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ERA announces board election results, ERA Awards winners revealed

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ATHENS, GREECE – The European Regions Airline Association (ERA) announced Andrew Kelly, ASL Airlines Ireland, as its new President.

Carlos Bertomeu, Air Nostrum, and Jan Palmer, Nordica, were re-elected as Vice Presidents. Jorg Troester, Hahn Air Lines, was re-elected as a regular airline board member and Niki Karagoule Karageorgou, Sky Express, was elected as a new regular airline board member.

Marco Balbo-Mossetto, SuperJet International, was re-elected as an associate board member. Andy Green, Jota Aviation, was announced as new affiliate board member, with Mikael Wangdahl, SAS External Production re-elected as board member in the same category.

Andrew Kelly, ASL Airlines Ireland has been elected as the new President of ERA, further strengthening the association’s industry knowledge and expertise. The board election results were announced today, 19 October 2017, at the association’s Annual General Meeting during the ERA General Assembly in Athens.

Andrew Kelly commented: “I am delighted to have been appointed as ERA’s new President. I’m very much looking forward to working with the ERA leadership team and board members as we implement ERA’s future strategy and drive positive change in the European aviation industry”.

Lorna Reader, General Manager Corporate Administration at the European Regions Airline Association, says: “I am delighted to welcome Andrew Kelly as ERA’s new President and would like to thank outgoing President Boet Kreiken for his excellent work over the past four years. I also warmly welcome our re-elected Vice Presidents Carlos Bertomeu and Jan Palmer, and all the new and re-elected board members. All have a very strong background in European aviation and the ERA team is looking forward to working with them. Thank you also to all our current board members for their continued support guiding and steering the work of ERA.”

Luiz Placido Lapa wins the ERA Personal Excellence Award
Luiz Placido Lapa, Managing Director of TAP express operated by Portugalia Airlines, revealed as the winner of the ERA Award for Personal Excellence. Lapa was praised for his long and successful career in regional aviation and for his commitment to ERA’s work.

The European Regions Airline Association (ERA) hosted the association’s prestigious annual awards dinner on 18 October as part of the association’s General Assembly, taking place this year in Athens, Greece. The ERA Award for Personal Excellence, this year sponsored by Embraer, celebrates the individual’s achievements and contribution to European aviation.

Paula Bangle, General Manager Membership, Business Development and Communications at ERA, says: “Huge congratulations to Luiz Placido Lapa, winner of the ERA Award for Personal Excellence. Luiz is devoted to the regional aviation industry, having worked in the business for nearly 40 years, first at TAP and then helping to launch one of the founding regional airlines and brands, Portugalia Airlines, and progressing to the role of Managing Director. Luiz is hugely respected by everyone who works with him and regarded as an ambassador for the business.”

Romanian airline Blue Air received the Airline of the Year Silver award and SAS was awarded the Bronze award.

TAP express operated by Portugalia Airlines revealed as ERA Gold Airline of the Year winner
At the ceremony, TAP express operated by Portugalia Airlines was declared the winner of the prestigious ERA Airline of the Year Gold award, sponsored by ATR. The independent judging panel praised the airline for completing a total fleet renewal during the course of 12 months and managing a full, almost 3,800-hour retraining programme for its pilots, engineers and cabin crew while undergoing a total rebranding at the same time.

Luiz Placido Lapa, Managing Director of TAP express operated by Portugalia Airlines, commented: “The year of 2016 was crucial in Portugalia’s history and the new TAP express brand was the beginning of a new cycle. In addition to the rebranding project, the phase-in of nine Embraer 190s simultaneously with the phase-out of another two fleets (six Fokker 100s and eight Embraer 145s), involving almost 3,800 training hours, resulted in a huge effort from the entire company. It is a great pride for us to be given this award as it is a mark of a mission accomplished. We believe that TAP express is already a brand cherished by customers and that’s what we work for every day.”

Gheorghe Racaru, CEO of Blue Air, commented on receiving the Silver award: “It is a proud moment for us at Blue Air to receive the Airline of the Year Silver Award. We are grateful for this recognition. 2016 has been a great year for Blue Air, as the company grew in every aspect: fleet, number of routes, transported passengers, opening a new operational base, becoming a full member of IATA, all contributing to Blue Air being the largest Romanian airline. Our clients have always been our focus and are the first ones benefiting from our expanding route network, allowing them to travel fast, safely and inexpensively to their destinations. We deeply appreciate this award and are flattered to be part of this year’s award recipients.”

SAS received the Bronze award. Mikael Wangdahl, VP External Production at SAS, said: “We are very excited to win this award. In the last few years, wet lease has become a very important part of our strategy to ensure growth and also to be able to fly our customers to more destinations. We only work with experienced carriers in Europe and this is also an important element for us and for our customers. We look forward to further developing business with more ERA airline members, the experts in regional flying.”

London City Airport wins the ERA Airport of the Year award
London City Airport announced as the winner of the prestigious ERA Airport of the Year award. The airport was praised for its major investment in its new terminal extension, creating 500 jobs, which in turn will lead to 1,600 more jobs upon completion.

The airport achieved, for the first time, a record breaking 4.5m annual passengers.

The European Regions Airline Association (ERA) Airport of the Year award, this year sponsored by the Irish Aviation Authority, celebrates the achievements of ERA member airports. The awards ceremony took place in Athens on Wednesday 18 October as part of the association’s annual General Assembly. The award is judged by an independent panel comprised of senior industry experts, including past CEOs of European airlines, highly-respected aviation journalists and academics.

Paula Bangle, General Manager Business Development, Membership and Communications at ERA, comments: “London City Airport, a powerhouse of a regional airport and the winner of this year’s ERA Airport of the Year award, is always pushing forward for the best passenger experience in a capacity-constrained space. The major investment in its new terminal extension, creating 500 jobs and another 1,600 more upon completion, is highly commendable. Huge congratulations to the whole team at London City Airport.”

Richard Hill, Chief Commercial Officer at London City Airport, said: “This is deserved recognition for London City Airport on the European stage in its 30th anniversary year and we thank the European Regions Airline Association (ERA) for this accolade. It follows record-breaking passenger growth and a winning formula which differentiates the airport not just in London but across Europe.

“The airport is on the cusp of an exciting next chapter, with a £400 million development programme and the UK’s first digital air traffic control tower, setting a new standard for the global aviation industry to follow. Meanwhile our quick check-in and arrivals process, convenient location, and easy public transport access, continues to make London City an attractive airport for both business and leisure passengers.”

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