Air service names new chief executive

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AIR traffic controller Nats has appointed a new boss.

The Whiteley-based service has given Martin Rolfe the job of chief executive.

Mr Rolfe joined Nats as managing director operations in 2012, and has led the company since May on an interim basis.

Mr Rolfe said: ‘Nats is such a capable organisation, it will be an honour to lead the company into the next phase of its development.

‘We are very clear in our company priorities.

‘My job is to help ensure our employees deliver the best results for customers.’

Mr Rolfe previously worked as managing director of Lockheed Martin UK civil aviation branch.

He has worked in the air traffic management field for 18 years, leading multinational teams across the world.

Nats chairman Dr Paul Golby said he was delighted with the appointment.

Dr Golby said: ‘Martin has proved himself an excellent candidate through both a robust selection and the way he has successfully steered the company during this interim period.

‘Air navigation service providers face a period of significant change in the years ahead, and Martin’s proven intention to work closely with employees, customers and stakeholders make him the right choice to lead the company.’

‘Our priority will remain bringing a safe and excellent service to our airline and airport customers in the UK on behalf of the travelling public and to capitalise on sound international opportunities as they arise. I look forward to continuing to work with Martin at this important time for Nats.’

n Air traffic controllers at Nats managed the first flight by an unmanned aircraft in controlled and unsegregated airspace in the UK.

The three-hour flight was controlled in the same way as a traditional manned aircraft, despite the fact that the pilots were sitting on the ground.