New General Manager Operations

Mike Clay web

27 January 2015

Senior aviation industry executive Mike Clay has joined the Queenstown Airport Corporation (QAC) team as the new General Manager of Operations this week.

Mike brings extensive strategic and operational experience in aviation, air services development, regulatory compliance, health and safety, environmental/aircraft noise management, and sustainable business practice to the role.  He was previously Auckland Airport’s Manager of Aeronautical Policy and has a strong background in infrastructure, manufacturing and construction-based industries.

Mike will have overall responsibility for managing the airport’s airside and terminal operations with an emphasis on aeronautical relationships and enhancing the consumer experience.  He will also focus on the strategic direction of the airport and its development.

QAC CEO Scott Paterson believes Mike will be a real asset to the Executive Team.

“Mike is well respected in the industry and his leadership and experience in aviation will be invaluable as we continue to expand and position the airport for future growth,” he says.

Mike holds a range of industry qualifications including Global Airport Management Professional Accreditation and graduate diplomas in Business Studies and Occupational Health and Safety.  He has completed the Airport Executive Leadership Program at Canada ‘s Concordia University and is currently a director of New Zealand’s Slot Coordination Board which manages the national allocation of airline slots, coordination of flight schedules, and collection of airline schedule data.

The challenge of leading a fast-growing airport’s operations, coupled with a change of scenery, were the main attractions for Mike to bring his family south.

“Queenstown Airport’s growth is phenomenal,” he says.  “There are some fantastic opportunities for me to get stuck into and it’s going to be a great challenge.”

A keen skier and mountain biker, Mike is also looking forward to swapping city life for the region’s stunning scenery and outdoor lifestyle.

“I was born and raised in Ohakune in the Central North Island so this is a perfect opportunity to balance work with the lifestyle that I love.  We also have extended family in Wanaka and Christchurch so it will be nice to catch up and socialise with them more often.”

Mike replaces Mark Harrington who moved overseas at the start of the year.