European Regions Airline Association (ERA) has welcomed several new airline representatives to its highly experienced Board, including KLM Cityhopper, SATA Air Açores and Widerøe.
The ERA Board continues to strengthen with the addition of three new representatives, following ERA’s most recent election. The new airline representatives, each bringing with them a wealth of knowledge and experience, include: Maarten Koopmans, Managing Director, KLM Cityhopper (pictured); Luís Rodrigues, President and CEO, SATA Air Açores; and Silje Brandvoll, Vice President Communications and Public Relations, Widerøe.
As a seasoned airline professional, KLM’s Koopmans holds broad experience, including being active in airline sustainability and KLM’s worldwide leading position. Koopmans said: “It is fundamental to bring our industry to a sustainable future and for our European policy and decision makers to understand how to reach that path. I am personally committed to lead the industry to a real sustainable future. Being part of the ERA Board gives me the voice to bring these plans and ideas across to policy and decision makers.”
With insight from an ultra-peripheral region of Europe, SATA Air Açores’ Rodrigues has experience of building consensus in highly polarised and challenging contexts, particularly following recent transformation at SATA airlines. Rodrigues said: “Europe is, more than anything, a social construct, where the risk exists that peripheral entities and people are kept aside. The ERA Board plays a critical role in bringing our airlines to the centre of relevant discussions and brings insight and learning to the regions.”
A dedicated communications and public relations specialist with an extensive industry track record, Widerøe’s Brandvoll has worked closely with ERA for several years through other functions, and is a strong believer in the power of collaboration. Brandvoll said: “There is no doubt that policy over the last few years has seriously damaged European connectivity, skewed the competition in regional airlines disfavour and made it very hard for European regional airlines to present a profitable operation. We need ERA to voice our concerns and the possible consequences of such policies if allowances are not made.”
Welcoming the new representatives, Montserrat Barriga, Director General, ERA, said: “I am very pleased to have Maarten, Luís and Silje join the ERA Board. All three bring with them expansive knowledge within the aviation industry, as well as commitment to protecting the regions of Europe, and they all come from airlines that provide essential sustainable connectivity within our continent. I look forward to working with them further on behalf of our members.”