Published in Economic Development
L to R: Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority Board Chair Dan Koorndyk, incoming CEO Torrance Richardson, Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority Vice Chair Floyd Wilson. L to R: Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority Board Chair Dan Koorndyk, incoming CEO Torrance Richardson, Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority Vice Chair Floyd Wilson. COURTESY PHOTO

Ford Airport names new president & CEO

BY Friday, August 23, 2019 11:19am

GRAND RAPIDS — The Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority Board has selected Torrance Richardson as the new president and CEO of the airport, the board announced Friday.

Richardson most recently served as executive vice president and chief operating officer of the Columbus Regional Airport Authority, which oversees three airports in central Ohio. During his tenure there, passenger traffic grew by 33 percent to more than 8.4 million passengers, and freight increased by 91 percent to more than 300 million pounds. 

“He brings a tremendous depth and breadth of aviation leadership and management form his tenure at airports throughout the Midwest to our team in Grand Rapids,” Dan Koorndyk, Grand Rapids airport board chairman, said in a statement.

Richardson will plan, organize and direct all functions and activities of the airport system. Working with a team of about 110 employees, Richardson will develop and implement a strategic vision for the airport, including long-term plans for future development, infrastructure and passenger growth. 

“I’m honored to join the professional team at Ford Airport,” Richardson said in a statement. “Together we’ll focus on creating even stronger partnerships between the airport and the community so we fully leverage economic and development opportunities during this exciting time of growth.”

Before working in Columbus, Richardson spent eight years as executive director of airports for the Fort Wayne-Allen County Airport Authority in Indiana. He worked in the same position for the Rapid City Regional Airport in South Dakota, along with other positions in aviation at the Dubuque Regional Airport in Iowa.

He is an Accredited Airport Executive and chairperson of the American Association of Airport Executives.

“We evaluated a number of exceptionally strong candidates from around the country for this position,” Koorndyk said. “The airport authority board particularly valued Tory’s passion for aviation, his demonstrated expertise in business development and financial management, and his strong focus on both customer service and talent development.”

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