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Air Canada just began similar routes leading to a competitive market that will lower fares and increase connectivity for small communities that have relied on trains for reasonably priced travel in the past.

WestJet today announced the appointment of Ferio Pugliese to the position of President, WestJet Encore, and Executive Vice-President, WestJet effective immediately.

“I am very pleased that Ferio will be leading WestJet Encore; he understands and exudes our strong culture,” said Gregg Saretsky, WestJet President and CEO. As has been the case with WestJet to date, the competitive advantage and success of WestJet Encore will be based on the engagement of WestJetters and a low-cost business model. Ferio’s involvement in WestJet Encore’s design and his significant contribution to our people leadership and culture make him the ideal choice for this role. With his leadership WestJet Encore will soar as we begin service in 2013.”

“For more than 16 years, WestJet has carefully laid the cultural and operational foundations that we will fully leverage as we launch WestJet Encore,” commented Ferio Pugliese. “To be given the opportunity to lead this team as we take WestJet’s remarkable guest experience to more Canadians is exciting and I look forward to earning and sharing successes with our fellow WestJetters.”

A certified human resources professional (CHRP) and 2007 recipient of Canada’s Top 40 under 40 award, Ferio holds a master of arts degree from Central Michigan University, a bachelor of arts degree in social science and a bachelor of commerce degree from the University of Windsor.

Ferio joined WestJet in June 2007 and has spearheaded many initiatives that have led to the airline’s numerous top employer accolades including Waterstone’s Most Admired Corporate Culture, Mediacorp’s Top 100 Employers and Aon Hewitt’s Best Employers in Canada.

Ferio will continue to have responsibility for WestJet’s People and Culture teams until a search for his successor is completed. In January 2012, WestJet announced it would launch a new regional airline in the second half of 2013 with orders for up to 45 Bombardier Q400 aircraft. The airline will announce its schedule in early 2013.

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Tags: air canada, westjet

Photo credit: A WestJet flight arrives in Toronto, Canada. Martin Cathrae /

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