Monday, December 11, 2017

New hand on the throttle for YPR; Richard Leach takes up duties as new Airport Manager

Six months after the installation of a new approach to the make up of the Board for the Prince Rupert Airport Society, the Prince Rupert Airport now has a new Airport Manager.

Richard Leach  took up his duties over the course of the last month, seemingly the successful applicant to an executive search process that the YPR Board launched in early August, when they put out the call for new manager for the city's Digby Island airport.

That employment listing from August indicated a range of duties for the position under the direction of the Board of Directors, they include:

Direct supervision, scheduling and training of airport staff; 
Administration of the collective agreement; 
Management of airfield operations, emergency planning, facility and equipment maintenance, an aircraft refueling dealership and other operations as required; 
Budgeting and financial management; 
Marketing, customer and community relations; and Business and commercial development initiatives.

As well the Airport Manager and the board will be preparing strategic plans for the future growth and development of Airport lands and facilities, managing tenant agreements and liaising with federal regulatory agencies, airline staff, general aviation groups, local government bodies and other interested groups.

So far, there has been no official announcement posted to the YPR website or released through the City of Prince Rupert, to welcome the new manager to the community, or share some of his background in aviation.

Mr. Leach has already been quick to his work at Digby Island facility, recently putting out the Help Wanted Sign , with a job opportunity now available for an Administration Clerk.

As noted above, the Airport Board is now working under a revised level of oversight with a strong contingent of City of Prince Rupert staff members providing for the duties of the Board.

In April of this year, the City's Corporate Administrator, Mr. Rory Mandryk, Mr. Paul Venditelli from the Prince Rupert and Port Edward Development Department and Mr. Richard Pucci, the city's Director of Operations were all assigned to the Board.

As part of that announcement, Mr. Venditelli was named to the position of Board Chair.

The Board works as part of the Airport Authority, which also includes Lee Brain, the Mayor of Prince Rupert, the City Administrator and one other City Council member.

Adding to the volume of travellers through the Prince Rupert
Airport will be one of the many tasks ahead for the new Airport Manager

(Photo from NCLGA )

Mr. Leach takes over the controls of the airport as competition to the east continues to grow, with the Terrace-Kitimat airport expanding once again, responding to rising passenger levels to provide for larger departure and arrival facilities for that Northwest air transportation facility.

For the new YPR head, one of the key tasks ahead could be to try an attract a wider range of flight options out of the city, which at the moment is currently served by only one airline, Air Canada Jazz.

One potential option for the future could a new aviation initiative that WestJet recently outlined. with its plans to expand some of its service by use of feeder airlines such as Pacific Coastal, introducing what is being called their WestJet Link service to a number of communities.

Though, as things sit at this point, Prince Rupert does not appear to be on the approach path to a destination board for points south or east.

You can find more items of interest related to air travel in the Northwest from our archive page.

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