Flybe, Europe’s largest regional airline, is proud to announce that at the 74th Annual General Meeting of the International Air Transport Association (IATA) being held in Sydney, Australia, CEO Christine Ourmières-Widener has been appointed (5th June 1018) to its Board of Governors.
She is the only woman on the 31-member body which heads the influential trade association that represents some 290 airlines, equating to 82% of the world’s total air traffic. As such, IATA’s role is critical in supporting many areas of aviation activity, helping to formulate industry policy on critical aviation issues.
Ms Ourmières-Widener has long taken an active personal and professional interest in industry matters and is a former Vice-President and current Board member at the European Regions Airline Association (ERA), an organisation that works closely with IATA through its European Industry Affairs Committee. She was initially elected to the IATA Board of Governors in an interim move in April 2017 when Fernando Pinto, CEO of TAP, stood down.
Following her now long-term appointment to the IATA Board, she comments: “I am delighted and honoured to have been elected and look forward with great enthusiasm to contributing to the important work that IATA does for the industry. I am, of course, also passionate about diversity and so am privileged to bring this dimension to the Board.”
Christine’s career in the industry spans 30 years. She started as an engineer in Air France in 1988 before progressing in the company to become the airline’s UK and Ireland General Manager and ultimately a Vice President based in New York.
After leaving Air France she was appointed Chief Executive of CityJet between 2010 and 2015. In this role she led a turnaround of the airline under new investors, steered its new fleet strategy and took the airline into a new business area as a capacity provider to airlines across Europe that continues today. Between 2015 and 2017 she worked as Chief Global Sales Officer for American Express Global Business Travel.
Christine was appointed as the CEO of Flybe in January 2017 to lead the airline through a turnaround following several years of low profitability at the airline. She remains one of the few female airline CEOs in the industry and is a huge advocate for encouraging women to work in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) roles as well as senior corporate roles.