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Sean Durfy resigns as president and CEO of WestJet

March 16, 2010, Calgary - Sean Durfy, president and CEO of WestJet Airlines Ltd. says he will resign his position on April 1 for "personal reasons.''


March 16, 2010
By The Canadian Press

Durfy will be replaced by Gregg Saretsky, who joined WestJet in June 2009 as vice-president of WestJet Vacations before becoming vice-president of operations in October. He has also held positions with the now-defunct Canadian Airlines and Alaska Airlines.

Durfy said he will stay on until Sept. 1 to help with the transition.

"This was a very difficult decision for me. However, after careful consideration, I have decided that this is best for me and my family,'' Durfy said in a statement.

"Those things I set out to accomplish at WestJet have now been achieved and I believe this is an appropriate time to allow others to carry the torch while I spend more time with my young family.''

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Durfy joined WestJet in 2004 as an executive vice-president, became president in 2006 and added the role of CEO in 2007. The Calgary-based airline praised Durfy for spearheading several strategic growth initiatives, including the launch of its vacation
package business as well as the implementation of two new reservation systems, airline partnerships and reward programs.

Saretsky is well positioned to enhance his predecessor's accomplishments, WestJet chairman Clive Beddoe said.

At Alaska Airlines, Saretsky developed a network of partners among the U.S. airlines and an award-winning rewards program. He was also "instrumental in the establishment of many cost-saving initiatives, making Alaska one of the most efficient airlines in North America,'' WestJet said.

"He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the president and CEO role and we are confident his background will provide the leadership and experience required to achieve our strategic plans,'' Beddoe stated.