Dassault Falcon Jet honored John Rosanvallon with a tribute video at its annual Falcon Family Breakfast Wednesday morning. Having spent his entire career with Dassault, Rosanvallon is stepping down as CEO of the Falcon Jet business unit, though he will remain with Dassault Group as a special business aviation advisor to chairman and CEO Eric Trappier. Thierry Betbeze will head Dassault Falcon.
The video included early childhood pictures and an interview with Rosanvallon, in which he shared that one of his early ambitions was to be a Catholic missionary, “but then with teenage coming, I thought, well, maybe it’s not for me." He married his wife Genevieve in 1973 and joined Dassault Aviation two years later.
At the time, Dassault was partnered with Pan Am to build a presence in North America for its Mystere 20 business jet, later renamed the Falcon 20. The link-up ultimately morphed into what is now Dassault Falcon Jet, a wholly-owned Dassault Aviation business unit based at Teterboro Airport in New Jersey.
“I first came to the U.S. in 1976 and I really enjoyed it,” he said. “It’s been a big part of my life to have this French/American experience. I’ve tried over the last 30 years to be a good link between the two.”
Bridging that cultural divide hasn’t always been an easy assignment, but judging by the prolonged standing ovation he received from colleagues, Falcon customers, and industry partners, Rosanvallon has served his mission with a combination of competency, integrity, energy, and good humor that will not soon be forgotten.