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Rob Sherrard Steps Down From Virgin Blue

10/03/2005

Brett Godfrey, Chief Executive Officer of Virgin Blue today announced the departure from Virgin Blue of Rob Sherrard, Deputy Chief Executive and Chief Operating Officer.


Mr Sherrard was a co-founder of Virgin Blue and oversaw the airline's operations from its inaugural flight on 31 August 2000 to present day, including engineering, safety, and flying operations for the airline's fleet of 50 Boeing 737s, and associated teams of 600 pilots and 1500 flight attendants.


Mr Godfrey said “Rob was a co-founder of Virgin Blue and an integral member of the team which built a new domestic airline for Australia. He has been a strong leader to all who worked with him and a mentor to many. ”


“On a personal note I would like to acknowledge Rob’s vision and unswerving support from day one of our concept to shaping the airline to what it is today, often in intensely challenging circumstances. He has simply made an outstanding contribution.”


“We know that he will make a success of anything he chooses to do, and we wish him well with his pursuits."


In recent months Mr Sherrard has managed the transition of Virgin Blue's operations to Mr Andrew David, whose appointment as Virgin Blue’s new Chief Operating Officer was announced in October, 2004.


Mr Sherrard described his decision to retire from Virgin Blue as ‘long considered and purely personal’ to enable complete focus on other plans and private projects with his family.


“I am confident that I am leaving Virgin Blue’s operations in the capable hands of Andrew David as the airline embarks on its next stage of development,” he said.


Mr David, aged 43, was previously General Manager Pacific Airline for Air New Zealand responsible for the New Zealand flag carrier’s Airbus A320 and Boeing 737 operations covering the New Zealand domestic market, trans-Tasman and Pacific Islands routes. He was also previously Air New Zealand’s VP Group Strategy and Planning, Chief Information Officer and Operations Business Performance Manager.