Extra-Mile-Spring 2018


The latest edition of Meridian's newsletter - The Extra Mile, Spring 2018.

thextramile >>>

Dear Customers, Meridian Family, and Friends,

spring/summer 2018

i n this iss u e

>>> Letter from

the CEO 1

>>> Poised for

Growth 1

>>> Meridian

Events 3

>>> Meridian Hayward

Photo Spread 6

>>> Meridian

Celebrates 8

>>> Plane Folk 10

>>> Meridian

Milestones 10

>>> Giving Back 11

>>> Mile Markers 12

We are pleased to present our spring newsletter, which is full of good news about Meridian. The articles

highlight some of our people, accomplishments, work in progress, and the ways that we give back to our

communities. We support other communities that need our thoughts and prayers during these difficult


We are especially proud of our Meridian Culture Initiative (MCI). Our senior management team

has been meeting weekly for almost two years in order to develop a culture of open communication and

personal accountability. That is as relevant to those of us who have been at Meridian for many years as it is

to our new hires. Our goal is to make Meridian the best place to work in our industry. To that end, we want

to ensure that each employee feels valued, recognized, and is given opportunities to grow. We’ve developed

surveys, run focus groups, held Meridian Academies, recognized outstanding performance, and acted on

employee comments and suggestions. This culminated in our first Town Hall Meeting, which was held on

January 18, 2018. We are committed to this program because we know that employees

who feel valued and respected will give each customer exceptional service, and do it with

a smile. I thank everyone who has committed so much time and effort to this project.

My door is always open. Please let me know your ideas and comments. It is only through

your input and involvement that Meridian will continue to be an industry leader.

Poised for Growth

in 2018

Teterboro Update

Meridian is nearing completion of the new

Hangar 12, replacing the old one that was

demolished last year. The new state-of-the-art

facility includes a 40,000 sq. ft. hangar and a

two-story support building, effectively doubling

the size of the previous facility.

The 7,800 sq. ft. support office space

has been completed and the furnishings are set to

be installed soon. The first floor includes tenant

office space, as well as a comfortable customer

reception area. The second floor is primarily

reserved for the managed aircraft maintenance

team. As our newsletter was going to press, the

fire suppression system was being installed in the

hangar. The system includes water protection and

a high expansion foam system. The new hangar is

expected to be operational in early May.

Hayward Update

There’s been a lot of activity at our West Coast

facility as Meridian Hayward continues to grow. Our

Customer Service Representatives (CSRs) have all

completed the necessary requirements and are

officially NATA Safety 1st Certified. To receive the

NATA Safety 1st Certification, our CSRs completed

courses on: introduction to general

continued on page 2

Poised for Growth in 2018 continued from page 1

aviation, ground service, customer service,

ramp safety and aviation security practices. NATA

Safety 1st, offered by the National Aviation Transportation

Association, is generally recognized as

the leading resource for general aviation safety

and operational best practices.

In another example of our commitment to

excellence, we are pleased to share that Meridian

Hayward has been named as NetJets’ preferred FBO

at Hayward Executive Airport. In addition to operational

growth, our charter and sales activities on

the West Coast continue to expand as well.

In March, the Northern California (NORCAL)

Army National Guard helicopter battalion conducted

their annual training exercises at Hayward Executive

Airport, and Meridian served as its base of operations.

Some upcoming events include our first

annual airport barbeque for airport tenants later

this spring. Meridian Hayward will host the Southern

and Northern California Schedulers & Dispatchers

(SONO) biannual dinner meeting on May 10.

Managed Fleet Update

In the last few months, we have added four Gulfstream

aircraft to our managed fleet. A G550, two

G450s and a GV have joined the fleet and are all

available for charter. Meridian’s managed fleet

ranges from large cabin Gulfstream, Falcon, Global

and Challenger aircraft, to a variety of midsize and

super midsize models, most of which are available

for charter.

Meridian is pleased to offer our charter

customers a variety of well-appointed aircraft

models to meet their individual travel needs. Other

aircraft types are available through Meridian’s

extensive network of qualified operators.

Inaugural Town Hall

Meridian held its first Town Hall Meeting on Thursday,

January 18, which was extremely well-attended by

employees from virtually every department. The

purpose of the meeting was to further enhance

communication between our management team and

Meridian employees. The meeting gave employees

the opportunity to hear the latest information about

the company, ask questions and provide feedback.

The management team also provided feedback

from our first company-wide employee survey, and

discussed many of the improvements that were

implemented as a result.

A post-meeting survey was sent to those

that attended asking for comments on the meeting

and the content. “The employee comments we

received were overwhelmingly positive,” said Ken

Forester, Meridian’s CEO. ”We are looking forward

to additional meetings in the future. This enhanced

communication will only help us become an even

stronger company!”





A. An aerial view of the

new Hangar 12 (second from

bottom) nearing completion.

The new 40,000 sq. ft.

hangar will be double the

size of the former structure

located on the site. The new

facility is expected to be fully

operational by May.

B/C. An exterior and cabin

view of Meridian Air Charter’s

latest fleet addition - a

beautiful Gulfstream G450,

which seats 14 passengers

and is based in Teterboro, NJ

(KTEB). The aircraft is now

available for charter.

D. Emil Iannone, Director

of Operations, kicks-off

Meridian’s inaugural Town

Hall Meeting with other

members of our management

team. The results of a recent

company survey were

discussed, and employees

were able to ask questions

and provide feedback they

might have about the



Top Left - The Meridian team photo was taken at our booth during the NBAA

Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE 2017), the largest

business aviation event in the world. Last year’s show was located in Las

Vegas, NV, and fourteen associates attended from all departments.

Meridian Events

Top Right - Meridian was well-represented at the final NBAA Regional Forum

of 2017, which, for the first time ever, was held at Morristown Airport (MMU)

in Northern New Jersey. The event was well-attended and was a great

opportunity for our team to both network with existing customers and

meet with new ones.

Bottom Right - Bob Platten, Maria Bochman, Chris Battaglia, and Kirk Stephen

working the booth at the first NBAA Regional Forum of 2018 in West Palm

Beach, FL. This year’s event set records for both attendees and exhibitors.

2017 Trade Shows

Meridian participated in several major events in the last few months

of 2017, starting with the year’s final National Business Aviation

Association (NBAA) Regional Forum on September 7. The well-attended

Northeast Regional was held for the first time at Morristown Airport

(MMU), and drew 160 exhibitors, more than 2,500 attendees and

featured 37 aircraft and vehicles on static display.

“We were pleasantly surprised to see the number of exhibitors

and attendees at the show,” said Kirk Stephen, Director of Marketing.

“The Regionals are very important to Meridian because it gives our

people the opportunity to connect with many of our customers in a

local setting that the bigger shows can’t always provide. I know that

our Charter, FBO, Management and Maintenance teams were able to

network with many of our longtime customers, while also meeting

several new prospects. The value of these shows is immeasurable

because of the face-to-face contact they provide.”

Meridian next headed to the 2017 Business Aviation Convention &

Exhibition (NBAA-BACE) in Las Vegas, NV, the largest business aviation

event of the year and the country’s sixth-largest trade show. Meridian

was well-represented at the event, which took place October 10-12, with

a team of fourteen associates from all departments from both Teterboro

and Hayward, including Customer Service, Charter Sales & Operations,

Aircraft Management, Aircraft Maintenance and Marketing.

This year’s convention coincided with the one-year anniversary

of the opening of our new West Coast FBO, Meridian Hayward, and

we were quite busy welcoming customers, prospects, visitors and colleagues

at our 400 sq. ft. exhibit booth. On the second day of the show,

a well-attended raffle was held, which featured the grand prize of a

briefcase filled with a “mystery” amount of cash. Two additional winners

walked away with high-value Amazon gift cards, and many lucky

spectators received Meridian t-shirts at the end of the raffle.

CEO Ken Forester commented on the show saying, “We were

extremely pleased to be at this year’s NBAA Convention during the first

anniversary of the opening of Meridian Hayward. We have come a long

way since opening our doors last year, and we are still welcoming new

customers to our FBO every day. NBAA is a great opportunity for us to

share the message with our industry colleagues that we

are now firmly established on the West Coast and receiving

aircraft for both transient and charter customers.”

All three days of the show were packed with

well-attended education sessions, including half-day

programs at the NBAA National Safety Forum and

Single-Pilot Safety Standdown. Discussions featured

top safety experts and representatives from the Federal

Aviation Administration (FAA) and National Transportation

Safety Board (NTSB). A charity auction event, held

by NBAA and the Corporate Angel Network (CAN), raised

$435,000 for CAN’s mission to transport cancer patients

to treatment centers.

continued on page 4


Meridian Events continued from page 3


Attendees represented all 50 U.S. states and dozens of

countries. NBAA-BACE 2017 also hosted 1,100 exhibitors (including

more than 100 new exhibitors) and a static display inside the Las Vegas

Convention Center, and some 100 aircraft at the outdoor static display

at Henderson Executive Airport.

This year’s convention will be held at the Orange County

Convention Center October 16-18, 2018, in Orlando, FL. Meridian will

definitely be there and we look forward to seeing you!

Golfing for a Cause

Meridian also participated in two golf outings—both for good causes. On

Wednesday, September 20, Meridian Jet Center was proud to support

the 29th Annual Ed Furst Sr. Memorial Scholarship Golf Outing, which

was held at the beautiful Crystal Springs Golf Club in Hamburg, NJ.

Meridian sponsored a hole, as well as sending a foursome of golfers

to represent the company. The event drew 112 golfers, and included a

4-person scramble, lunch, dinner and an awards reception following the


The golf outing traditionally follows the first Teterboro

Professional Aviation Maintenance Association (PAMA) meeting of the

season, which was held the previous evening at the Graycliff Restaurant

in Moonachie, NJ. The Meridian team included John Langschultz, Vice

President of Maintenance, Bob Kennedy, Jet Center Sales, Kirk Stephen,

Director of Marketing, and Gino DiMartino, Account Manager with

Aerotek Aviation. While the foursome did not win the tournament, they

did take home the award for “Most Honest Team”, finishing the round

with a “respectable” score of 80 (8 over par). The winning team

was Dassault Falcon Jet (Wilmington, DE), with a final score of

57 (15 under par).

Meridian has been an event sponsor since the very beginning,

over 28 years ago, and John Langschultz has served on the golf

committee for the entire 28 years. The PAMA golf outing was renamed

after Ed Furst, Sr. passed away suddenly in 2001. Today, his son, Ed

Furst, Jr. organizes the event each year. This year, Meridian employee

Connor Furst, grandson of Ed Furst, Sr., played among the group and

finished second in the longest drive contest with a 296 yard drive.

Pretty impressive for a 16 year old!

The annual golf outing is hosted by the Teterboro Chapter of

PAMA, and provides educational opportunities to students attending

the Teterboro School of Aeronautics in conjunction with FlightSafety.

“This PAMA chapter has had a long-standing relationship with the

school,” said President Ed Furst, Jr. “Every student benefits from the

latest donation by PAMA and FlightSafety. The chapter is leasing Flight-

Safety’s popular Principles of Troubleshooting training program for the

school for a three-year period. Each year we would donate scholarship

funds to one or two students – but our board members were looking for

something that would benefit the whole student body.”

Top Left - Meridian attends the NBAA Schedulers & Dispatchers Conference

(SDC2018) in Long Beach, CA, with a team of associates. (l to r): MaKayla Gorski,

Kirk Stephen, Chris Battaglia, Mike Moore, Bob Platten, Amber Salvatore, and

Phil Boyer.

Top Right - Meridian proudly supports the Teterboro Airport Scholarship Fund at

its annual golf classic, held last year at the Basking Ridge Country Club in NJ.

(l to r): Ron Palmer, Bob Platten, and Nehemias Camacho.

The scholarship was originally established by

Teterboro PAMA and Morristown-based FL Aviation in

memory of Tom Geiger, former Director of Maintenance

at FL Aviation. The golf outing helps to raise the funds

needed to keep the scholarship program going.

“We are proud to participate in this event because

it positively impacts all of the students. Since these young

men and women are the future of our industry, we all

benefit in the long run. It’s really a great cause,” said

John Langschultz.

Meridian also proudly participated in the 33rd

Annual Teterboro Airport Scholarship Golf Classic, which

was held at Basking Ridge Country Club in Basking Ridge,

NJ. The golf tournament raises funds for the Teterboro

Airport Community Benefit Fund, which creates scholarships

totaling about $12,000 for local high schools.

Due to the overwhelming success and generosity

of businesses both on and off the airport, the Teterboro

Airport Scholarship Golf Classic has permitted the

Teterboro Airport community to award 200 scholarships

to local high school graduates aspiring to pursue higher

education in aviation or related fields of study.

Meridian sponsored a hole at the event and sent

a team of three to play in the tournament, including Ron

Palmer, Weekend Supervisor, Bob Platten, Aviation Sales

Executive, and Nehemias Camacho, Line Service Manager.

The team managed to place 4th overall in the tournament

and shot an impressive score of 67. While they did not

come home with any hardware, the team still enjoyed a

fun round of golf while supporting a great cause. Special

thanks to our team and to everyone who made the event


Honoring Hall of Famers

On November 1, 2017, the Aviation Hall of Fame & Museum

of New Jersey (NJAHOF) held its 44th Annual Hall of

Fame Induction Dinner at the Fiesta Ballroom in

active and engaged. We’re entering a new year, and we’re

excited about the opportunities it brings.” Bolen also

discussed other initiatives NBAA would focus on in 2018


Top Left - Meridian Jet Center sent a foursome to participate in the annual PAMA

golf outing at Crystal Springs Golf Club in Hamburg, NJ. (l to r): Bob Kennedy, Gino

DiMartino (Aerotek Aviation), John Langschultz, and Kirk Stephen. This was Meridian’s

28th consecutive year sponsoring the event.

Top Right - Meridian shows its support for the New Jersey Aviation Hall of Fame &

Museum at the 44th Annual Induction Dinner. The ceremony was held on November

1, 2017 at the Fiesta Ballroom in Wood-Ridge, NJ.

Wood-Ridge, NJ. This tribute dinner honors local aviation pioneers and

financially supports the Hall of Fame and Museum, located on Fred

Wehran Drive in Teterboro, NJ. It is one of the museum’s biggest fund

raising events of the year.

Founded in 1972, the NJAHOF is dedicated to the preservation

of the Garden State’s distinguished two-century aviation and space

heritage. Men and women whose outstanding aeronautical achievements

have brought worldwide recognition to the state are enshrined in the

Hall of Fame. Meridian is a proud supporter of the museum, and representatives

of the company enjoy attending the induction dinner every

year, including our CEO Ken Forester. Ken’s father, Ken Forester, Sr., who

founded Meridian with Bob Hewitt back in 1946, was himself inducted

into the Hall of Fame in 2008.

This year’s event recognized four individuals who are connected

to New Jersey and who have each uniquely contributed to the

advancement of human flight. The 2017 NJ Hall of Fame Inductees are

General Michael L. Cunniff, Thomas S. Marotta, David J. Morris, and

Captain Lynn O’Donnell. A detailed background about each inductee

can be found on our website and also at www.njahof.org.

Meridian was proud to be a part of this year’s Induction

Ceremonies and congratulates the inductees and their families.

2018 Trade Shows

Meridian started off 2018 at the year’s first NBAA Regional Forum at

Palm Beach International Airport (PBI) on Wednesday, January 24.

The company sent representatives from Charter Sales and Marketing

to meet and greet visitors at its booth, and the team was happy to see

many familiar faces, while also meeting new people in the industry,

many who were exhibiting or attending for the first time.

This year’s event was hailed as the best forum NBAA has held

in Palm Beach, with new records set for both attendees and exhibitors.

The event drew over 2,700 attendees and over 150 exhibitors. In

addition, 30 aircraft and ground support vehicles were on static display

creating an exciting environment for both attendees and exhibitors.

The event also focused on what the professional aviation

industry can expect going forward in 2018. NBAA President and CEO

Ed Bolen reiterated that, “We’re going to pick up 2018 where we left

off last year, and that is by asking everybody in our community to be






ATC Privatization

Workforce Development

Ethical Business Practices

Airport Access

International Advocacy

The forum was very successful for the Meridian

team and provided us an invaluable opportunity to meet

current customers and connect with new ones, as well as

network with industry peers. The next Regional Forums

are June 21 in White Plains, NY, and September 6 in San

Jose, CA. Meridian will be participating in both forums

and we look forward to seeing you there.

In February, Meridian exhibited at the 2018 NBAA

Schedulers & Dispatchers Conference (SDC2018). This

year’s conference was held in Long Beach, CA, from

February 6 through February 9, and again demonstrated

its continuing value as the premier educational and

networking event for professionals involved in business

aviation logistics.

The show featured more than 550 exhibitors on

a sold-out floor and more than 2,900 attendees, including

150 first-timers. Both numbers set new records for SDC.

The program included dozens of innovative education sessions,

various networking events and ample opportunities

to give back to the local community.

SDC2018 included many new features, most

notably an increased focus on educational opportunities.

With more than 30 education sessions offered, SDC2018

had something for everyone--from the basics of scheduling

to operating internationally to starting your own


SDC2018 also put emphasis on charitable contributions.

This year alone, three charities received support

through the Pay It Forward Campaign, including Dress for

Success, Pacific Gateway and Clothes the Deal. All these

organizations help less fortunate men and women in the

Long Beach Community. Dozens of monetary training

scholarships were also awarded at this year’s show.

To raise brand awareness and increase booth

traffic, Meridian held a raffle with a grand prize of an

Apple iPhone X. The raffle was a huge success as it drew

a very large crowd of business aviation professionals to

our location. Other prizes included Amazon gift cards.

The entire raffle was captured on Facebook Live. A special

thanks to everyone who took the time to stop by our


Next year’s Schedulers & Dispatchers Conference,

which will mark the event’s 30th anniversary, is set for

January 29 – February 1, 2019, in San Antonio, TX. We look

forward to seeing you there!






Meridian Celebrates


30 Years of Service

Congratulations to Steve Chandoha, President of

Meridian Teterboro, who celebrated his 30 year

anniversary with Meridian on January 4.

Steve joined Meridian as Flight School

Manager in 1988, after earning his Master of Business

Administration/Master of Aeronautical Science

from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University. He also

received his Bachelor’s degree from Embry-Riddle.

As corporate aviation at Teterboro intensified,

Steve moved to the FBO side of the business and

served as Line Service Manager. He moved up to

General Manager, then Vice President and became

President of Meridian Teterboro in 2002.

Steve got the aviation bug early—around

age 15. He loved flying and got his glider license and

then his pilot license and various ratings while at

The Meridian Hayward (above) and Meridian Teterboro (below) Line Service teams proudly display

their Gulfstream Service Training awards. All members of both teams successfully completed the

ground handling and servicing training earlier this year.


Steve Chandoha, President of Meridian Teterboro, celebrates

his 30th Anniversary at the company with some cake!

Embry-Riddle. As his career progressed, his focus

turned more to the business side. While no longer

actively flying, Steve obviously loves aviation, and

loves working at Meridian.

“Every day is different,” says Steve. “You

start your day planning certain activities, then

something comes up or something happens and

the day totally changes.”

While each day is different, the one thing

that always stays the same is the supportive attitude

of Ken Forester, Owner and CEO. Steve says

that Ken’s support and encouragement fosters a

culture that contributes to the longevity of so many

employees. “There is an amazing group of talented

people that work here; many of them for well over

20 years. It is a true pleasure to work with them

every day.”

Steve says it is hard to believe that it has

already been 30 years since he joined Meridian.

He still looks forward to coming to work every day

and is excited about what the future holds for the


Gulfstream Service Training

Earlier this year, both our FBO locations successfully completed ground

handling and servicing training for large cabin and mid-cabin Gulfstream

aircraft. The training is offered by Gulfstream in partnership with Flight-

Safety International, who developed the course curriculum. The program is

designed to raise awareness for aircraft safety during servicing and improve

dispatch reliability. The training is available to FBOs that handle Gulfstream


The two online training courses are designed for line service technicians

and cover large cabin Gulfstream (G350, G450, G500, G550, G650)

and mid-cabin Gulfstream (G150, G200, G280) aircraft.

Gulfstream recognizes those FBOs that have successfully reached

100% Line Technician completion of the training. Meridian Teterboro and

Meridian Hayward have completed both the mid-cabin and large cabin training.

Subjects covered in the training include aircraft parking, towing and

mooring, water servicing, window cleaning, snow and ice removal, and a

comprehensive tour of the aircraft itself.

“We are always interested in ways that we can improve the service

we offer customers,” said Jeff Torres, Line Service Training Coordinator.

“Adding another level of expertise only adds to the quality service we offer

our customers, in this case, those who operate or are traveling on a Gulfstream

model aircraft.”

“Meridian is dedicated to continuous improvement opportunities,

which help us maintain the highest standards,” adds Carlos Rodriguez,

General Manager of Meridian Hayward. “We are pleased to have attained

another endorsement, which adds to our commitment to safety, reliability

and outstanding customer service.”

Meridian Hayward employees enjoying their first ever Pot Luck

dinner. The holiday event was a great way to bring Hayward

employees and their families together.

Holiday Pot Luck Dinner at Hayward

In December 2017, Meridian Hayward celebrated

the holiday season with its 1st Annual Holiday Pot

Luck Dinner. The event, which is typically celebrated

during the summer at Meridian Teterboro, was

dedicated to bringing Meridian Hayward employees

and their families together. All of the food,

drinks and other items for the event were created

and brought in by Meridian employees. The meals

included various mouth-watering, homemade dishes

that represented a wide range of diverse foods and

cultures. The dinner was a great success and it’s

safe to say that everyone walked away feeling very

content and very full. It was a great way to end the

work week and prepare for the New Year ahead!

Astonishingly enough, this was Craig’s father’s 65th marathon!

John commented, “We have done some running before, but this is the first

time we’ve all come together to do this. For me, the goal was to finish and

have fun.” While John admits he does not see his running career ending

anytime soon, he said his current short-term goal is to complete 75 marathons.

At his current rate of participation, we have no doubt he’ll be able to

complete this task in three years!

We at Meridian are proud of Craig and his family for completing

such an incredible feat and appreciate them donning Meridian t-shirts at the

event’s finish line!

Meridian Proud to Support Local Business

Meridian is pleased to announce that Claremont Vodka, distilled in New

Jersey, is now available on all of our private charter flights upon request.

Claremont was founded in May of 2014 by current CEO Tim Koether

under the principle that world class spirits could be produced in the Garden

State. New Jersey’s liquor industry has experienced a rebirth, as recently

Meridian is proud to announce that New Jersey’s own, Claremont Vodka, will be available upon

request on all of its private charter flights. Claremont is locally-distilled and sources most of

its ingredients from the Garden State.

The Ferguson Family at the finish line of the 17th Annual

Mercedes-Benz Marathon in Birmingham, AL. (l to r): John

Ferguson, Ann Ferguson, Carrie Wilson, Kate Gaskin, and

Craig Ferguson.

Marathon Run for Charity

In February, Craig Ferguson, Meridian’s Manager of

Safety, and his immediate family participated in the

Mercedes-Benz Marathon in Birmingham, AL. Now in

its 17th year, the Mercedes-Benz Marathon Weekend

of Events has become a Birmingham tradition. The

event has helped raise millions of dollars for local

charities throughout its 16-year history.

Craig’s mother, Ann, and his two sisters,

Kate and Carrie, participated in the half marathon

(13.1 miles), while Craig and his father, John, participated

in the full-length marathon (26.2 miles). All

five members of the Ferguson family finished the

race and three of them managed to place in their

respective age groups.

enacted laws have provided new opportunities for the state’s wineries,

breweries and distilleries, such as Claremont.

Since then, Claremont has managed to grow and become the largest craft

distillery in New Jersey with over 4,000 gallons of fermentation capacity and

1,000 gallons of distillation capacity. In addition, Claremont takes advantage

of the fact that New Jersey is among the nation’s largest producer of a

variety of fruits and vegetables. They use New Jersey raised potatoes in the

vodka production process, as well as an assortment of locally grown fruits,

like blueberries and peaches.

Mr. Koether is a firm believer in sourcing his company’s ingredients

locally. He says, “Claremont is proudly owned by, and its products proudly

produced and sold by, lifelong New Jerseyans. We are proud of our heritage

and the products we create. Our attention to detail through constant and

personal monitoring throughout the production process results in true craft

spirits that we believe are among the finest produced.” Mr. Koether thinks

you will agree!

Claremont Vodka is the first and only craft spirit produced in

New Jersey to be awarded a gold medal at the San Francisco World Spirits

Competition, the most highly regarded spirits competition in the world. In

addition, Wine Enthusiast Magazine named Claremont Vodka a Top 100 Spirit

of 2016, giving it a 93-point rating.



Saqiba Parveen

Customer Service


Saqiba Parveen says seeing Meridian customers is

the best part of her day. That is an important quality

for a Customer Service Representative (CSR), a

position Saqiba has held for the past 11 years.

Saqiba began working part-time at Meridian

while in college and said at the time she never

dreamed she would end up staying. “I was working

here part-time and had planned to write my school

thesis on my experience and figured that would be

it. After graduation, I was offered a full-time position

and never left.”

Saqiba says she is truly a people person. “I love interfacing with

everyone here—the pilots, the passengers and my coworkers. One of the best

parts of my job is that I get to deal with new people every day, while also

working with regular customers and people I know.”

Saqiba graduated from Berkeley College with a degree in Business

Administration, and other than working in a hospital ICU during college,

Meridian has been her career of choice. Like any good CSR, Saqiba has had

opportunities to work somewhere else, but she has never thought about


“Meridian is an awesome company to work for,” she says. “Everyone

from the Foresters to the Executive Team to my colleagues is great. Plus, I

truly enjoy being in Customer Service and all the various activities that are

part of my job.”

Over the years, Saqiba has taken on some additional customer

service tasks. She is responsible for compiling the monthly hangar report,

which tracks overnight transient aircraft use. She is also responsible for

training new CSRs when they join the company or department. In fact, she

spent time at Meridian Hayward last year working with the CSR staff there

when the new facility was opened. She recently has also begun helping

with some administrative work in Meridian Jet Center.

When asked what she likes best about working at Meridian, Saqiba

says, “This is a family-owned company and you really feel like you are part

of the family. I feel privileged to work for Meridian. It’s a great place to be

every day.”

20 Years

5 Years

Tyrell Brown

Promotions & New Assignments



Heather DeRegis

Bob Ferraro

15 Years

Rosa Quinones-Capela

Arlene Baetiong

10 Years

Raul Brito

Michael Kasica, Sr.

Vincent Stefano

Haakon Aurdal


Jeffrey Torres

Stephen Cohen

Cesar Rios-Fonseca

Celine Martinez

Angelina Villarreal

Anthony Hill

Kenisha Bradley

Owen Woodland

Tony Arias

Robert Ramos

Andy Lawrence

Omar Samad

Thomas Weller

Michelle Coe-Mandzy

Stephany Cabrera

Julio Palacios

Brian Fox

Promoted to Accounting Supervisor

Meridian Teterboro

Earned FAA Aircraft

Dispatcher Certificate

Meridian Air Charter

Promoted to Lead Detailer

Meridian Jet Center

Promoted to Aircraft Technician

Shift Lead

Meridian Jet Center

Bruce Nethercott

Keith Carlyle

Scott Cooper

Joshua Allen

Kelvin Phu

John Restrepo

Brittany Page

Promoted to Owner Services

Meridian Air Charter

Estrella Reynoso

David Albiero

Mark Weston

Kenneth Rivera

Paul Arcos

Kevin Campbell

Celine Martinez

Promoted to HR Assistant

Meridian Teterboro

Delia Roldan

Jessica Stelfox

Joseph Waller

Brian Judge

Nila Gonzales

Kae Imura

Trevor Niemann

Tramaine Waite


Giving Back

Every October, Meridian takes part in the annual

“Bag a Lunch, Help a Bunch” campaign, sponsored

by Table to Table, a community-based food rescue

program that collects prepared and perishable food

that would otherwise be wasted and delivers it to

organizations serving the hungry in Northern New

Jersey. Meridian is a

proud supporter of

Table to Table, which

has delivered over

122 million meals to

neighbors in need

for the last 18 years.

During the Bag a

Lunch campaign,

Meridian employees

are asked to donate

what they would

normally spend on

lunch for a day.

Donating to the

campaign is

voluntary and the donation amounts are of each

individual’s choosing. After the donations are tallied

at the end of the program, the company donates

a matching gift at 100%, effectively doubling the


Our 2017 campaign raised $1,566 through

Meridian employee donations and the company

matching dollar-for-dollar. That amount enabled

Table to Table to provide enough food for over

15,000 healthy meals. Kelly Manzo, HR Assistant,

was again the Meridian Team Captain, responsible for

promoting the program at the company and coordinating

with her counterparts at Table to Table. “The

Bag a Lunch program is a great way for employees

to help others in our local communities who are less

fortunate,” says Kelly. “By donating what we would

normally spend on lunch, each person’s individual contribution

is doubled with the gift matching program,

and ultimately has a much greater impact on those

who need it most.” To help raise awareness of the

campaign, donation bags were placed in several

locations throughout the FBO, including the Break

Room, Line Service, Jet Center and Charter areas.

Every day Table to Table picks up fresh,

wholesome food that otherwise would have been

discarded, and delivers it safely to non-profit organizations

such as soup kitchens, homeless shelters

and centers, programs for women and children who are victims of domestic

violence, and programs that assist the working poor that serve meals to the

hungry in Bergen, Passaic, Hudson and Essex counties. With five refrigerated

vehicles and dedicated drivers, Table to Table picks up food from a wide

range of food establishments each day. This food is delivered on the day it

is donated, avoiding the need for warehouse facilities and keeping Table To

Table’s costs limited to the operation of the vehicles.

With the help of others, Table To Table redistributed enough food to

provide 18 million meals to hungry families in Northern New Jersey in 2017.

For more information, please visit their website at www.tabletotable.org.

Meridian was also proud to participate in the Thanksgiving Food Drive to

benefit Eva’s Village, an organization dedicated to helping feed the hungry

and poor. Employees came together and donated

a variety of canned or non-perishable food items

from their pantries at home. This year, we managed

to fill three box loads of items for the non-profit


Eva’s Village, located in Paterson, NJ, was

founded in 1982. They provide hot meals for up

to 400 homeless and working poor each day, 365

days a year. In addition to these lunches, they serve

breakfast, lunch and dinner to those staying in

their outpatient recovery and sheltering programs. The total output of their

kitchen is 1,200 hot meals per day, with more than 438,000 hot meals served

annually. If you would like to learn more about Eva’s Village, please visit their

website at www.evasvillage.org.

Meridian employees cheerfully took part in the annual Teterboro Holiday

Gift Drive that benefits the Center for Hope and Safety. This was the 24th

consecutive year that the drive has taken place. Meridian, along with other

Teterboro-based aviation companies, gather together and donate new toys,

games, clothes, shoes, gift cards and other gifts for those in need.

Center for Hope and Safety’s mission is

to assist women and children who are victims of

domestic violence, including emotional, economic,

sexual and physical abuse. The agency provides

emergency and transitional housing, emotional

support, and a diversified continuum of services

focused on safety, empowerment and self-sufficiency.

Through community partnerships, Center for Hope

and Safety raises awareness, provides services and

educates community members about domestic


Meridian is proud to participate in such

an impactful campaign that delivers holiday cheer to local families. For more

information about the Center for Hope and Safety, please visit their website

at www.hopeandsafetynj.org.

We at Meridian are honored to Give Back and are proud of our

employees and their commitment to these and other worthy causes.

Mile Markers continued from page 12

soaring 6th-century dome and rare Christian

mosaics. The city’s cultural and entertainment hub

can be found across the city’s natural harbor, the

Golden Horn, in the Beyoglu District. In 2010,

Istanbul was named a European Capital of Culture,

which contributed to making the city the world’s

fifth most popular tourist destination.

Istanbul’s strategic location drew more

than conquering armies. Its position on the legendary

Silk Road rail networks to Europe and the Middle

East, and as the only sea route between the Black

Sea and the Mediterranean, drew many merchants and traders who stayed

and produced a cosmopolitan population, which gave the city a cultural

diversity that remains to this day.

The city’s cuisine is as diverse as its heritage and, by all accounts,

delicious. You can dine on aromatic Asian dishes or Italian classics or sample

the succulent kebabs, mezes and freshly caught fish that are the city’s

signature dishes.

Whether you visit Istanbul for business or pleasure, you will find

yourself in a global, vibrant city that bridges cultures, as well as ancient

and modern times.


485 Industrial Avenue

Teterboro, New Jersey 07608

mile markers: Istanbul, Turkey

Istanbul, Turkey is unique in that it is a transcontinental city. It

straddles the Bosphorus Strait, which separates Europe and Asia,

between the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea. Historically known

as Constantinople and Byzantium, Istanbul is the most populous city

in Turkey and the country’s economic, cultural and historic center.

The commercial and historical center lies on the European side and

about a third of its population lives on the Asian side. Istanbul is

truly a captivating meeting place of East and West. Recently, one of

Meridian’s managed aircraft, a Gulfstream G550, made a trip to this

historic and culturally diverse city.

Istanbul’s biggest attraction is its historic center, partially

listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It reflects cultural influences

of the many empires that once ruled here. The Byzantines, who

adorned their churches and palaces with mosaics and frescoes,

many of which still remain, were followed by the Ottomans. They

launched an ambitious building program and their magnificently

decorated imperial mosques are architectural triumphs that together

form one of the world’s great skylines. In recent years, local banks and

business dynasties have reprised the Ottomans’ grand ambitions and

endowed an impressive array of galleries, museums and festivals.

Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, Turkey

Historic remains include the open-air, Roman-era Hippodrome,

which was for centuries the site of chariot races and

Egyptian obelisks. The iconic Byzantine Hagia Sophia features a

continued on page 11

Meridian Teterboro

Teterboro Airport (TEB)

485 Industrial Avenue

Teterboro, NJ 07608

Meridian Air Charter

Phone 201.288.5459 / 800.882.2333

Email charter@meridian.aero

Meridian Hayward

Hayward Executive Airport (HWD)

1 Tuskegee Drive

Hayward, CA 94545


FBO / Customer Service

Phone 201.288.5040

Email teb@meridian.aero

Meridian Jet Center

Phone 201.288.3880

Email jetmaintenance@meridian.aero

FBO / Customer Service

Phone 510.674.2500

Email hwd@meridian.aero

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