PASS Mourns Loss of a Founder and Former President

WASHINGTON, DC - The Professional Airways Systems Specialists (PASS) lost a great leader this week with the passing of Mike Fanfalone, a man who dedicated his life’s work to improving the working conditions of FAA employees throughout the country, including systems specialists, flight inspection pilots and aviation safety inspectors. He was one of the union’s founders and served as national president of the organization for two three-year terms starting in 1997.

“His leadership and guidance have helped many of us over the years, and I can say with certainty that I am a better person and better union official for having known and worked with Mike,” said Tom Brantley,current national president of PASS.

Fanfalone began his career with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in 1975 as a radar specialist in Saginaw, Michigan. From 1977 to 1979, Fanfalone served as a radar display technician at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York. He moved to Maryland in 1979 to become a radar specialist at the Baltimore/Washington International Airport’s control tower. Before becoming PASS president, Fanfalone was the PASS national Employee Involvement Program coordinator for eight years.

During the past 30 years, Fanfalone either volunteered for or was elected to serve in just about every union representative position from the local to the national level. He was a member of every bargaining team for Airway Facilities, and served as the chief negotiator for the union’s current collective bargaining agreement. Under Fanfalone’s leadership, PASS successfully negotiated a new approach for training the FAA technical workforce designed to significantly improve productivity, propel modernization of the National Airspace System (NAS), and provide meaningful job security for PASS members.

“Mike was a leader and a great inspiration for the working men and women represented by PASS. He will be missed but never forgotten,” said Brantley.

Services for Mike Fanfalone will be held on Monday, July 3, 10:00 a.m. at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Parish, 1800 Seton Drive, Crofton, Maryland 21114. Interment will follow immediately after Monday's funeral mass at Crownsville Veterans Cemetery, 1122 Sunrise Beach Road, Crownsville, Maryland 21032.


PASS represents more than 11,000 employees of the Federal Aviation Administration and the Department of Defense who install, maintain, support and certify air traffic control and national defense equipment, inspect and oversee the commercial and general aviation industries, develop flight procedures and perform quality analyses of the aviation systems. For more information, visit the PASS website at

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