WestJet chief operating officer Diederik Pen will take on the additional role of president on 1 April.

Pen, who joined the Calgary-based airline in October 2021, will remain COO and continue to report to chief executive Alexis von Hoensbroech after becoming president, the company said on 19 March.


Source: WestJet

Diederik Pen, WestJet chief operating officer, is named to president post

“Diederik’s experience as a respected leader, with a track record of operational success, will be critical as we continue our growth strategy, including the integration of Sunwing Airlines,” von Hoensbroech says. “With the largest narrowbody aircraft order book in Canada, it is critical we optimise safe and reliable performance for our business, as we deliver more affordable options and better connectivity to Canadians.”

WestJet announced it was acquiring Sunwing in March 2022, completed the acquisition in May 2023, and has said it plans to complete the integration of the discount carrier’s fleet by October 2024.

In the three years since joining Canada’s second-largest carrier, Pen worked on enhancing operational performance and helped oversee in-flight services, airport issues, technical operations, labour relations, safety, crew resources and training.

“As WestJet Group chief operating officer and president of WestJet Airlines, Pen will be responsible for the group’s day-to-day operations, successful labour negotiations and overall operational reliability,” the airline says.

Before joining WestJet, Pen spent 25 years working for multiple airlines Europe and the Asia-Pacific region, WestJet adds.