Acting FAA chief in advanced talks with Archer 

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The exiting acting FAA chief administrator Billy Nolen is in advanced talks to join Archer Aviation, according to sources close to the situation.

As reported the The Air Current, Nolen is in discussions with the California-based eVTOL OEM ahead of his departure from the FAA according to three people familiar with the discussions. 

Nolen announced he was leaving the FAA back in April but remains at the helm until his departure, which is planned for the summer. He has not publicly provided any information about what his next role could be. 

The current chief would not be the first senior FAA official to join the AAM sector. Michael Huerta, former FAA administrator, joined Joby Aviation. Former Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics, Will Roper joined BETA. Whilst Archer themselves also recruited Michael Romanowski, the former director of policy and innovation for the FAA’s certification department. 

In a recent LinkedIn post Nolen said: “Now, when I look to the next chapter of the story of my life, its all about how we see the future of aviation and aerospace unfolding. How do we leave the planet a better place for the next generation that follows.”

“What I can tell you is this, the future won’t be boring, it will be both evolutionary and revolutionary,” he added.

In a statement to CJI, the FAA said: “Billy Nolen is departing the FAA in the coming weeks and is continuing to ensure a smooth transition at the agency. Nolen will abide by the agency’s strict ethical requirements during the transition.”

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