel as much of the county and the world went into lockdown. Since then, it has dealt with thousands of, many of whom do not want to comply with federal law that requires all passengers wear a mask while onboard a plane. The record number of onboard incidents, as well as waves of COVID-19 infections, has resulted in for flight crews.
Most recently, the FAA has been navigating the launch ofand how they would affect air travel.
Errol Barnett contributed reporting.