Bill Whyte

Bill Whyte, Vice President, Aviation Operations and Technical Services, Regional Airline Association

Prior to taking up his position at the RAA in June, 2019, Bill was the General Manager of Flight Operations Training at Compass Airlines. Compass Airlines was formed in 2006 and Bill was one of the team that formed the airline and was instrumental in setting up the Flight Training department to introduce the Embraer 175 into service for North West Airlines. Prior to that he was the Manager of Flight Training for Independence Air, responsible for all Canadair Regional Jet and Airbus A319 ground and flight training. And, from 1999, in turn, he was an instructor and Manager of Ground Training for Atlantic Coast Airlines, responsible for implementing the ground training program for the Jetstream 32, Jetstream 41, Dornier 328 Jet and Canadair Regional Jet. A career military pilot with the British Royal Air Force (RAF), he graduated from the RAF Central Flying School as a qualified flight instructor in 1968 and in addition to front line squadron and staff assignments was associated with training and checking pilots on jet aircraft until his retirement from the service in 1997.

At RAA, Whyte provides subject matter expertise on aviation operations, aviation safety standards and safe operating practices. He serves on industry operations and technical task forces and working groups, including agency rulemaking and regulatory negotiating committees. He also acts as the liaison between RAA and the FAA’s Air Traffic Organization, NextGen program and related organizations.

Industry Welcome and Update from the Regional Airline Association

Much has been presented and discussed over the years regarding the shortage of pilots available to the airlines and of course the worrying trend of a reduction in pilots choosing to follow a pilot career. This presentation will cover some of the initiatives that the RAA is involved in to encourage prospective pilots into a career in the industry. Perhaps of more concern is the reduction in the maintenance workforce and like pilots, a reduction in candidates undergoing maintenance training courses. Again, this presentation will cover some of the initiatives that are being specifically sponsored and supported by the regional airlines and some unique ways that the industry is enhancing technician training.

Much of the work of the RAA is of course to support our airlines who face many unique challenges that do not apply to our codeshare partners. RAA accomplishes this by acting as a link to those who enact the laws in Congress and in turn, the DOT and the FAA who produce the regulations by which we conduct our business. This work is done by providing representation at congressional committee hearings, through participation in rule making and advisory committees andn other working groups that provide input to the FAA when tasked to do so. Much of the work now is a direct result of the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018 which contained more than 1,900 sections, of which some 85 were relevant to aviation operations and out of which, RAA is directly involved in 17. This presentation will provide an overview of the work that is being undertaken which ranges from Secondary Barriers for aircraft cabins to the ability of regional aircraft to operate in the NextGen airspace.