Dear Customers, Meridian Family, and Friends,
i n this iss u e
>>> Letter from
the CEO 1
>>> Poised for
>>> Meridian Hayward
Photo Spread 6
>>> Plane Folk 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
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.
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
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
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.
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
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
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
Ethical Business Practices
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
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!
M E R I D I A N
H A Y W A R D
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
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
“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
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 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
Promotions & New Assignments
Michael Kasica, Sr.
Promoted to Accounting Supervisor
Earned FAA Aircraft
Meridian Air Charter
Promoted to Lead Detailer
Meridian Jet Center
Promoted to Aircraft Technician
Meridian Jet Center
Promoted to Owner Services
Meridian Air Charter
Promoted to HR Assistant
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
are asked to donate
what they would
normally spend on
lunch for a day.
Donating to the
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
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
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
Teterboro Airport (TEB)
485 Industrial Avenue
Teterboro, NJ 07608
Meridian Air Charter
Phone 201.288.5459 / 800.882.2333
Hayward Executive Airport (HWD)
1 Tuskegee Drive
Hayward, CA 94545
FBO / Customer Service
Meridian Jet Center
FBO / Customer Service