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The new members of Airlink’s Governors Council include Scott Kirby, Chief Executive Officer of United Airlines, and Robert Isom, CEO of American Airlines, and highlights the aviation industry’s continued commitment to disaster responses and the delivery of humanitarian aid to some of the world’s most vulnerable communities.
Washington D.C., Aug. 19, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Celebrating World Humanitarian Day and National Aviation Day (August 19th), Airlink has announced the addition of seven aviation industry leaders to its prestigious Governors Council. Airlink plays a unique role in enabling collaboration between the private and philanthropic sectors to provide free air transport to a global network of 150 disaster response nonprofit organizations responding to natural and man-made disasters worldwide.
Airlink’s Governors Council comprises leaders in the aviation and logistics sector who (personally or through their organization) inspire other individuals and organizations to join the aviation industry’s leading disaster relief movement. Governors Council members are invited to join the group based on their and their company’s support of Airlink. Members are current CEOs (or equivalent) of Airlink’s partners. All share a dedication to helping people and communities impacted by natural and man-made disasters.
The newly appointed members include prominent figures from top passenger and cargo carriers, each dedicated to making a positive impact in the aviation industry and the global community. Their airlines have played a key role in Airlink’s responses to the Hawaii Wildfires, the cholera outbreak in Haiti, earthquakes in Turkey and Syria, and the delivery of humanitarian aid to Ukraine and neighboring countries supporting displaced Ukrainians. The new members of Airlink’s Governors Council are:
- Scott Kirby – CEO, United Airlines
- Michael Steen – CEO, Atlas Air
- Robert Isom – CEO, American Airlines
- Bob Jordan – President and CEO, Southwest Airlines
- Ben Minicucci – President and CEO, Alaska Airlines
- Tim Strauss – CEO, Amerijet
- Güliz Öztürk – CEO, Pegasus
“We are delighted to welcome these distinguished aviation leaders to Airlink’s Governors Council,” said Steven J. Smith, President and CEO of Airlink. “The aviation industry plays a crucial role in global humanitarian efforts, and Airlink serves as a critical bridge between the private sector, airlines, and humanitarian organizations to deliver aid and hope to communities facing adversity worldwide.”
World Humanitarian Day and National Aviation Day on the same date hold a special significance for Airlink. By leveraging the resources and capabilities of its airline and aviation industry partners (through in-kind and cash donations), Airlink facilitates the rapid and free transportation of aid and responders to disaster-affected regions, ensuring that help reaches those in need swiftly. The organization supports a pre-screened global network of 150 NGO partners with free transport and logistical coordination.
Because Airlink covers the cost of transport for its NGO partners, those NGOs can then procure more supplies of aid and conduct longer and more extensive disaster response and humanitarian crisis programs. “The aviation and logistics industries are the unsung heroes of disaster response,” said Steve Smith. “The first step in disaster response is getting there.”
Airlink (www.airlinkflight.org) is a nonprofit organization providing free air transport and logistical coordination for pre-screened nonprofits to deliver disaster responders and supplies in the wake of humanitarian crises worldwide. Its network includes more than 150 aid organizations and 47 commercial and charter airlines. Its first mission was in response to the Haiti earthquake. Since its inception in 2010, Airlink’s airline partners have flown nearly 10,000 relief workers and transported nearly 8,000,000 pounds of humanitarian cargo, saving nonprofits over $23 million in air transport costs and directly helping over 39 million people. In addition, Airlink receives in-kind gifts from airlines and donations from organizations and individuals within the aviation sector. In 2022 the humanitarian aid Airlink moved assisted almost 13 million people in the aftermath of natural and man-made disasters. For more information, visit www.airlinkflight.org.