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Senate Confirms Former Florida Sen. Bill Nelson To Lead NASA

Former Sen. Bill Nelson, nominee to be administrator of NASA, speaks during a Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation confirmation hearing, Wednesday, April 21, 2021 on Capitol Hill in Washington. (Saul Loeb/Pool via AP)
Former Sen. Bill Nelson, nominee to be administrator of NASA, speaks during a Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation confirmation hearing, Wednesday, April 21, 2021 on Capitol Hill in Washington. (Saul Loeb/Pool via AP)

The Senate has confirmed Bill Nelson, a former Florida senator who once flew on the space shuttle, to be the next NASA administrator.

Lawmakers agreed to President Joe Biden’s choice to lead the space agency by consensus late Thursday, without a roll call vote.

Nelson says he is “honored,” adding, "Onward and upward!”

He will become NASA’s 14th administrator, succeeding another former member of Congress, Jim Bridenstine, a Republican from Oklahoma.

Nelson currently serves on the NASA Advisory Council.

He promised, when nominated, to “help lead NASA into an exciting future of possibilities.”

The space agency is working to send astronauts back to the moon this decade.

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