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Jenn Lemmon
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Ask the GM - There’s no crying in baseball

In the ATO, to ultimately enhance our operational services, we must also have leaders who focus primarily on strategy and implementing changes that will impact our future. So this week we have appointed a team of general managers (GMs) who will implement our Air Traffic Services Realignment, allowing other managers in the field to focus on the daily operation.

Several moves have led up to our phased realignment already. Full implementation of the plan will be official Oct. 1, as we continue to align en route and terminal procedures, automation, management and administrative services to ensure seamless service and increase efficiency. 

With the placement of our GMs, we will improve oversight of field leadership for both terminal and en route facilities in a defined geographic area. We’re moving from 44 en route center managers and terminal district managers to 18 GMs, whose role is to be the strategic leader and provide a single voice for the district. The role of our Air Traffic Managers will remain focused on the operation. The GM and the entire District Management Team will share responsibility and accountability for the integrated delivery of air traffic services and combined support/administrative services.

As part of these changes, support functions will be aligned across en route and terminal to ensure an equitable delivery of services. Support managers will no longer serve only one particular facility, and their duties will be driven by the needs of the whole district. Managerial functions to be combined will include traffic management, quality control, training, airspace and procedures, plans and requirements, and administrative services. This will ensure that all facilities, regardless of their size and location, will receive the same quality training and support services.

The Air Traffic Services Field Realignment is another step in moving the ATO forward to become more fluid in adapting to industry change while  still operating within government appropriations and fiscal responsibility.  Our GMs will help ensure this transition goes smoothly.

We’ve selected 16 of our 18 general managers from a very competitive field of 80 applicants, while continued evaluations take place in Chicago and New York. Please join me in welcoming our new GMs and working with them to ensure success:

ZAB: Michael Valencia, Albuquerque, NM. (Previously Terminal District Manager (TDM) at Southern California District)

ZAS: Peter Abbey, Auburn, WA (Deputy Director Operations, Western Service Area, North)

ZBW: Robert Jones, Nashua, NH (Acting General Manager, New England District)

ZDC: Theresa Mount, Washington, DC (TDM, Capital District)

ZDL: Todd Jacobson, Salt Lake City, UT (Air Traffic Manager (ATM), Salt Lake City Center)

ZFW: Frank McIntosh, Fort Worth, TX (ATM, Albuquerque Center)

ZHO: Tony DiBernardo, Fremont, CA (TDM, Sierra Pacific District)

ZHU: Greg Motl, Houston, TX (TDM, Texana District)

ZIM: Dale McNeal, Indianapolis, IN (Acting District Manager for Support, Lake Effect District)

ZJX: Shaun Sanders, Hilliard, FL (ATM, Atlanta Center)

ZKC: Lowell Hought, Olathe, KS (ATM, Kansas City Center)

ZLA: Dave Foyle, Lawndale, CA (Director, Air Traffic Control System Command Center)

ZMA: Juan Fuentes, Miami, FL (TDM, Paradise District)

ZMP: Ron Sekenski, Minneapolis, MN (Acting TDM, Northern Planes District)

ZOB: Joe Figliuolo, Detroit, MI (TDM, Great Lakes District)

ZTL: Michael Schmidt, Atlanta, GA (Deputy Director Operations, Eastern Service Area, North)

Thanks everyone!


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