NTSB Press Release

National Transportation Safety Board
Office of Public Affairs


December 4, 1997

Washington, DC - National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) Chairman Jim Hall today announced the appointments of two NTSB managers to top agency posts.

Peter Goelz has been named NTSB Managing Director, the agency's top administrative post. He will be responsible for the day-to-day operation of the agency's administrative functions and act as the Chairman's chief policy advisor. Goelz replaces Ken Jordan, who had been Managing Director since 1995 and recently moved to the Department of Defense as Executive Director of the National Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve.

Jamie Finch will head the NTSB's Office of Government, Public and Family Affairs, the post held by Goelz. Finch will be responsible for an office that provides information about the Board's activities to the public, news media, the White House, Congress and state and local governments. Its newly-staffed family affairs section is the NTSB's outreach to the families of transportation accident victims.

Goelz and Finch begin their new duties Dec. 15 at the independent federal agency.

In 1994 Finch joined NTSB and served for three years as special assistant to the Chairman. Earlier this year, Finch was named deputy director of the Office of Government, Public and Family Affairs.

Since joining the NTSB in 1995, Goelz has managed the office responsible for government affairs which was later combined with public affairs. In 1996, the office added a third function: family affairs.

Goelz was instrumental in organizing and carrying out the agency's new duties to families of victims killed in major transportation accidents, a role Congress officially gave the NTSB in 1996 following the TWA Flight 800 explosion.

Goelz credits Hall with helping to bring the concerns of victims' families to the attention of the public and Congress. "Shortly after Jim Hall arrived at the NTSB, he saw a disturbing void in government and industry responsiveness to families," Goelz said. "Keeping families informed and making sure the transportation industry, state and local and other federal agencies fulfill their obligations during the tragic times of accidents is the right thing to do. I'm proud that I was part of Jim Hall's team that made it happen."

Goelz was responsible for coordinating information to the press, public and families at several high-profile accidents in the past three years including the ValuJet accident in Miami, the Comair commuter accident near Monroe, Michigan, and the TWA 800 explosion off Long Island.

He was on site at an Atlantic Southeast Airlines commuter accident in Carrollton, Georgia; an Amtrak and MARC train collision in Silver Spring, Maryland; an Amtrak derailment near Secaucus, N.J; a grade crossing accident in Sycamore, S.C.; and the Metra train-school bus collision near Fox River Grove, Illinois.

Goelz, 50, received a bachelor's degree from Boston University and a master's from Antioch College. He is married to Kate Kelley. They have two children and live in Northern Virginia.

While at the NTSB, Finch has been on site at several accident investigations including a circus train derailment in Lakeland, Florida; the Action Air Charters accident in Stratford, Connecticut; the American Eagle accident in Roselawn, Indiana; the Amtrak derailment near Secaucus, NJ; the Air Transport International cargo plane accident in Kansas City and a grade crossing accident in Sycamore, S.C.

In addition, Finch was a consultant to the White House Commission on Aviation Safety and Security and the joint DOT-NTSB Task Force on Assistance to Families of Aviation Disasters. He also spent several months at the White House to assist in the selection of personnel for the Departments of Transportation and Energy.

Finch, 33, received a bachelor's degree from the University of Tennessee and a master's from Johns Hopkins University. He is currently working on his doctorate. He lives in Northern Virginia.

Media contact: Pat Cariseo (202) 314-6100



The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is an independent federal agency charged with determining the probable cause
of transportation accidents, promoting transportation safety, and assisting victims of transportation accidents and their families.