Release #10.034
August 31, 2010

Jazz Air Captain to Receive ALPA’s Top Safety Award
Rockland, Ontario, Pilot Recognized as Leader in Aviation Safety

WASHINGTON —The Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l (ALPA), will recognize Jazz Air Capt. Ray Gélinas with its 2009 Air Safety Award for his longstanding participation and unwavering commitment to air transportation safety. The award, which is the Association’s highest safety honour, will be presented to Capt. Gélinas on August 31 at ALPA’s 56th Air Safety Forum Awards Dinner.

“Capt. Gélinas has been a tireless advocate and steadfast supporter of ALPA’s safety efforts, applying his talents and vast experience for more than 20 years to make air travel safer and more efficient,” said Capt. John Prater, ALPA’s president. “His developed expertise, good nature, and readiness to get involved at a moment’s notice have truly made him an ALPA asset, and his contributions continue to enhance safe airline operations throughout the North American skies and around the globe.”

A Jazz Air CRJ pilot based in Toronto, Capt. Gélinas regularly demonstrates his commitment through the many responsibilities he has taken on as an ALPA pilot safety representative. He is chairman of the ALPA Air Safety Committee’s Accident Analysis and Prevention Group, a member of ALPA’s Accident Investigation Board, a member of the ALPA Air Safety Steering and Oversight Committee, and an accident investigator for the Jazz ALPA Master Executive Council (MEC), as well as serving as an instructor for ALPA’s Safety Two School and Advanced Accident Investigation School.

The Rockland, Ontario, resident has also served as ALPA’s Air Safety communications coordinator, Central Air Safety chairman (CASC), and air safety communications coordinator for Air Canada Jazz (now Jazz Air), as well as CASC for Air Nova.

With a reputation for being a diligent, energetic team player, Capt. Gélinas’s experiences are not limited to ALPA activities. He is the regional vice president for the Canada/Arctic Region of the International Federation of Air Line Pilots’ Associations. He has worked with airline management and the Canadian and U.S. governments on various projects and initiatives, including time spent as a member of several Canadian Aviation Regulation Advisory Councils.

As an accident investigator, he was on the scene in Halifax, N.S., to assist with the investigation of the tragic Swissair Flight 111 accident of Sept. 2, 1998. During the investigation, he took on the very difficult task of sorting through parts of the cabin interior, including dangerous carbon fiber flooring, and discovered key evidence that helped the Transportation Safety Board of Canada determine the factors that led to the tragic event.

Capt. Gélinas also exhibited his leadership qualities during the 9/11 crisis when many transatlantic aircraft inbound to the United States were diverted to Halifax International Airport. Assisting the passengers and crews of those flights was a monumental undertaking, and he was on hand, putting in long hours to provide his knowledge and support.

Prater added, “Capt. Gélinas has made himself an invaluable resource and a mainstay of our safety team. We are fortunate to have him as a member.”

Founded in 1931, ALPA is the world’s largest pilot union, representing nearly 53,000 pilots at 38 airlines in the United States and Canada. Visit the ALPA website at


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