Continuing a tradition launched by a former colleague, Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) is devoting some of his Senate floor speeches to highlight the work of rank-and-file federal workers.

During his two-year stint in the Senate, former Sen. Ted Kaufman (D-Del.) made more than 100 floor speeches about different federal employees every week the Senate was in session. Kaufman, Vice President Biden’s former Senate chief of staff, left the Senate late last year and Warner vowed to continue the tradition.

Virginia’s junior senator spoke Thursday about Robert Benzon, a senior investigator with the National Transportation Safety Board who lives in Fredericksburg, Va. (Watch the video above or click here to see it.)

Benzon is a vet­eran investigator who’s helped develop safety recommendations for aircraft rudder systems and fuel tanks and the collection of information from “black box” flight recorders, according to Warner’s office.

“Each day we set foot on an airplane and arrive safely at our destination, we have Robert Benzon and his team to thank,” Warner said.

Thursday’s address was Warner’s fourth on the topic, according to his office. He’s also discussed the careers of NASA engineer Clint Cragg, part of a team that helped save 33 Chilean miners and Food and Drug Administration drug compliance office director Deborah Autor, who’s worked on minimizing exposure to ineffective drugs. An early January address on the issue was devoted to Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), her staffers and the service of thousands of current and former congressional staffers.

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