ORLANDO, FL. – The Greater Orlando Aviation Authority mourns the passing of former Executive Director C.W. “Bill” Jennings. Mr. Jennings passed away Sunday at the age of 68 after a long illness.
Prior to his tenure as Executive Director, from April 2000 until 2006, Mr. Jennings held various positions throughout the Authority including Deputy Executive Director, Senior Director of Airports, Director of Operations and Director of Human Resources. Additionally he provided oversight of the Aviation Authority’s diversity programs, including the Minority and Women Business Enterprise Program and the Local Disadvantaged Business Programs which have received local and national recognition.
“The entire GOAA family joins Mr. Jennings’ family in mourning the loss of a giant in the aviation industry,” says Frank Kruppenbacher, Chairman of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority. “Mr. Jennings was a steady hand which helped guide our airport during the tragedy of 9-11, making us all more secure as a community and as an industry.”
“Not only does Orlando International Airport owe a great deal to Mr. Jennings’ leadership but so does the aviation industry,” says Phil Brown, Executive Director of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority.” Mr. Jennings’ visionary programs, to help developing nation’s aviation industries, will leave a lasting legacy.”
Mr. Jennings’ impact on the aviation industry was not only felt locally but he also pioneered a program to provide training and technical assistance to airport officials in developing nations including Ghana, Cote D’Ivoire, Senegal, Mali, Kenya, Eritrea, Morocco, Tunisia and others. Under the program aviation officials were invited to Orlando International for training in civil aviation issues, security, airfield and ramp safety and crisis management.
Mr. Jennings’ devotion to aviation was also highlighted in his membership on numerous professional associations including Airport Council International, The American Association of Airport Executives, the Florida Airport Council, The Tuskegee Airmen Incorporated and the Bessie Coleman Foundation.
In 2002, the Orlando Business Journal named Mr. Jennings one of “Orlando’s Ten Most Influential Business Leaders” and he was a member of various community boards across the state including the Florida A&M University Board of Trustees, The Florida Domestic Security Advisory Panel and the Florida Judicial Nominating Commission.
Mr. Jennings was a U.S. Army veteran where he served from 1969 until 1973 and then continued his service in the U.S. Army Reserves from 1978 until 1993.
Basic MCO Information:
Orlando International Airport (MCO), serves nearly 37 million annual passengers, of which 12.5 percent are international. MCO is the second busiest airport in Florida and has approximately 18,000 badged employees and generates $31 billion in direct and indirect revenue for the regional economy. In its ongoing efforts to value and delight its customers, Orlando International Airport has embarked on a series of Capital Improvements valued at over $1.3 billion and has approved designing a new South Terminal project all aimed at enhancing The Orlando Experience.®