HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Helena native Dava Newman will become the deputy administrator of NASA.

The Independent Record newspaper of Helena reports (http://bit.ly/1GsnKin ) that President Barack Obama nominated Newman to fill the position last October. She was approved by the Senate Monday.

Newman will be second in command at NASA and provide leadership, planning and policy direction. She will also work with the administrator to represent NASA to government officials and other groups.

She graduated from Capital High School and went on to teach aeronautics and astronautics at MIT and invent a new spacesuit.

U.S. Sen. Steve Daines called Newman a testament to the quality of Montana's public education.

Newman will continue her work at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology while waiting to be officially installed by the president.