The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) board of directors has selected Timothy R Obitts as its president and CEO. He succeeds Gary Dempsey, who assumed the role of NATA's president after six years of service on the association's board of directors, including a term as chairman of the board.
“It is a great honour to be at the helm of an association with such a rich history and bright future. NATA's relevance is even more important now than it was 80 years ago as we look toward the advent of new technology, ingenuity that continuously raises the bar on safety, and an ever-increasing commitment to greater environmental stewardship,” states Obitts. “I join the board, the staff and the members in expressing gratitude to Gary Dempsey for leveraging his extensive experience, both at the board level and as president, to help elevate the association and industry. I look forward to continuing to work with the Board and our talented staff to further his legacy.”
Board chairman Curt Castagna adds: “Gary has been, and will always be, a pillar of the aviation community. NATA and its members are forever grateful for the guidance he provided throughout his tenure. His ties to the industry and the relationships that he developed over the course of his career are lifelong. This transition follows a succession plan set up by the board to provide continuity that best supports and benefits the membership, and we are fortunate to have worked alongside someone as devoted, connected and knowledgeable as Gary.
“NATA, under Timothy Obitts' leadership as chief operating officer, has grown and thrived in new ways demonstrating the association's positive evolution to a changing industry. For the past five years, Tim has consistently demonstrated the value of NATA to our members through his leadership, effective advocacy, creating strong partnerships that advance our mission, and in the development of innovative products and services that address the unique needs of our membership. Tim has fostered effective networks and relationships with key industry stakeholders, understands the issues and opportunities we face, and will continue to provide a steady hand in executing on our vision and mission.”
In addition, Jason Miller, who has served NATA for seven years as CFO, was named chief operating officer and chief financial officer.
“We look forward to Tim's leadership as we enter a new decade of service and congratulate Gary on all his success while serving as NATA president,” Castagna continues. “The board is confident that Tim, along with the support of COO/CFO Jason Miller and the dedicated staff, will continue to advance safety and prosperity throughout our membership and the entire aviation business community.”
Obitts most recently served as NATA COO from November 2014, where he oversaw the day-to-day operation of the association. Previously he served as the managing partner of law firm Gammon & Grange.
Obitts helped form the Sustainable Aviation Fuel Industry Coalition and currently serves as chair of its steering committee. The Coalition continues to make great strides in promoting the education and awareness of the importance of these fuels and the industry's sustainability efforts. Under his guidance, NATA formed the Illegal Charter Task Force to address a serious threat to the industry, elevated the association's industry-leading Professional Line Service Training programme to the groundbreaking Safety 1st Training Center, raised the bar on fuel quality management and has gained ground in proposing sensible changes to NFPA 409 that help align the standard with the reality of our industry. Obitts has also been instrumental in fostering ethical conduct throughout the aviation business community, instituting best practices for continuous improvement in safety and customer service, and developing synergies among industry stakeholders and members to further our shared goals.