JetBlue Airways said it has appointed Steve Forte as the carrier’s new Vice President, JetBlue University. Forte joins JetBlue this week to oversee the company’s award-winning training programs and facilities.
He will be based in Orlando, Fla. and report to Rachel McCarthy, JetBlue’s Senior Vice President, Talent & Learning.
From locations in Orlando, New York and Salt Lake City, JetBlue University offers new hire and recurrent training for JetBlue’s airports, customer support (reservations), flight operations, inflight, system operations, and technical operations crewmembers, as well as pilot training services for a variety of other airlines around the world.
Forte most recently served as Chief Operating Officer and Director of Operations for Virgin America, responsible for day-to-day operations across the carrier’s growing network including airports, flight operations, technical operations, guest services, operations control center, regulatory affairs, and safety.
Prior to Virgin America, Forte served as General Manager of GE PBN Services, a division of GE Aviation, and as President, CEO and COO of its predecessor, Naverus Corporation, a pioneer in performance-based navigation technologies for air traffic management.
A veteran of the commercial airline industry, Steve Forte began his career at United Airlines where he served nearly three decades beginning as a line pilot and culminating in the role of Senior Vice President of Flight Operations and Director of Operations.
He is a graduate of the University of Arizona, where he earned both his undergraduate and MBA degrees.
“We are excited to welcome Steve to JetBlue and to the team at JetBlue University,” said McCarthy. “His extensive experience in aviation operations and training makes him a terrific addition to our leadership team at JetBlue.”
Forte added: “I am thrilled to be joining the team at JetBlue. I look forward to working with my colleagues at JetBlue University to ensure we are doing everything we can to set up our new hires and operations teams for success. JBU is recognized throughout our industry for innovation and excellence in training and I am excited to support them in keeping that tradition alive as the airline continues to expand and evolve.”