Airlines for America (A4A), the trade association for the leading U.S. airlines, today announced a pending membership change, as Delta Air Lines stated its intent to leave the association effective April 26, 2016.
A4A President and CEO Nicholas Calio said the move by Delta was not unexpected as the carrier has not been aligned with other A4A members on a few key industry positions, including the need to modernize and improve the nation’s air traffic control system.
“As an association we work collaboratively in the best interests of our members and the customers and communities they serve, and are most effective advocating for the traveling and shipping public when we speak with a unified industry voice,” Calio said.
Calio said the pending change will not distract A4A and its members from the continuing work of fighting higher taxes and unnecessary regulations while pushing for updated infrastructure along with the vast array of technical and regulatory issues that A4A’s councils and committees regularly address.
“We have been and will continue to be more effective as an industry advocating for our customers and employees with a unified voice in Washington, and we are committed to working with A4A to achieve reform at the highest levels, including air traffic control,” said Doug Parker, Chairman and CEO of American Airlines and Chairman of the A4A Board of Directors.
Added Calio: “With FAA reauthorization, we have an opportunity to address delays that cost $30 billion annually and implement transformational change to the air traffic control system that would mean greater efficiency and a better travel experience. We remain focused on that work to modernize our system and make flying better for the two million people who rely on it every day.”
Calio also thanked Delta CEO Richard Anderson for his work as Chairman of the A4A Board. Anderson most recently served as Chairman for the first two years of Calio’s tenure at A4A.
“Under Richard’s chairmanship, we were able to change the way A4A operates, moving it to a consensus-driven organization that has the ability to speak with one voice,” Calio said. “We thank Richard and all of the many Delta employees who serve on A4A councils and committees who actively work to address issues that affect the entire industry and our customers.”