The Federal Aviation Administration announced Wednesday that it has selected two aviation professionals to lead its integration of unmanned aerial vehicles into U.S. airspace.
Marke "Hoot" Gibson and Earl Lawrence were selected for the two executive-level positions.
Hoot Gibson will become the Senior Advisor on UAV Integration. The position was established to focus on external outreach and education, inter-agency initiatives and an enterprise-level approach to FAA management of UAV integration efforts.
Gibson previously served as Executive Director of the NextGen Institute, which provides professional services to the Unmanned Aircraft Systems Joint Program Development Office. He has also owned his own aviation consulting firm, and held numerous senior command and staff positions during a 33-year U.S. Air Force career.
Earl Lawrence will become the Director of the UAS Integration Office within the FAA's Aviation Safety organization. He will lead the FAA's efforts to safely and effectively integrate UAS into the nation's airspace.
During almost five years as Director of the FAA Small Airplane Directorate, Lawrence was responsible for 17 aircraft certification and manufacturing district offices in 21 states.
Before coming to the agency in 2010, he had been Vice President for Industry & Regulatory Affairs at the Experimental Aircraft Association since 1994.
Both executives will assume their positions later this month.