Duane Ekedahl, Alan R. Stephens, Walt Coleman, Debby McElroy and Roger Cohen are among the names of Regional Airlines Association executives who have led this organization over its 38 years. Add Faye Malarkey Black to that list. The association of carriers which addresses hot legislative issues including the availability of pilots, Essential Air Services, FAA Reauthorization and a host of tough safety/economic issues.
Linda Markham, RAA Board Chairman and Cape Air President, made it clear that Ms. Black won the job by her performance as RAA interim president. Here’s the Chairwoman’s quote:
“Faye certainly rose to the occasion as interim President and her strong leadership skills were especially evident during the RAA Convention. Her impeccable work ethic, coupled with a keen understanding of the issues affecting the regional airline industry has earned her the respect and support of the RAA Board and staff. We look forward to working with Faye, the RAA team, and policymakers as we work together on workable solutions to the issues affecting our industry.”
The new President previously held the RAA Senior Vice President, Government Affairs position. For that assignment the Board became confidant in her capability to provide policy guidance and insight. Her record shows that she was able to build cross-industry coalitions (witness the above picture of her next to A4A’s CEO). Her RAA advocacy on the Hill showed that she was able to protect safe air service to communities of all sizes.
Prior to joining RAA, Ms. Black was an executive at SmithBucklin, the firm which manages a number of trade associations. With that firm she provided management consulting and strategic planning services to trade associations and helped develop business support networks in emerging democracies under a USAID subcontract.
Welcome to the RAA leadership role, Ms. Black. She is not the first woman to be its President (Ms. McElroy was the pioneer), but she may be the only aviation trade association female executive to have a woman as her boss.