FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Thursday June 7, 2007
Marlena Fernández Berkowitz/Sarah Moss, Mayor’s Office, 720-865-9016
Chuck Cannon, Denver International Airport, 303-342-2250
Denver International Airport Manager Turner West to Retire in 2008
City Launches International Search for New Aviation Manager
(DENVER) Manager of Aviation Turner West announced today that he will retire in the spring of 2008. To identify the best possible candidates and ensure an ample transition period, the search process for a new manager will begin immediately.
“Turner had promised to stay through our first term and has graciously extended his service at our request,” Mayor John Hickenlooper said. “We are grateful for the additional time we will have him at Denver International Airport’s helm. He has helped make DIA one of the premier airports in the world. While guiding DIA through a tumultuous time in the airline industry, Turner and the DIA team helped the airport grow to almost 50 million passengers a year and brought in new carriers and international non-stop flights. He will be missed. We are committed to finding a new manager who will continue to enhance DIA’s record of customer service, economic success and international prominence.”
The City and County of Denver will hire an executive search firm to lead the recruitment effort. The firm will launch an international search over the summer with the aim of providing a list of candidates for consideration in the fall. The goal is to have the new manager in place in early 2008, enabling him/her to work alongside West during the transition.
“I wanted to announce my retirement now so that Mayor Hickenlooper has ample time to find an outstanding manager to lead this great airport and continue our record of achievement,” West said. “This is an exciting time for DIA, and the new manager will lead the airport through an important transition by seeking more international non-stop routes, crossing the 50 million passenger threshold, and overseeing implementation of a new master plan.”
A 41-year veteran of the aviation industry West has spent 22 years working for the Denver airport system. West began his career working for Braniff International airlines, Texas International, and Frontier in various maintenance and engineering management capacities. In 1985, he was named Director of Maintenance for Denver’s Stapleton International Airport, and later assumed responsibilities for both maintenance and engineering at Denver International Airport. He served as DIA’s Deputy Manager of Aviation for maintenance and engineering before Mayor Hickenlooper appointed him as a Co-Manager of Aviation in 2003 and Manager of Aviation in 2006.
During West’s tenure, DIA negotiated new agreements with Frontier and United enabling both airlines to continue growing in Denver; opened the longest commercial runway at 16,000 feet in North America; welcomed Southwest Airlines back to Colorado; increased domestic and international flights, including Lufthansa’s new nonstop route to Munich; opened a new 16-gate regional jet facility with 13 loading bridges; received a #1 customer service rating from J.D. Powers and Associates, and was rated the #1 airport in America by Business Traveler magazine. Airport revenues increased 13% to $501 million, while passenger volume grew 33% to 47.3 million annual passengers during this period. By increasing non-airline revenues by 40%, DIA was able to lower airline landing fees thereby saving passengers’ money and attracting more carriers. West is currently overseeing the development of a new master plan for future growth at DIA.
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