Johannesburg, 28 May 2019, The Board of Airline Representatives of South Africa (BARSA) has appointed a new Board of Directors at its Annual General Meeting held at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Rosebank on 24 May. The AGM brought together the organisation’s members to discuss progress on its strategy and set new priorities for the association for the next twelve months.

Nine members were elected to the Board to ensure delivery of the organisation’s strategic objectives and drive the agenda for the next year. Collaboration with all stakeholders in the aviation, travel and tourism industry remains the key focus for the new Board.

June Crawford, Chief Executive Officer of BARSA says that she is confident in the newly elected board members and in their abilities to take the aviation industry to greater heights.

“I look forward to further advancing the industry with our new members at the helm. We are confident that we have selected the right mix of passionate and knowledgeable individuals who will make invaluable contributions to our organisation.” Crawford said.

Carla da Silva, Air Mauritius Regional Manager: Southern Africa and Latin America, was re-elected as the Chairperson. She has 21 years’ experience in the aviation industry and Michaela Messner, Regional Manager responsible for Africa at Qantas Airways, has been elected Deputy Chairperson. She has been involved in the travel industry since 1992.

South African Airways (SAA) holds a permanent seat of Joint Deputy Chairman of BARSA – a courtesy provision made for the national carrier, given its strategic role in the country’s aviation industry. Darren Hay, Specialist in International Affairs at SAA, remains their representative.

The other members are Dr André Schulz, General Manager for Southern Africa Lufthansa Group, including Austrian Airlines, Lufthansa and SWISS and Liezl Gericke, Head of Middle East and Africa for Virgin Atlantic, overseeing South Africa, Nigeria and the UAE who were re-elected.

Isaack Wambua, Qatar Airways’ Country Manager for South Africa, previously Country Manager for Sudan and Nigeria at Qatar Airways and Country Manager for Cameroon at Kenya Airways will also be joining the board. He brings with him vast and diverse continental experience. Abel Alemu, Regional Manager, Southern Africa at Ethiopian Airlines, Wouter Vermeulen, General Manager, Air France Southern Africa and Karlene Barkley, Etihad’s Country Manager for South Africa will also join the team bringing a vast skillset and fresh perspective to the board.
Carla da Silva, Chairperson of BARSA congratulated the new board with assurance.

“I want to thank all the members of BARSA for their contribution to the association and for the good work they did in the last financial year. We’re very excited that we have managed to increase our membership and the Executive Committee with the involvement of new member airlines. I will continue to do my best for BARSA and the aviation industry in South Africa working closely and consistently with various stakeholders to add value.” said da Silva.

Note to editors:
The Board of Airline Representatives of South Africa (BARSA) represents the interests of its African and International members to government, airport operators and other stakeholders in the airline industry with the aim of facilitating and further developing a safe, efficient and viable aviation industry in South Africa. BARSA provides a single concerted voice on policy and other matters in relation to government and other stakeholders in transport, business and tourism. As members of Business Unity South Africa (BUSA), BARSA remains a critical role player, offering a voice to African and International airlines operating to and from the Republic of South Africa.

Issued on behalf of BARSA. For media interviews, please contact:
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