ST JOHN’S, Antigua – The search has begun for a new chief executive officer for regional carrier, LIAT, following the resignation, yesterday, of Brian Challenger.
He steps down officially on June 30 ending three years of being at the helm of an airline which has seen much turbulence, including several bouts of region-wide industrial action and public wrangling with the workers’ bargaining agents.
However, Chairman of the Board of Directors, Jean Holder described Challenger’s tenure as one of “loyalty, dedication and hard work”, during a “difficult period.”
When contacted by OBSERVER Media, the out-going CEO said he had “no comment at this time,” but this newspaper has learnt that he is to resume a consultancy practice.
Challenger, who led the carrier back to profitability after several years of consecutive losses, served as LIAT’s acting CEO since Mark Darby’s contract ended in April 2009.
While remaining tight-lipped about his plans, the former airline executive has expressed his “appreciation to LIAT’s Board of Directors and thanked the company’s lead shareholders and staff, for the opportunity to serve the region.”
Over the next two months, the acting CEO will work with the executive management team to facilitate a smooth transition to a new chief executive officer.
Chief Financial Officer Julie Reifer-Jones will act in the interim.
(More in today’s Daily OBSERVER)