Michael Huerta

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Michael Huerta
Michael P. Huerta.jpg
Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration
Assumed office
December 6, 2011
Acting: December 6, 2011 – January 7, 2013
President Barack Obama
Deputy Michael Whitaker
Preceded by Randy Babbitt
Personal details
Born (1956-11-18) November 18, 1956 (age 57)
Riverside, California, U.S.
Alma mater University of California, Riverside
Princeton University

Michael Peter Huerta (born November 18, 1956) is the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration.[1] He was confirmed as deputy Administrator on June 23, 2010, and became acting Administrator upon the resignation of Randy Babbitt on December 6, 2011. He was confirmed as Administrator on January 7, 2013.


He received his bachelor's degree in political science from the University of California-Riverside and his master's in international relations from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University.

Huerta was commissioner of New York City's Department of Ports, International Trade and Commerce from 1986 to 1989. In January 1989, he left to serve as the executive director of the Port of San Francisco until 1993. From 1993 to 1998 he held senior positions at the United States Department of Transportation in Washington, D.C., serving under Secretaries Federico Peña and Rodney E. Slater during the Clinton Administration.

Huerta worked as a Managing Director with the Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the 2002 Olympic Winter Games,[2] prepared Salt Lake City's transportation outlets for the Olympics. Huerta was involved in the planning and construction of a variety of Olympic transportation facilities, as well as the development of a highly successful travel demand management system that made sure that the transportation system operated safely and efficiently.

From 2002 to 2009, Huerta was Group President of the Transportation Solutions Group at Affiliated Computer Services, a company later acquired by Xerox, specializing in business processes and information technology.[3]

Federal Aviation Administration[edit]

President Obama nominated Huerta as Deputy Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). On January 26, 2010, Huerta appeared before Congress[4] for his confirmation hearing,[5] but his Congressional confirmation was held up by Texas Senator John Cornyn over fighter drones patrolling the Mexico–United States border near Corpus Christi.[6] Huerta waited over five months for his congressional confirmation; on June 23, 2010, he became Deputy Administrator of the FAA.

Huerta became Acting Administrator of the FAA upon the resignation of Randy Babbitt on December 6, 2011.[7] As Acting Administrator, Huerta helped oversee the operation of the National Airspace System and a $16 billion budget.

On March 27, 2012, President Barack Obama formally nominated him to serve as the next permanent Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration for a term of five years; the nomination was subsequently confirmed by the U.S. Senate on January 1, 2013.[8][9]

In December 2013, under Huerta's supervision, the Federal Aviation Administration selected six public entities to develop unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) research and test sites around the country.[10]

In June 2014, Huerta was named one of 8 Most Influential People in Drones.[11]


Political offices
Preceded by
Randy Babbitt
Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration
Acting: 2011–2013