14:23 GMT23 April 2021
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - US President Joe Biden has officially announced his intent to nominate former Senator Bill Nelson to serve as next head of NASA, the White House said on Friday.

    "Today, President Joe Biden announced his intent to nominate Bill Nelson to serve as National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Administrator," the White House said in a press release. "In the Senate he was known as the go-to senator for our nation’s space program. He now serves on the NASA Advisory Council."

    The White House noted that Nelson has served in public office for over four decades, including in the state legislature and in Congress, and as a State Treasurer.

    "He was elected three times to the United States Senate, representing the third-largest state for 18 years," the release said. "His committees included the breadth of government policy from defence, intelligence and foreign policy to finance, commerce and health care."

    Nelson was a chairman of the US House Space Subcommittee for six years, while in the Senate he served as the Chairman and Ranking Member of the Space and Science Subcommittee and Ranking Member of the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.

    The White House said almost every piece of space and science law has had Nelson's imprint, including passing the landmark NASA bill of 2010 along with Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson.

    "That law set NASA on its present dual course of both government and commercial missions. In 1986 he flew on the 24th flight of the Space Shuttle. The mission on Columbia, orbited the earth 98 times during six days," the release added.

    Bill Nelson, Joe Biden, White House, NASA
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