People in Aviation: April 2010

 - March 31, 2010, 8:00 AM

Former NetJets executive v-p and Executive Jet Management president and CEO Benjamin Murray has joined private aviation provider XOJet as its new president.

Brad Hatt, formerly v-p of sales at Hawker Beechcraft, has been named president of Consolidated Holdings Group. He will oversee several of the group’s businesses, including Wichita Air Services.

John Bingham, formerly executive v-p and chief marketing officer at Piaggio America, has been named president and CEO. He succeeds Tom Appleton, who has retired but will remain with the company as a consultant. Bingham will retain the role of chief marketing officer.

Helicopter services provider CHC has named Tilmann Gabriel president of the organization’s European operations. He was previously president and CEO of Safi Airways, the international airline of Afghanistan.

Tempe, Ariz.-based StandardAero has appointed Melissa Maddox to v-p of operations for its business aviation sector, in addition to her current role as the MRO specialist’s v-p of global security and risk assurance.

Alex Badran has been appointed Banc of America Leasing’s managing director and head of sales for international corporate aircraft finance. Most recently he was senior v-p of global aviation finance for Europe, the Middle East and Africa and Asia Pacific at Cessna Finance.

Gulfstream has made several changes to its executive sales staff. Scott Neal and Brian Miller, formerly sales directors, have been promoted to vice presidents in the company’s North American sales group, responsible for the central division and western divisions, respectively. The Savannah airframer also announced that Jim Dobbins, formerly v-p of western division sales, has been moved to v-p of eastern division sales. The company also tapped Jeff Miller, formerly CEO of Blake-Miller Communications, for the newly created position of v-p of communications.

Oxford, Conn.-based aviation services provider Key Air announced that president and CEO Brad Kost has left the company and is succeeded by former senior v-p Bob Marinace.

David Vaughan has joined Jet Aviation as v-p of key client relationships for FBO, aircraft management, charter and staffing services. Previously, he was v-p of business development with XJet World in Denver.

Honeywell has announced some executive changes, moving Timothy Beatty, previously v-p of customer support solutions, to v-p of customer and product support for its business and general aviation division. Carl Esposito, most recently v-p of avionics marketing and product management for avionics and flight control systems, was named v-p of marketing and product management for the company’s aerospace division.

Luis Planas has been named v-p of quality at Dassault Falcon’s Little Rock facility. Previously he was responsible for all quality operations at Honda Aircraft. The French airframer promoted Jim Marks from deputy general counsel to the position of v-p and general counsel, succeeding Matt Boyle, who remains with the company as senior v-p for special projects. The company also appointed Renaud Cloatre as the new sales director for the Middle East region, while Woody Saland, previously manager of technical programs, was chosen for the newly created position of manager of technical programs, pilot operations and training. Mike Marcum was named field technical representative and Falcon 900 series specialist.

Rockwell Collins has announced several changes in its executive staff. Greg Churchill, previously executive v-p and COO of government systems, has been named executive v-p of international and service solutions. He was replaced by Kelly Ortberg, formerly executive v-p and COO of commercial systems. Kent Statler, previously executive v-p of Rockwell Collins Services, was tapped to succeed Ortberg.

Thomas McQuade, previously executive v-p of Sikorsky Aircraft subsidiary Associated Aircraft Group (AAG), has been selected as president, succeeding AAG founder John Agor, who retired.

Safran subsidiary Sagem Avionics has appointed Larry Alexandre, previously COO for sister company Turbomeca, as CEO. He succeeds Jean Baudin, who moved to a corporate position within the parent company.  

Kansas City, Mo.-based fractional provider Executive AirShare has promoted Adam Letts from director of operations to v-p of operations.

Nancy Lematta, wife of late Columbia Helicopters founder Wes Lematta, will succeed him as chairman of the company’s board of directors.

Canadian completions specialist Flying Colours has promoted Tony Barrett from v-p of maintenance to v-p of completions and modifications. The Ontario-based company also named Glenn Williams, previously director of maintenance for 2023225 Ontario’s flight department, as director of maintenance, and Alan Keeling, Montreal Jet Center’s former director of maintenance and production, as its new director of quality assurance.

The National Air Transportation Association named Robert Stallings III, president of Eastern Aviation Fuels, to its board of directors.

Peter Bellini, former director of global aviation for BD and president of the Teterboro Users Group, has been named program manager for airport delay reduction for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Final Flight
John Baker, 81, the president of AOPA from 1977 to 1990, died at his home in Angier, N.C., on March 11. An Air Force pilot during the Korean War, he went on to earn a law degree and served as a congressional staffer before being named assistant administrator in the FAA’s office of general aviation affairs.
Upon assuming leadership of AOPA, he was involved in the equitable distribution of the more than $4 billion surplus in the Aviation Trust Fund, which paid for improvements at more than 3,000 GA airports. Among his other achievements were establishing AOPA’s political action committee, successfully fighting a proposed annual tax on GA aircraft, and convincing members of Congress to change product liability laws that negatively affected GA airframers.

Awards & Honors
Cessna chairman, president and CEO Jack Pelton has been selected to receive the 2010 Lindbergh Award, presented annually to individuals whose work over many years has made significant contributions toward the balance of nature and scientific innovation.

The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) has announced this year’s recipients of its highest honors. Gary Driggers, long-time executive at Midcoast Aviation, has been selected for the William A. “Bill” Ong Memorial Award. Driggers, a former NATA chairman and member of the board of directors, recently retired from Midcoast Aviation after 22 years of service. The NATA Award for Distinguished Service will be presented to Jerry Costello (D-Ill.), chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives subcommittee on aviation, and a long-time supporter of the general aviation community. “Chairman Costello’s drive to advance aviation safety and implement NextGen, in addition to his steadfast leadership in shepherding an FAA reauthorization bill void of user fees, makes him the perfect choice as this year’s recipient of NATA’s Distinguished Service Award,” said NATA president James Coyne.