Deborah Hersman announced that she would be vacating her role as chairwoman of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB). Hersman has commanded the board since 2009 and has been a board member since 2004. Hersman was also considered as a replacement for secretary of transportation Ray LaHood when her retired.
The NTSB was created as an independent federal agency in 1967; it has investigated more than 132,000 accidents and made more than 13,500 safety recommendations. The NTSB is recognized internationally as a preeminent accident investigation organization. Hersman serves as the chief executive of the agency, which has 400+ employees and an annual budget of more than $100 million.
She was the board member behind the two-day motorcycle safety symposium conducted in October 2007, which led to the issuing of calls for mandatory helmet laws. She did, however, make good on a promise to the Motorcycle Riders Foundation to personally take the Basic Rider Course. She passed the class, but never got her license.
Hersman was first appointed as a Board Member by President Bush in 2004 and was reappointed to two additional five-year terms by President Obama in 2009 and 2013. President Obama appointed her Chairman in 2009, 2011 and 2013 with unanimous Senate confirmation votes.
Hersman is not going far though. In her new role, the 43-year-old will be heading the National Safety Council. The safety council, a non-profit organization headquartered in suburban Chicago, describes its mission as "to save lives by preventing injuries and deaths at work, in homes and communities, and on the roads."
There is no word on the replacement chairperson of the NTSB.
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