Patrick Ky, who has led the Single European Sky ATM Research (Sesar) program through its development phase, has been named executive director of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), effective September 1. Ky will succeed Patrick Goudou, who has headed the European safety authority based in Cologne, Germany, since it was created in September 2003.
The EASA management board announced the appointment on Wednesday. “Patrick is a leading figure in European aviation and his experience and skills will be a tremendous asset to the agency,” Goudou stated. “I look forward to working closely with him over the coming months as we prepare the transition.”
Ky has served since October 2007 as executive director of the Sesar Joint Undertaking (SJU), the Brussels-based organization that was formed under European Union law that year to lead the Sesar effort from its definition phase through development. An engineer, he previously headed the European Commission’s Sesar program and worked for the French civil aviation authority and Eurocontrol. Ky is also a member of the RTCA NextGen Advisory Committee in the U.S., serving as the Sesar program liaison.
Nathalie Oghlian, Sesar JU spokeswoman, said the process of replacing Ky as executive director “will be a normal procedure. There will be an official call [for the] job opening.” She said the SJU plans to issue a formal statement on Thursday.
(On March 14, the Sesar JU issued a statement by Matthias Ruete, European Commission director general for mobility and transport and chairman of the Sesar administrative board. “Patrick has been invaluable to the successful accomplishment of every step of this Joint Undertaking and we are sad to lose him, however, we can at least revel in the fact that he will not be too far away,” Ruete said. Ky said he is “extraordinarily proud of what we have accomplished together and I am confident that my departure will not jeopardize the future of Sesar. … I look forward to continuing to collaborate with Sesar in my new position, which, after all, shares a common objective.”
Ruete said an official announcement on the recruitment process for Ky’s successor will be made in the coming weeks. —BC)