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Black History Month Spotlight: Marc Nichols

As of last month, Nichols added one more prestigious title to his resume: chief counsel of the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Drawing upon the people skills he learned with Lambda Chi, Nichols’ new job requires him to lead a critical government department and 300 employees.

Nichols joined Lambda Chi at Wabash College, a private men’s liberal arts college in Indiana. At his chapter, Nichols served as High Alpha for a year. More recently, Nichols served on Lambda Chi’s Diversity, Equity & Inclusion committee, working to ensure all Brothers are accepted into the bonds of Brotherhood. Nichols has also served on the Successful Brother Committee and continues to give back to his Lambda Chi community by mentoring young Lambda Chi Brothers.

“High Alpha was a great experience,” Nichols said. “I met people of various backgrounds, levels of sophistication and interests. 

“Lambda Chi has helped me hone my ability to meet people where they are, get to know them and accept them for themselves ‘in the bonds of Christian brotherhood’ as one of our tenets says. I also learned how to live a life as a servant leader in the grandest and truest tradition of that phrase.” 

Throughout his career Nichols maintains respect, care and concern for community, customers, and clients. Nichols worked in the climate change, sustainability, supply chain and finance industries before transitioning to aerospace, where his main concern has always been the safety of passengers. 

As a result of his hard work, President Biden appointed him to the prestigious position of chief counsel of the FAA. Nichols leads the department charged with providing legal counseling to the agency, which ensures the safety of the flying public in the United States and for U.S. carriers in other parts of the world. With about 45,000 employees, the FAA is the largest transportation agency in the U.S. government and regulates aircraft safety operations, airport safety, the design of new airports, commercial space travel and chemical hazards at airports. The agency also works with international agencies to share best practices related to flying around the globe and more. 

In his impressive new appointment, Nichols manages to stay grounded and lead his department using the skills he learned from Lambda Chi. The Fraternity taught him the importance of leadership and connecting with people across different backgrounds. 

“In many ways, Lambda Chi Alpha shaped who I am today,” said Nichols. 

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