AJW Group Appoints Whitty as Director of Aircraft and Engine Procurement

AJW Group has announced the appointment of Tony Whitty as director of Aircraft and Engine Procurement. Whitty who joined the business on 29th November 2021, will be responsible for aircraft and engine acquisitions across the AJW Group.

The company says Whitty will use his diverse experience in aircraft remarketing for airlines, banks and other aircraft owners to assist AJW Group in its aircraft and engine trading business.

Whitty started his career in aircraft remarketing in 1990 with Fortis Aviation. He has been based both in Europe and the USA and has achieved considerable success in aircraft remarketing on behalf of a variety of airline and financial sector clients. Whitty was one of the founders of Cabot Aviation in 1998 and subsequently worked for Air Partner since 2015.

Whitty will be based at AJW’s Headquarters in Slinfold, West Sussex, UK and will report directly to the Group President and CEO, Christopher Whiteside.

Tony is a committee member and treasurer of The Aviation Club UK and a member of ISTAT.

“At AJW, we rely heavily on the excellent relationships we have with airlines, banks and lessors across the industry to help us source inventory for our business,” said Christopher Whiteside, president and CEO of AJW Group. “Tony’s appointment reflects our commitment to delivering market-leading services as we continue to expand and support our customers in their pursuit of ever-improved efficiency and operational reliability. Tony’s wealth of industry experience will be instrumental to our future aircraft and engine procurement strategy and we warmly welcome him to the business.”

Whitty added: “I am delighted to join AJW as Director of Aircraft and Engine Procurement. As a fast-growing and global business, AJW’s strategic procurement strategy is central to ensuring it maintains the high standards that it is known for around the world.”

Safran Electrical & Power’s Interconnection Systems Americas Appoints Varela as EVP/GM

Starting on December 1st, 2021, Ricardo Varela is appointed executive vice president and general manager of Safran Electrical & Power’s Interconnection Systems Americas division, which specializes in aeronautical electrical cabling for western hemisphere. He will replace Jorge Ortega, who has been appointed CEO of Safran Cabin.

Varela began his career in 1996 as General Manager of Integradora Makawi (agro industry). In 2000, he joined Johnson Controls (automotive) as Maintenance Repair & Overhaul (MRO) and Logistics leader.

In 2002, he was hired by Labinal in Chihuahua, which has since become Safran Electrical & Power, as Materials superintendent. In 2004, he was appointed program manager for Hawker Beechcraft, then in 2006, he became General Manager Design Office for Mexico. In 2008, he joined the Everett site in the US as Engineering leader of the Boeing 787 end-to-end program.

In 2010, he was appointed general manager of Safran Engineering Services Americas, and then in 2018, he became Vice President of Boeing projects for the Interconnection Systems Americas division in addition to this role.

Varela, 48, is a graduate of the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (1996), Mexico.

Four Corners Aviation Forms Senior Leadership Team

Four Corners Aviation President and COO Cameron Gowans has announced initial appointments to the company’s senior leadership team. The team will provide leadership to the new organization dedicated to enabling customers to have all the benefits of their own scalable aviation department.

“We are proud of this newly formed team of skilled industry professionals, which will take the Corporate Jet as a Service (CJaaS), a fully integrated lift solution offered through ‘Freedom by Four Corners Aviation,’ to clients across the country,” said Gowans. “This powerful group is charged with ensuring that we execute well and deliver the best product to our clientele.” Freedom by Four Corners Aviation is a way for clients to enjoy the multiple benefits of private jet travel, without worrying about ownership, financing, operations, insurance, crew management, maintenance, or any of the additional aggravations associated with private jet travel.
Diana Schneider
Phil Leone
Ray Bennett
Mike Jefcoat
This approach to business jet access protects and preserves shareholder and client capital.

Here are the new people and positions:

Client Services: Diana Schneider, vice president, Client Services, joined the organization now known as Four Corners Aviation in 2019. She began her career in aviation as an accountant / controller in 2007, and acquired her unique understanding of the industry through the changing needs of operators with which she was affiliated. This allowed her to learn many different aspects of aviation.   Schneider possesses extensive financial, managerial and organizational experience in a variety of other industries as well. She gained valuable knowledge as part of a start-up and consulted for organizations that were in the process of restructuring. She holds a bachelor’s, as well as a post-graduate certificate, from Montclair State University.  

Sales: Ray Bennett Vice President, Sales, brings 30 years of aviation sales experience to Four Corners Aviation. He has been in sales and sales management roles for avionics, fractional aircraft, aircraft manufacturers, aircraft parts distribution, and aircraft management organizations.   Bennett grew up in an aviation-based family in Omaha, Neb., and is a graduate of Nebraska Wesleyan University. He is a multi-engine commercial pilot and certified drone pilot.  

Operations: Mike Jefcoat, vice president, Operations, has been in aviation for over 25 years. He began his professional career as a pilot for Delta Connection, flying both domestic and international routes. During his 18 years as an airline pilot, Jefcoat amassed more than 11,000 flight hours, the majority as a captain on Bombardier’s series of regional jets.   In addition to his time in the cockpit, he served as a consultant with ATP Flight School to assist and implement an industry leading jet transition course for aspiring professional pilots. He also spent several years as a volunteer in aviation security with the Air Line Pilots Association at local and national levels. In 2017, Jefcoat made the transition to business aviation as the chief pilot for FlightWorks, Inc., where he rose to director of operations.   He also served as an FAA approved check airman on the Hawker 800 and Challenger 300 series of aircraft. In his time with FlightWorks, he was awarded a business aviation leadership scholarship through Georgia State University and the Georgia Business Aviation Association. He graduated cum laude from Utah Valley University, with a bachelor’s in aviation science.  

Safety and Security: Phil Leone, vice president, Safety and Security, brings 27 years of aviation experience to Four Corners Aviation. He served 26 years in the New York Air National Guard as an aircraft commander, instructor and evaluator in the C-5A Galaxy, as well as an aircraft commander in the C-17 Globemaster, flying missions in theaters throughout the world.   Leone is an Air Force trained safety professional having served as the chief of safety for the 105th Airlift Wing in Newburgh, N.Y., with over a billion dollars of aircraft and 1,200 personnel. He is type rated in the Boeing 757, 767 and serves as a 777 first officer for a major 121 carrier. He is a general aviation enthusiast who has logged hundreds of hours flying cross country with his family in a Mooney 231 and an Aerostar 600A.

West Star Aviation Promotes Sonsoucie to Project Manager

West Star Aviation announced the promotion of John Sonsoucie to project manager at their East Alton, IL (ALN) facility. 

Sonsoucie is a Navy veteran serving from 1986-1992 with VFA-126 and VFA 25 onboard the USS Independence and USS Midway, and has been with West Star since 2014 as an avionics supervisor.

“John is a strong asset to West Star and know he will continue to grow with the company while offering his vast knowledge and expertise to the team,” said Scott Koehler, senior manager of Project Management (ALN).

“I appreciate West Star providing me the opportunities for advancement within such a progressive and growing company,” said Sonsoucie, project manager (ALN).

AMETEK MRO Singapore Appoints Mariotto as Director of Operations

AMETEK Singapore has appointed Greg Mariotto as director of Operations, Singapore. Mariotto will be responsible for production, engineering, purchasing, and quality.  

“I am pleased and excited to take on this new role at AMETEK MRO,” says Mariotto.  “It is an opportunity to take our processes to the next level from an operational stand-point. Utilising quality management and business systems, such as AS9110, will help us achieve seamless connectivity between our business support functions and operations to benefit our customers.”

Mariotto foresees a significant focus on the development, implementation and use of lean manufacturing and continuous improvement protocols over the next 12 months.  

“My short-term priority will be on increasing our customer satisfaction by expanding our operational MRO footprint and technical expertise with new capabilities that are currently being established in Singapore, including a wheels & brakes facility for bizjets and commercial operators and A350 cargo and galley heaters,” comments Mariotto.  “Successful, on time delivery of each new capability is not only key for our business and long-term sustainability, but also provides an increased depth of local MRO support for our customers who can be assured they will receive a safe, reliable, cost-competitive service with shorter TATs.” 

“Greg’s appointment demonstrates our focus on building a highly skilled and experienced senior team,” says David Corish, Vice President & General Manager AMETEK MRO Singapore. “As the diverse Asia PAC market evolves there are significant opportunities to support operators and OEMs, so ensuring our MRO facilities operate at maximum efficiency is a priority.  Greg’s knowledge of process improvement and visual factory principles will help us to streamline our processes, reduce turn-around-times and increase our customer satisfaction.” 

Mariotto joins AMETEK MRO with more than twenty years’ experience within the aviation MRO sector, most recently with Collins Aerospace, and he is a qualified AS9100 and AS9110 trainer.  

AWAM Scholarship Applications Open

The Association for Women in Aviation Maintenance (AWAM) Scholarship season is officially open. Apply now at www.awam.org/scholarships. AWAM has scholarships available for all genders and career levels.

AWAM says they are “extremely excited” that for the first time, AWAM is offering its own $3,279 tuition scholarship for a woman attending a Part 147 AMT program or an A&P seeking a degree related to maintenance management, education, or engineering. This is solely possible due to aviation community support this scholarship through the donate tab on their website.

Deadline for the scholarship applications this year is December 31st, 2021 with the exception of two Louisville Chapter Scholarships due December 1st.

The application is online at http://www.awam.org/scholarships. If you have any questions on that please email scholarships@awam.org. Please read the information on the flyer carefully in order to understand what is required for each application you choose to submit and make sure you meet the requirements that are specified in the flyers. Incomplete applications will not be considered in the selection process.

LHT Appoints Ouzounidis New Head of Corporate Sales for the Americas

Georgios Ouzounidis, currently responsible for Corporate Sales Western Europe at Lufthansa Technik AG, has been appointed vice president Corporate Sales for the Americas, effective 1 January 2022. He will succeed Frank Berweger, who will be leaving the company to take on a new challenge outside the Lufthansa Group.

Ouzounidis began his career in the sales support department of Lufthansa Technik in 1999 and has held several positions within the company since then. Corporate Sales for Western Europe has been under his leadership since 2015.

“I am happy, that with Georgios we found a highly professional, customer centric and experienced manager who will be able to seamlessly continue to drive the current growth path of our company in this strategic region,” said Dr. Johannes Bussmann, chairman of the Executive Board of Lufthansa Technik.

He continued: “I would like to thank Frank Berweger for the excellent job he has done over the past seven years in the Americas. Under his leadership, our regional sales team was successful in positioning Lufthansa Technik as MRO partner of choice for many American customers, thereby more than doubling our market share in a highly competitive environment.”

Ouzounidis will move with his family from Hamburg, Germany to Miami, USA and completes Lufthansa Technik’s corporate sales senior leadership team, consisting of Kai-Stefan Roepke, who is responsible for EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) and Thomas Boettger, who is heading the sales activities for the Asia Pacific region.

AAR Names Knudson VP, Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer

AAR announced that Lori Knudson has joined the company as vice president, chief ethics and compliance officer. Knudson will report to Jessica Garascia, AAR vice president, general counsel and secretary, and will be responsible for oversight of AAR’s compliance function.  

“We are excited to add Lori to our legal team, where she will enhance our compliance program and continue to ensure we are adhering to the highest ethical principles,” said Jessica Garascia.  

“Lori’s appointment as an officer of AAR underscores the importance we place on compliance. We are confident Lori will continue to help drive a culture of compliance and integrity at AAR,” adds John Holmes, AAR president & CEO.

Knudson was most recently with Aegion Corporation, serving as senior vice president, Compliance, Risk and Internal Audit, where she was responsible for overseeing enterprise risk management and global compliance. Knudson began her career as an attorney with the law firm of Thomson Coburn. She holds a bachelor’s degree from University of Rochester and a juris doctorate from St. Louis University School of Law.

BriskHeat Picks Bostrom as Eastern Zone Sales Manager

BriskHeat has named Alyssia Bostrom to lead its East Coast sales program. As the Eastern Zone Sales Manager, Bostrom will be responsible for the territories’ sales strategy, including developing new business opportunities, managing existing accounts, and creating customized solutions for customer applications.

Bostrom brings with her more than 20 years’ experience in sales and account management. She has worked with both government agencies and private industry. Bostrom holds a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Alabama, Huntsville.

In her roles prior to joining BriskHeat, Bostrom consistently grew territory sales in many industries, including aerospace, automotive, composites, defense, energy, and infrastructure.

“We are pleased to welcome Ms. Bostrom and know she will be a valuable addition to our Sales team,” said John Li, senior vice president Sales and Marketing. “With Alyssia’s extensive technical knowledge and experience, she will be a great service to customers in her territory.”

West Star Adds Decker as the New Citation Project Manager at ALN

West Star announced Brian Decker as the new Citation Project Manager at their East Alton, IL (ALN) facility.

Decker has more than 30 years of aviation experience, 15 of those at Jet Aviation along with Windwalker, Solarius, Cessna and Dallas Airmotive. He received his A&P license from Lewis University.

“Brian will be a great addition to the team with his long history in aviation, maintenance background and passion to learn even more,” said Scott Koehler, senior manager of project management (ALN).

“I was a long-time customer of West Star’s and I’m excited to provide the same great customer services that I received, while continuing to build rewarding business relationships,” said Decker.