Edward L. Bolton, Jr.

Chief of Staff

Ed Bolton

Edward (Ed) L. Bolton, Jr. was appointed FAA Chief of Staff in November 2023. Bolton is a retired United States Air Force Major General. He previously served as a senior advisor to the Aerospace Corporation CEO. He is also a co-founder of Space Workforce 2030, through which the Aerospace Corporation and thirty other space-oriented companies, collaborate to champion STEM activities, find aerospace engineering internships and increase space industry career opportunities for diverse individuals.

Bolton also served at the Aerospace Corporation as Senior Vice President of the Defense Systems Group. He retired from Aerospace in March 2019. From 2013-2016 Bolton was the Assistant Administrator for the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) at the FAA where he was responsible for leading the modernization of the National Airspace System—the world’s largest and most complex aviation system. 

During his military career, Bolton commanded the Spacelift Range Squadron, then the Spacelift Operations Group, both at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. He later became the Spacelift Wing Commander at Patrick Air Force Base in Florida. He also completed assignments as the Director of Systems Engineering at the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) and as the Director of Air Force Space and Cyber operations at the Pentagon. While in program management, he led the Satellite and Launch Systems Program Office and the Space Launch and Range Systems Program Office at the Space and Missile Systems Center at Los Angeles Air Force Base. He also served on the White House Staff in two administrations as a director on the National Security Council. He retired from the Air Force in 2013 after serving as the Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Budget where he managed the Air Force’s $165B budget.

During his time as commander at Patrick Air Force Base, the unit won the General Robert Herres trophy for its selection as the top Space Wing in the Air Force. While at Los Angeles Air Base, his program office was selected as the Best Program Office in Space Acquisition by the Air Force Association. Bolton is also the recipient of both the NRO Leadership Award, and the NRO Gold Medal. In 2023, the SWF2030 team was selected for the Trustees’ Award, the highest honor the Aerospace Corporation awards. 

Bolton served on the Board of Directors of the Virginia Commercial Space Flight Authority. He was also on the Commercial Space Transportation Advisory Committee under the Department of Transportation. He has also been a member of the Board of Directors of the Campagna Center, a not-for-profit community service organization located in Alexandria, Virginia. 

Bolton earned a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering from the University of New Mexico and holds two Master of Science degrees. He holds an MS degree in systems management from the University of Southern California, and an MS degree in national security strategy from the National War College, where he was a distinguished graduate. He is also a distinguished graduate of the Air Command and Staff College. He completed a Senior Executive Fellowship at Harvard University as well as the Program Management course at the Defense System Management College at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. 

Last updated: Tuesday, December 5, 2023