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Our Business

Organized collection of passenger airplanes at dusk preparing for gate arrivals and departures

The Business of Better Aviation

As a division of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), FAA is tasked with regulating and overseeing all aspects of our nation's civil aviation. FAA employees work from staff and regional offices, centers and airports across the nation in a variety of occupations to provide the safest, most efficient aviation technology and airspace in the world.

From regulating flight inspection standards and advancing new technology to developing and maintaining air traffic control systems, the FAA serves as the guiding force behind the safe and efficient air transport systems on which people and commerce worldwide rely.

The FAA is where technology, business and safety come together to make an impact that reaches around the globe and affects the lives of many.


Strong Leaders. Clear Vision. What It Takes to Move the World.

The mission of the FAA is to provide our nation with the safest, most efficient aerospace systems in the world. We are dedicated to reaching not only the next level of safety and efficiency, but also extending our environmental responsibility and global leadership on behalf of the American public and our stakeholders. This is a complex task, one that relies on the work of an entire organization led by a group of dedicated senior officials.

Our leadership represents the agency's passion, integrity and innovation. These individuals are committed to advancing these values and ensuring that they spread throughout all levels of the organization.

Steve Dickson, Administrator

Steve Dickson was sworn in as the FAA administrator by U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao on August 12, after being confirmed for a five-year term by the U.S. Senate on July 24, 2019. Dickson recently retired from service as the senior vice president of Flight Operations for Delta Air Lines.

Brad Mims, Deputy Administrator

FAA Organizational Chart

See how high your career can fly at the FAA. Below is a high-level breakdown of the agency committed to upholding the safety and certification for aircraft and pilots and the regulation of U.S. commercial space transportation.

Business Areas

Ensuring Safe Flight — From the Ground Up

The FAA is organized into five business areas (Lines of Business) that work together to contribute to the agency's goal of safe and efficient air travel for all. While the focus and scope of these mission areas may vary, each plays a unique and critical role in keeping travelers and cargo moving through our nation's skies. Discover the mission area that is right for you and put your skills to use at the FAA.

Airports (ARP)
Optimizes the safety, capacity and condition of the nation's airport system, including all programs related to regulations and inspections as well as standards for design, construction and operation. ARP requires one of the more diverse workforces within FAA, with occupations including:
  • Planners
  • Engineers
  • Environmental Specialists
  • Environmental Attorneys
  • Program Analysts
  • Certification and Safety Inspectors
  • Compliance Specialists
  • Wildlife Biologists
  • Fire Safety Experts
  • IT Specialists
Air Traffic Organization (ATO)
Responsible for keeping air traffic moving safely throughout the skies. ATO's workforce includes more than 35,000 air traffic controllers, technicians, engineers and support personnel directing more than 50,000 commercial, private and military flights through our national airspace each day. ATO employs individuals in numerous fields such as:
  • Air Traffic Controllers
  • Program Analysts
  • Program Managers
  • Computer Scientists
  • Electronics Technicians
  • Safety Specialists
  • And more
Aviation Safety (AVS)
Ensures the certification, approval and airworthiness of aircraft along with the certification of all pilots, mechanics and other air safety-related professionals. AVS also works to develop the regulations by which these aircraft and individuals are governed. We look for dedicated, motivated candidates for the following positions:
  • Safety Inspectors & Analysts
  • Engineers
  • Technical Writers
  • Scientists
  • Environmental Protection Specialists
  • And more
Office of Commercial Space Transportation (AST)
Protects the public, property and interests of the nation during the launch or reentry of commercial spacecraft. As the FAA's only space-related business area, AST is responsible for all activities related to the U.S. commercial space transportation industry. The individuals that help space travel and air travel coexist are:
  • Safety Specialists
  • Engineers
  • Technical Writers
  • And more
Security & Hazardous Materials Safety (ASH)
Increases safety in air transportation by preventing hazardous materials accidents and incidents aboard aircraft. Over 100 special agents dedicated to enforcement and educational outreach, ensure compliance with U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) regulations.

FAA is Part of DOT

A Lasting Partnership for a Critical Mission

Since 1967, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been a division of the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT). Formerly known as the Federal Aviation Agency, it became the largest of several agencies within DOT. This change put in place the current structure at FAA, with the Administrator reporting to the Secretary of Transportation rather than the President. All new programs and budget requests must be approved by DOT, which then includes these requests in the overall budget submitted to the President.

Staff Offices

Chief Counsel (AGC)
Supports the agency's mission by furnishing timely and responsive legal services to the FAA Administrator and all agency organizations at the headquarters, regional and center levels. Components of the office also serve as the FAA Administrator's adjudicative forums for civil penalty and acquisition disputes. Attorneys represent the agency before a variety of forums. The counsel's office also works closely with the Office of the General Counsel of the Department of Transportation on issues that are common to modal administrations or that are of national significance to the aviation industry.
Civil Rights (ACR)
Advises, represents and assists the FAA Administrator on civil rights and equal opportunity matters that ensure:
  • The elimination of unlawful discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, genetic information, age, religion, creed, sexual orientation and individuals with disabilities in federally operated and federally assisted transportation programs
  • That all beneficiaries and potential beneficiaries of these programs, including employees and potential employees, are offered equal opportunities to participate in them
  • A positive working environment in the Federal Aviation Administration by valuing, using and managing the differences that individuals bring to the workplace
Communications (AOC)
Responsible for the policy, direction and management of the agency's communications programs for the news media and FAA's employees nationwide. AOC works closely with FAA's lines of business and staff offices to provide media outlets with timely, accurate information on FAA programs and activities under FAA's four main strategic goals: safety, capacity, international leadership and organizational excellence. The office also coordinates the activities of the regional and center public affairs officers. They coordinate with the agency's lines of business and staff offices to provide FAA employees pertinent, accurate and timely information on agency programs and activities. In addition, through the employee website, we provide information and resources employees need to do their jobs. AOC also supports the agency's communications programs — management, graphics and media services, including webcasting, and policy and oversight of FAA's branding identity program nationwide.
Finance and Management (AFN)
Helps streamline processes to achieve greater efficiency while ensuring the integrity, transparency, efficiency and consistency of business, financial, IT, acquisition, region and center operations, and to position the FAA to effectively implement the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen). The Assistant Administrator for Finance and Management advises and assists the Administrator in directing, coordinating, controlling and ensuring the adequacy of FAA plans and programs for administrative and information resource management, budget and financial management, appraisal and evaluation of programs and activities, acquisition, and region and center operations (real property, personal property, government furnished property and transportation services).
Government and Industry Affairs
Acts as the Administrator's principal advisor and representative on matters concerning Congress, aviation industry groups and other governmental organizations. We promote aviation by working with other FAA offices to develop and review plans and strategies involving these groups. We coordinate with the Department of Transportation's Assistant Secretary for Governmental Affairs to ensure our work is consistent with the Department's policy.
Human Resource Management (AHR)
Advises and assists the Administrator in directing, coordinating, communicating and ensuring the adequacy of FAA employee-related plans, programs and initiatives. We strive to provide our employees with a quality of work/life that is second to none. And our employees strive to provide the world's safest and most efficient aerospace system.
NextGen (ANG)
Provides leadership in planning and developing the Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen). NextGen is a transformative change in the management and operation of how we fly, which will reduce delays, save fuel and lower carbon emissions. This comprehensive initiative integrates new and existing technologies, including satellite navigation and advanced digital communications. Airports and aircraft in the U.S. National Airspace System (NAS) will be connected to NextGen's advanced infrastructure and will continually share information in real time to improve air transportation's safety, speed, efficiency and environmental impact. The combined initiatives of NextGen will provide a better travel experience. Our office coordinates NextGen initiatives, programs and policy development across the FAA lines of business and staff offices. The office also works with other U.S. Federal and state government agencies, our international counterparts and members of the aviation community to ensure harmonization of NextGen policies and procedures.
Policy, International Affairs & Environment (APL)
Leads the agency's efforts to increase the safety and capacity of the global aerospace system in an environmentally sound manner. The office leads FAA's strategic policy and planning efforts, coordinates the agency's reauthorization before Congress and is responsible for national aviation policies and strategies in the environment and energy arenas, including aviation activity forecasts, economic analyses, aircraft noise and emissions research and policy, environmental policy, aviation insurance and employee safety and health.

Working Here

Working at FAA offers a unique opportunity to experience a career where your impact not only reaches throughout the aviation industry, but around the world.

More about working here

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