IATA will during this year's AGM in Seoul reveal the winners of its first diversity and inclusion awards, recognising the efforts being made industry-wide to broaden the mix of the global aviation workforce.
The awards, sponsored by Qatar Airways, will recognise three categories of leadership in diversity and inclusion. These comprise two for women - Inspirational Role Model and Young High Flyer – and a team award for an airline that has seen a tangible change in diversity through diversity and inclusion initiatives.
“The IATA Diversity and Inclusion Awards will help the industry learn from the progress that is being made,” says director general Alexandre de Juniac. “There is still a long way to go to achieve the balance we need. And I am sure that we will all be inspired by the achievements of the awardees.”
Akbar Al Baker, who is group chief executive of Qatar Airways and current chair of the IATA board of governors, says the airline is very pleased to be sponsoring the new awards.
“We know that diversity and inclusion are strengths in helping us serve the needs of our customers and we sponsored these awards to help us and the industry as a whole identify those who are leading in this field so that we might learn from their success.”
IATA received 68 submissions and has four shortlisted nominees in each category. These include:
Inspirational role model - Mireille Goyer (founder of Institute for Women of Aviation Worldwide), Christine Ourmieres-Widener (FlyBe), Emily Heath (United Airlines) and Nur Gokman (Hitit Computer Services).
High Flyer - Melissa Kose (British Airways), Fadimatou Noutchemo Simo (Young African Aviation Professional), Katherine Guerrero (Chan & Grant) and Noopurr R Chablani (Bird Group).
Diversity and inclusion team - Air Baltic, Iceland Air, Air New Zealand and Qantas.
The awards were judged by four-person panel comprising Airports Council International director general Angela Gittens, World Travel and Tourism Council chief executive Gloria Guevara, FlightGlobal vice president publishing and conferences Mark Pilling and Karen Walker, who is editor-in-chief of Air Transport World. This year’s winners will be presented with their awards on 3 June at the AGM.