Airline executive appointed as FAA deputy administrator

May 16, 2013

Former airline executive Michael G. Whitaker, who most recently served as a consultant to a company that operates India’s largest domestic airline, has been tapped by President Barack Obama to fill the deputy administrator’s post at the FAA.

The White House announced Whitaker’s appointment, among others, on May 15.

"We are pleased the president has appointed someone who has spent so much of his career in the aviation industry to fill the role of deputy FAA administrator,” said AOPA President Craig Fuller. “Michael Whitaker's extensive experience in the airline industry, both in the United States and abroad, gives him an excellent understanding of the national air transportation system, particularly the issues facing commercial air carriers. We look forward to sharing the general aviation perspective with him and working together for the good of all segments of the aviation community."

Whitaker, according to a summary of his career released by the White House, worked for Trans World Airlines from 1991 to 1994 as general counsel for regulatory and international affairs, and held various posts at United Airlines from 1994 to 2009, where he became senior vice president for alliances, international, and regulatory affairs.

Whitaker served from 2009 to 2011 as an executive for InterGlobe Enterprises, a transportation management company that operates, among other interests, IndiGo, described on the company’s website as India’s largest and fastest-growing airline. He was a board member and consultant to InterGlobe from 2011 to 2012.

Whitaker earned a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Louisville, and a law degree from Georgetown University.