First Air appoints industry veteran Chris Avery as CEO

posted on 2nd October 2018 by Justin Burns
First Air appoints industry veteran Chris Avery as CEO

Following the merger of the airlines First Air and Canadian North on Friday 28 September – the board of directors has appointed Chris Avery as the new First Air president and chief executive officer (CEO).

Avery formerly the vice president of customer and commercial operations at the airline. He joined First Air in 2017, and previously held senior management positions at WestJet, Alaska Airlines, Canadian Airlines International, and Transat Holidays.

The board and Makivik Corporation said they wish to express their “sincere appreciation” for the leadership of Brock Friesen in his role as president and CEO.

Makivik president, Charlie Wat said: “Friday was an historic day for Inuit and Inuvialuit as we signed an agreement to merge the two airlines by the end of the year. We are embarking in a new era of northern aviation, and we would like to thank Brock Friesen for his five years of service to First Air as President and CEO.”

Johnny Adams will concurrently take on a greater role in the airline as executive chairman, expanding his role as the current chairman of the First Air board.

Adams has served on the First Air board of directors for over 10 years and since June 2017, has been the chairman of the First Air board.

“With our new planned partnership with Inuvialuit Corporate Group, we are focusing on cooperative relationships with our new partners and on the customers and communities we currently serve as well as on strategic opportunities on the horizon.

“We have great confidence in Mr. Avery’s abilities to deliver on this new direction,” he said.

The senior executive changes took effect as of 1 October 2018.