Aviation News

December 6, 2011

FAA Administrator Babbitt Resigns After Drunk Driving Arrest

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By: Matt Molnar
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In a statement published by the FAA late Tuesday afternoon, the agency’s Administrator Randy Babbitt announced his resignation. Babbitt had been arrested for drunk driving over the weekend.

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Today I submitted my resignation to Secretary Ray LaHood and it has been accepted. Serving as FAA Administrator has been an absolute honor and the highlight of my professional career. But I am unwilling to let anything cast a shadow on the outstanding work done 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by my colleagues at the FAA. They run the finest and safest aviation system in the world and I am grateful that I had the opportunity to work alongside them. I am confident in their ability to successfully carry out all of the critical safety initiatives underway and the improvements that the FAA has planned. I also want to thank Secretary LaHood for his leadership and dedication to the safety of the traveling public.

[UPDATE 530pm ET] A few minutes later, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood issued a statement thanking Babbitt for his service.

As FAA Administrator, Randy Babbitt has been a dedicated public servant and outstanding leader. I’m proud to say that we have the safest aviation system in the world, and thanks to Randy’s stewardship, it became safer and stronger. He worked tirelessly to improve relations with the labor community and bolstered employee engagement among his 49,000 colleagues at the FAA. He led the FAA’s efforts to improve pilot training and enhance safety for the traveling public, as well as those that work in aviation. On behalf of the American people, I thank him for his service and his leadership.