Director, FAA William J. Hughes Technical Center
Shelley J. Yak is the Director of the FAA William J. Hughes Technical Center, within the NextGen Organization. Ms. Yak serves as principal advisor and is responsible for managing, operating, and maintaining world class aviation laboratories; planning and coordinating FAA’s research and development program; conducting applied research and development; testing, evaluating, verifying, and validating current national airspace system and future next generation air transportation systems; providing facility maintenance, engineering support, support services for all properties located at the William J. Hughes Technical Center.
Ms. Yak has extensive operational experience in leading organizations through change, building cross-organizational teams, leveraging strong project management and leadership capabilities to build effective business processes and deliver technology solutions. Her prior positions within the FAA included Deputy Director of the Technical Center, supporting the previous director in making the Technical Center the nation’s premier aviation and air traffic management federal laboratory. Ms. Yak was also the Division Manager of the Center Operations team where she was responsible for the operation, maintenance, and sustainment of the Technical Center facilities, which provide support and technical services. During her tenure in this position, she also acted in the position of Director of NextGen Performance and Reporting and was responsible for defining and establishing this newly formed organization and Director of Operational Evolution Partnership Planning. Previously, Ms. Yak held the position of Division Manager of Information Technology (IT) responsible for the management and security of the Technical Center IT network and telecommunications infrastructure, help desk and desktop support services, and software application development and support.
Prior to joining the FAA in 1997, Ms. Yak was the Superintendent of Power Delivery Dispatch and Support for Atlantic City Electric where she oversaw the dispatch of personnel responsible for the investigation and restoration of power during normal and emergency conditions and the technical staff responsible for maintaining, operating and supporting the Energy Management and Power Distribution Management computer systems.
Ms. Yak holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Information and System Science from Stockton University and a Masters in Engineering Management from Rowan University. She has received numerous internal and industry leadership and excellence awards throughout her career.