Southwest Airlines pilots elect new president

The membership of the Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association (SWAPA) has elected Captain Steve Chase to a two-year term as Union president.

Capt. Chase received 65% of the vote in the election to represent almost 6,000 pilots.

A North Texas native, Chase has been a pilot at Southwest Airlines since 1988 and is currently based out of Dallas Love Field.

"I am truly honoured to have the pilots’ trust in leading them for the next two years, and I would like to thank our current president Carl Kuwitzky for his work in laying a strong foundation for those that will now follow," commented Captain Chase. "With Southwest Airlines’ acquisition of AirTran, our pilots are facing a significant change in the company that will result in a monumental change in their careers. The next two years are pivotal for the Southwest pilots, and I am ready to work on their behalf."

Captain Chase is currently amid a two-year term as a SWAPA board member representing Dallas pilots. His previous service to SWAPA includes four years as a Dallas representative (2005-2008), and he also served on the Association’s Financial Oversight Committee in 2007.

In addition, First Officer Jason Pettit was elected to serve as 2nd vice-president for the same two-year term. Pettit is Dallas-based and will serve the pilot group full-time managing the Union budget, elections and other executive tasks.

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