North America

Virgin America appoints new VP Flight Operations

Virgin America today announced the appointment of Brad Thomann as Vice President – Flight Operations effective immediately.

Thomann, who has over 30 years of experience in civil and military aviation, will oversee the California-based airline’s technical and administrative Flight Operations functions including Flight Training, Flight Operations Engineering, Flight Standards, Flight Crew Communications, Flight Crew Resources and the Chief Pilot’s Office. Thomann brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the role, having held a number of senior leadership positions in the industry at Virgin Australia, Boeing and United Airlines along with 26 years of service in the U.S. Navy.

“With an aviation career spanning over three decades, Brad brings an impressive depth of experience to this important new role,” said Steve Forte, Virgin America Chief Operating Officer. “The delivery of new aircraft between 2015 and 2016 will grow our fleet by nearly 20% and this new position will be invaluable as we enter this exciting next phase in our history. Brad will be a great asset to the Virgin America team.”

Before joining Virgin America, Thomann held the role of Chief Pilot and General Manager – Flight Operations for Virgin Australia, where he was responsible for two operating certificates, 1,200 employees and a fleet of over 100 Boeing, Embraer and Airbus jets.

Prior to his time at Virgin Australia, Thomann was the Chief Operating Officer for Jeppesen, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Boeing Company, where he was responsible for HR, finance, software development, IT, facilities, legal, global navigation services, international trip planning, training, standards and quality. Thomann originally joined Boeing as Executive Vice President/COO for Alteon, Boeing’s worldwide pilot, mechanic and flight attendant training organization where he managed 70+ simulators and 22 training centers across 5 continents.

Thomann spent 19 years at United Airlines, during which time he held a range of roles including Line Pilot, Flight Instructor, Managing Director of Flight Standards and Training, and Base Chief Pilot at ORD, where he led 2,700 pilots and oversaw 420 daily domestic and international departures.

A graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, Thomann was a naval aviator on active duty for eight years and in the Naval Reserves for 18 years. Thomann is type rated on Boeing B737, B747, B747-400, B757 and B767 aircraft.

Thomann will be based at Virgin America’s Burlingame, California headquarters.

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