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Trump Nominates Ex-Pilot Bridenstine to Head NASA – White House

© AP Photo / Paul KizzleA NASA security helicopter flies by the NASA logo on the Vehicle Assembly Building
A NASA security helicopter flies by the NASA logo on the Vehicle Assembly Building - Sputnik International
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US President Donald Trump on Friday named Oklahoma Congressman James Bridenstine as his pick for the 13th head of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the White House said.

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WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — The 42-year-old serves on the House Armed Services Committee and the Science, Space and Technology Committee.

Reacting to the announcement, acting NASA administrator Robert Lightfoot said he was pleased to have Bridenstine nominated to lead their team and looked forward to working with him.

"Of course, the nomination must go through the Senate confirmation process, but I look forward to ensuring a smooth transition and sharing the great work the NASA team is doing," he said in a statement.

Bridenstine has made a career in naval aviation, flying combat missions in Iraq and Afghanistan off the USS Abraham Lincoln aircraft carrier.

After leaving active duty, he became executive director at the Air and Space Museum and Planetarium in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and flew counter-drug missions as part of the Navy reserve in Latin America.

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