Caitlin Hayden is the Vice President of Communications for the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA), the leading advocacy organization for the aerospace and defense industry. In this role, she leads the organization’s outreach and communications functions and works closely with AIA member companies to tell the aerospace and defense industry’s story in the United States and around the world.
Caitlin joined AIA from Edelman, where she served as Executive Vice President and Director of the Media Group in the firm’s DC Office. At Edelman, Caitlin worked with a broad range of clients to develop comprehensive communications strategies to meet their business objectives, including protecting and promoting their brands and navigating regulatory, policy and crisis issues. She also served as one of Edelman’s senior media and speech trainers, working with CEOs and spokespeople globally to refine and strengthen their message.
Before joining Edelman, Caitlin served as a Special Assistant to President Obama, the National Security Council Senior Director for Strategic Communications and Press, and the National Security Council (NSC) Spokesperson. In this position, she led White House messaging around foreign policy, development and global health, defense, intelligence, cybersecurity and counterterrorism. She also served for two years as the Deputy NSC Spokesperson and several months as an Assistant White House Press Secretary for Foreign Affairs.
Prior to the White House, Caitlin was a career civil servant at the Department of State. She joined the State Department on September 10, 2001 and spent her career there focused on press, speechwriting and South and Central Asia policy. In addition to Washington assignments, Caitlin also served for varying lengths of time in Afghanistan, Iraq and the UK.
Caitlin studied communications at the University of Alabama as an undergraduate and received a master’s degree in communications from the University of Georgia. She is married to Erlingur Erlingsson, a Public Policy Manager at Facebook, and together they have one daughter, Sophie.