Airport Business

OCT 2018

The airport professional's source for airport industry news, articles, events, and careers.

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56 airportbusiness October 2018 David B. Decoteau, A.A.E., C.A.E., ACE David Decoteau’s love of aviation started as a child when his father took him to see air shows. “At 11 years old, my best friend’s father took me flying in a small plane. In high school I joined an aviation program that let you do ground school and get some hours flying,” he said. “I got my pilot’s license at 17, then went to the University of North Dakota’s commercial aviation program.” After graduating, Decoteau worked as a flight instructor, then did an internship in airport management at Boeing Field. “I stuck with it, and got an MBA from Western Governors University,” he said. Decoteau worked his way up to airport duty manager at Boeing Field, but moved to Hayward Executive Airport in August 2013 operations manager. “He always went the extra mile to provide a safer and more efficient operating environment,” said his nomination form. “For example, David was responsible for $2 million in grant funding to rehabilitate our main runway in 2016. It was a complex resurfacing project that, in response to input from tenants, was completed in just four days working around the clock.” He remembers this project. “When I started there, the runway markers were turning yellow because the rock quarry where they came from contained bad iron ore,” Decoteau recalled. “I determined that we needed to do a full overlay of the runway but we didn’t have the money, plus we had turbine operations that would have been disrupted,” said Decoteau. “Thanks to creative means in finding local, state and federal funding and doing it in a way that had limited impact to our tenants.” Decoteau, who’s been the airport manager at Livermore Municipal Airport since August 2017, enjoys working with a diverse group of people, including airport workers, the city, pilots, the police and fire departments and the airport’s customer. “No day is ever the same at the airport. There are always new challenges to tackle and goals to meet,” he said. As for the future of aviation, Decoteau feels what’s most important is nurturing his successors in the industry. “I was the last generation that was able to go to the airport and talk with pilots and see planes up close,” he said. “With current security measures, you can’t do that anymore, so it’s important to find opportunities for kids to experience aviation in their local communities so when we move on, they are there to take over.” Continued online at Steven C. Roque A.C. E., C.M. It was a big year for Steven Roque, who was the division manager for landside operations at George Bush Intercontinental Airport. In that job, he oversaw ground transportation, commercial vehicle permitting and landside operations, which includes all roadways, buildings and terminals. Roque spent the past year preparing Bush Intercontinental for Super Bowl LI, developing new concepts for commercial vehicle operations, VIP movements and passenger flow. And one of his last projects was to create a commercial vehicle hold lot, which integrated taxis, buses, TNCs, limousines and a cell phone waiting lot into one location. He has since been named assistant vice president of operations control at Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. “We work in a world where being 100 percent correct is considered average and anything less than 100 percent can get people hurt or killed, all while making national news. This was a quote one of my mentors once said that has always resonated with me,” said Roque. “No two days are ever the same. At any given moment, the decisions my team and I make can significantly impact the lives and experiences of thousands of people.” One of Roque’s favorite past times growing up was when his family traveled to Portugal, where they’re from. “The experience of traveling to the airport, the anticipation of waiting to board while looking out onto the tarmac, and then the excitement of takeoff and landing had me hooked,” he said. “Aviation was in my blood from a young age and to the surprise of my parents, it became my career objective.” When you think about what exactly aviation really is, you can’t help but be amazed by it all, said Roque. “We live in a world where we have the ability to transport people, animals and cargo of any kind anywhere in the world within a few hours, all while defying gravity in machines that have no business being in the sky,” he observed. “It’s a one-of-a-kind industry.” As for the future of aviation? Roque sees supersonic passenger jets. “One constant in passenger air travel is that aircraft continue to get bigger, so as to hold more and more passengers and cargo. However, the need to get them to their destination faster has been left on the back burner ever since the Concorde had its last flight in 2003,” he said. “From what I have read, several companies have projected that supersonic passenger flight would return within the next decade. My only hope is that it happens quickly.” Continued online at

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