July 3, 2020 – ZRG has recruited Brett Feddersen as the president of AccelerātUM, a new entity founded by the former head of the FAA and industry colleagues to advance the unmanned air mobility industry. Managing directors Samantha Foster and Craig Sabina led the assignment.
“ZRG managing directors Craig Sabina and Samantha Foster were instrumental in Brett’s recruitment,” AccelerātUM said in a statement. “As new businesses and business models emerge within the drone sector, they anticipate a myriad of career opportunities for executives in this new market.”
“We are excited to take the drone industry to new heights, so to speak,” said Mr. Sabina. “Leveraging ZRG’s suite of comprehensive executive search tools, along with both mine and Samantha’s experience in aviation and aerospace, we look forward to delivering results as more companies begin to take flight.”
Mr. Stern and the board of directors has expressed its confidence in Brett to guide AccelerātUM in the unmanned mobility space. He most recently led the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) programs for national security, incident response and unmanned aircraft systems security. In this role as well as in previous senior executive appointments with the Department of Defense and the National Security Council, Mr. Stern developed and implemented guidelines to increase the competitiveness of the drone industry and counter threats and privacy concerns raised in response to their growing popularity.
Headquartered in Park City, UT, with additional offices in Washington, D.C., the new company was co-founded by Lessing Stern, its board chairman; Michael Huerta, former FAA Administrator; Jim Williams, former director of the FAA’s Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration; and Ben Rifkin, CEO of Ten Eighty Capital. AccelerātUM is an inclusive, non-partisan, privately funded collaborative developing consensus-based solutions for the unmanned mobility industry by bringing together commercial end-users, municipalities, emergency service providers, manufacturers, technology providers, researchers and regulators.
“Unmanned aircraft systems are growing at a fast rate, and the standard regulatory processes are slower and more deliberative by design,” said Mr. Huerta. “This poses a risk to the safety and security of our critical infrastructure and the National Airspace System. AccelerātUM was created to accelerate the development and implementation of policies, standards and best practices necessary to address that risk.”
Veteran Search Consultants
ZRG, founded in 1999, is a progressive mid-sized global executive search firm that uses a proven, data-driven approach. Today, ZRG is one of the fastest-growing global firms in the search industry and provides a full suite of retained executive, middle-management, and customized search solutions globally through its offices in North America, Europe, South America and Asia. The firm finds leaders across a broad spectrum of business markets, including aerospace, consumer, education, healthcare services and solutions, industrial, life sciences, non-profit, private equity and venture capital, and technology.
Ms. Foster is located in ZRG’s Connecticut office where she leads the U.S. aerospace and defense practice. With over 20 years in aerospace and defense, she undertakes senior assignments covering a wide variety of functional roles, including C-suite, legal, operations, engineering, sales and marketing, finance, general management, supply chain and human resources. Ms. Foster specializes in military and commercial aerospace including avionics design and manufacturing, composites manufacturing, landing gear systems, castings and forgings, and maintenance, repair and overhaul. Her experience also includes assignments in general manufacturing and engineering in several other industrial sectors.
Mr. Sabina specializes in the aviation and aerospace industry with a particular focus on the UAV, UAM and traditional general aviation sectors. He has led a number of searches for Boeing’s Insitu division and placed three executives and a board member at New York State’s NUAIR Alliance. Through his work with Nike, Xerox, Columbia Sportswear, Swiss Army Brands, AOL/Times Mirror, Norwegian Cruise Lines, Oregon Health Sciences University, Bandon Dunes, Honeywell, Bendix King and dozens more, Mr. Sabina brings deep experience helping major companies achieve complex objectives in rapidly-evolving business environments.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media