New Mexico spaceport authority director resigns

FILE - This Dec. 9, 2014, file photo shows Christine Anderson, executive director of the New Mexico Spaceport Authority, posing for a photo at the end of the taxiway at Spaceport America in Upham, N.M. Anderson testified before the Legislative Finance Committee in Alamogordo, N.M., on Wednesday, July 15, 2015, about Spaceport America's spending on security and firefighting services. (AP Photo/Susan Montoya Bryan,File)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) – The head of the New Mexico Spaceport Authority is resigning, saying she still believes in the commercial space industry and that Spaceport America has a role to play.

Christine Anderson announced her resignation in a memo Tuesday to the authority’s board and Gov. Susana Martinez. She said it was a difficult decision but she wants to pursue other adventures.

Anderson took over as executive director five years ago as the tax-payer financed spaceport was just getting off the ground.

She has lauded successes in building a multimillion-dollar launch site and bringing infrastructure to a remote stretch of desert, but delays by anchor tenant Virgin Galactic left the spaceport scrambling for revenue in recent years and some lawmakers have criticized the venture.

Anderson said in her letter that Spaceport America has signed new tenants and has momentum.

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